I have two sons, both of whom showed interest in riding street bikes as teenagers. If you or your kids ride them, I have no quarrel with you, but my admonition to them always went something like this:
“You’re welcome to bring street bikes home, but fair warning, I will drive over them with my truck.”
You might find that policy great or you might find it repugnant, but I can assure you that you don’t find it as onerous as my guys did. This is perhaps because I myself own two street bikes, one of which does the quarter mile in 10 seconds. And I love them both. They’re fantastic. My dubious rationale is that if I get smoked, it’s really not a huge deal as I’ve lived a long life already, but for them (from a statistical point of view) taking that kind of risk at their age doesn’t make sense. Detractors may label this double-speaking casuistry, but I think of it as plain old hypocritical good sense 😊.
This is a good illustration of ‘the credibility gap’ and now that I’ve exposed my own hypocrisy, I’m going to give you a challenge and maybe expose some of yours:
Unless you’re modeling the behaviours you want to see in others, you’re not a leader.
So, try this: Think right now of the three behaviours you want your team members to display. They might look something like this:
- Take ownership of the job
- Work hard
- Life everyone’s spirits
Now, score yourself out of 10 on each of these values. How do you score?
No one exceeds the example set by their leader
If you score a seven, everyone around you will score between a four and a six. If you score a 10, you’ll be surrounded by eights and nines.
Setting a good example doesn’t guarantee that you’ll be an effective leader. But not setting a good example does guarantee that you absolutely will not win in a leadership role.
So, don’t be like me. Practice what you preach, and watch others follow your lead.
Getting ahead is about getting started!