Pride is a powerful foe. Even the best leaders can easily fall victim to this silent assassin if they are are not vigilant.
How often have we seen leaders fall from places of significance and influence to places of disgrace? It seems like a regular occurrence that we hear about a leader who comes crashing back to reality after pride has taken over.
Pride & Pain
Pride can cause you pain and damage in a variety of ways. It can be as scant as a simple bruising of the ego in one incidence. Or, at the other end of the spectrum, it can cost you a large portion of your leadership effectiveness and credibility.
Remember, it is very apparent to others, and less apparent to us, when we get our heads and hearts filled with the prideful venom of self-saturation and adulation. It eats our credibility from the inside out.
Like a Ninja, pride can be very stealthy and can quickly disable or eliminate a leader with little warning or fanfare.
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I have found that through every season of my life and throughout my development journey as a leader, that pride has been a consistent, persistent, and worthy adversary.
Consider the Source
For me, protection from pride comes from a variety of sources.
One of the most powerful and meaningful is the unconditional love and support from my wife, Erin. She is my greatest cheerleader (and was one in real life) and my strongest defense against this leadership assassin. She keeps me grounded and always brings me back to reality and focused on what is truly important in life and as a leader.
With every individual or team success, the unwary leader can increase their vulnerability to the destructive forces of pride. The same skills, competencies and values that make you successful as a leader can be the very things that can “puff you up” and replace humility in your heart with a lethal dose of venomous pride.
“As a leader, you must be proactive and put defenses in place to protect your heart and status as a leader from the ‘Silent Leadership Assassin’.”
One strong defense against pride is a network of other leaders who can and will be honest with you when they see pride creeping up on you. Sometimes others can easily see the enemy approaching and can help you thwart an attack and keep your leadership strong and on track.
I challenge you to develop, cultivate and utilize your own defensive team of leaders to keep you accountable and safe.
Please share any experiences in your own leadership journey when pride may have gotten the best of you and the impact it made. I would also love to hear stories of tools you have used that have been an effective defense against pride.
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Filed under: Coaching Corner, Leadership Lessons Learned, Leadership vs. Management, Life Balance, Practical Steps to Influence, Servant Leadership Tagged: | business, l2l, leadership, Linked 2 Leadership, Management, Network, Pride, Servant Leadership, teamwork