Why honor matters in leadership

Why honor matters in leadership

Let there be no mistake. The journey that you take yourself and others on is just as important as arriving at the destination.  It’s “The How” and “The Why” balance in what you do. Honor in leadership matters because it’s all about “The How.” It’s defined as good quality of character as judged by other people and high moral standards of behavior. 

Honor is essential to effective leadership. Here are some tips to help you gain and increase your honor with others. 

Let go of ego and the addiction to being right

Our own need to feed our ego and the addiction to being right are two of the biggest traps in leadership.  The allure of both of these ideas only increases as you rise in leadership. Both cause the leader to put themselves over the people that they serve, skew their perspective on critical decisions, and can cause physical, mental, and emotional damage to others as well. 

To help fight your ego:

  • Hold on to Humility (EP 162) and spot narcissism in yourself before it grows. 
  • Lean into the power of Thank You (EP 206) and show gratitude to others. 
  • Support, develop, and surround yourself with some people that don’t feed your ego. Work with people that are smart, continuous learners, and brave enough to speak up in tough situations. 
  • Look at the perks of your job that feed your ego. Do you need that front parking space or other special perks? It’s ok to let go of some of those things to keep your ego at bay. 

To fight the addiction to being right:

  • Avoid groupthink that feeds the addiction to being right. Again find people that will speak up with a different opinion. 
  • Give your people a safe place and the trust to speak up when needed. 
  • Affirm other ideas that people have. Encourage and foster creativity in your group. 
  • Strengthen your own-self awareness to realize when you’ve made a mistake or gone too far. Show authenticity and honor by admitting those mistakes to others. They already know anyway!

We’ll have more tips on fighting the addiction to being right in show 257: The Addiction to being right and the 7 deadly sins of leadership. 

Check the soil that you are rooted in

There is no doubt that leaders without honor have just as much passion as those that lead honorably, while many unhonorable leaders truly believe that they are in the right. The misalignment comes in how they’ve rooted themselves and what they are feeding themselves on a regular basis. 

Check your own soil from time to time to see how you are rooted and what you are taking in on a daily basis. We’ve talked for years about how a person’s perception is their reality. (Even when it’s wrong.) Social media, the topics you regularly search out, and who you associate with highly influence your perception whether you realize it or not. 

Let’s say you are at work and a boss that you respect says that the sky used to be red and because of modern technology it turned blue. You would be right to think that’s ridiculous and insane because you are rooted correctly! As time goes on, you hear your co-workers talk about it. One of them shares a picture of a sunset where the sky truly is red. You then go to the internet and check out fringe groups and Youtube videos that are saying the same thing. You then start lowering your defenses and are more open to the idea. (You have now unknowingly started changing your soil and what you are consuming) Before you know it you are all in on a conspiracy theory. Sounds crazy? This type of behavioral trail is exactly what leads others to:

As a leader in business and in your home, you have an obligation to lead with truth, honesty, and transparency with those that you influence. In order to do that, you need to be well rooted yourself first. You can have honorable intentions in your own mind, but can’t actually lead with honor if you lead other people astray and away from truth and reality. 

Other ways that you show honor to yourself and others

  • Lose graciously and win humbly
  • Seek to affirm instead of condemning
  • Listen more and talk less
  • Deesculate yourself when you feel anger towards someone
  • Educate yourself about an opposing view
  • Treat others like you want to be treated
  • Don’t say anything online that you wouldn’t say to a friend face-to-face
  • Keep promises that you make to others
  • Accept responsibility for your decisions

You may not lead a country, large business, or have a large team that reports to you. It doesn’t matter. You have people out there that are relying on you to lead them and yourself well. Lead with honor so you will lead yourself and others down the right path towards your destination.  

Make a better tomorrow.