Unit 6: Leading By Example

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Are you someone who leads by example?  Are you someone who sets the standard for others to follow? Are you someone that others actually want to follow?

In this chapter, you will learn to look in the mirror and see if you are the person you want others to be. This may be the hardest chapter of all if you are being honest with yourself. Leading by example is a key component of being a true leader and a true follower.

Honest self-assessment and reflection are one of the hardest things to do. We tend to overlook our own shortcomings while being all too quick to spot them in others. Other times, we are far too critical of ourselves as we give others the benefit of the doubt. In this unit, you will be challenged to take a long and hard look in the mirror and see if you are modeling the very beliefs you claimed to espouse in the previous unit.

It is important that you try to be as objective as possible and see yourself as others see you. You need not be overly critical, nor should you gloss over some areas of possible self-improvement. Every journey of self-improvement begins with self-assessment. As you prepare for your leadership journey, it is important that you not only take stock of what you need to be successful but also what tools you already have.

It is also important to know your strengths and weaknesses as you approach difficult situations so that you are able to lead from your strengths. If you try and hide or disguise your weaknesses, you are only delaying the inevitable. Being honest about who you are and leading from your strengths gives your best chance at surviving just about any situation.

The questions that follow are designed to assist you with the self-reflection process. Your answers may make you uncomfortable, but if dealt with honestly, it will make you a better leader. Ask yourself this: would I rather fail with style or lead with flaws?

We end this essay with the same question we began it with — “Do you believe that you are a good role model?”

LEADERSHIP TIP: When faced with the need to cross a fast-moving river, would you be better suited to build a boat, a bridge, or swim? Knowing your leadership strengths may just help you to survive.

Don’t forget to download and print the course materials prior to starting the unit. Leave a comment below about how you lead by example.

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Email Scott directly at scott@scottlang.net.

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