Rise above negative leadership examples to live your purpose.
You can remember the moment like it was yesterday, maybe it was yesterday. The moment when you made a pledge to yourself, “If I am ever in charge I will never be like that person.”
This pledge applies to a variety of arenas including parenting, business, sports, hobbies, politics, etc. The area of application that we will focus on for this exercise is with positions of leadership in business.
Rise above the negative examples of leadership
More often than not, when you focus on what you don’t want to be, you will limit your development. When you stop to think about the tier of mediocre role models in your life, those who had some good qualities but don’t make the top 10 list of leaders, were they trapped in the shadow of their negative experiences?
If your only goal is not to be like someone whom you were harmed by or despised, you allow that person to continue to hold a grasp on your potential.
I am not trying to be an armchair psychologist. As such, I am speaking from personal experience with my own pledges as well as those I have heard directly from people in a position of leadership. I remember one manager who was so committed to not being what their former manager was that they fell short of clarifying their own identity and clear purpose as a leader.
Embrace your identity and live your purpose as a leader
When your vision is to not be like so-and-so you are more likely to become a replica of so-and-so than you are to embrace your identity. Don’t allow negative leadership examples to take residence in your personal and professional development. You are not your former boss and the best way to ensure you don’t become them is to carve out your own purpose.
Stop comparing yourself to others. The pledge is useless. Saying, “At least I am not like so-and-so,” is nowhere near as important as being able to say, “I am learning to embrace my identity and live my purpose.” Build a bridge and get over that terrible boss. Pursue your purpose and if you reach a point of leadership don’t allow them to shape your vision.
Leadership development resources from The DYOJO:
Thoughts on personal and professional development.
Jon Isaacson, The Intentional Restorer, is a contractor, author, and host of The DYOJO Podcast. The goal of The DYOJO is to help growth-minded restoration professionals shorten their DANG learning curve for personal and professional development. You can watch The DYOJO Podcast on YouTube on Thursdays or listen on your favorite podcast platform.