There are more than a few leaders who expect different things of themselves than they do of those who follow them. To some extent, that makes sense – leaders are different… they may have more responsibilities competing for thier time, they are often over-booked and short on time, they have a level of experience that many don’t have. But, on the other hand, it can be problematic. In the end, leaders are part of the organization and what they do is seen by others as important, while what they don’t do somehow seems less important.
We have seen it often with eduction in organizations. Executives often aren’t exposed to the training that people get one level below them, creating a knowledge gap. Managers are told that certain training sessions are mandatory. But leaders often say “we already know how to do XYZ… we don’t need training on it.” Unfortunately, they don’t know what they don’t know.
That knowledge gap can lead to the demise of the learning that was intended. Without exposure to the same learning, sometimes leaders don’t ask the right questions to reinforce the learning, or they do things to undermine things that were taught – all unknowingly. And, without the interest and attention from leaders, many times the managers assume this must not be so important.
Leaders set the pace and the tone of an organization. Follow the leader was a game we all played in grade school… and to some extent, we still play it at work. If you are the boss, think about what you are doing and how those following will see it.