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Hypocritical Leadership

June 10, 2011

You’ve made it!

You’ve been promoted and now you’ve got that nice cushy management gig with the corner office, embossed letterhead and a budget to take other big-shots out to lunch.  You vow to never forget what it’s like working in the cubicle-farm, churning out the product and getting results for the man.  You draw up a mental inventory of what you’re going to do to be a great leader.  You WANT to influence others, accomplish objectives and move your group and organization forward.  You KNOW that your actions can and will inspire others.

But as the years pass, some subtle changes in your behavior start to emerge.  And suddenly – you’ve become a ………. hypocritical leader…….

(1) A person who engages in the same behaviors he condemns others for. (2) A person who professes certain ideals, but fails to live up to them. (3) A person who holds other people to higher standards than he holds himself
(from the Urban Dictionary)

**********

“Not me!” you say.  “Why, I live by the same rules and set of standards that I expect my employees to live by.  I haven’t forgotten what it’s like!”

Huh.

Check it …

“We have an attendance policy and I expect you to be here on time or else I’ll have to give you a written warning.” (But I’ll stroll in whenever I feel like it)

“When you’re here at work, it’s time to work.  We can’t allow access to LinkedIn, MSNBC or gmail because you’ll just waste time and not get your job done.” (But I can play Words with Friends on my company provided iPhone all throughout the day)

“The company email system is to be used for work-related purposes only.” (But I’m going to forward the vacation pictures from my Cancun trip to all my friends and co-workers).

“My personal motto is ‘I hire the best people and get out of their way so they can do their job.” (But I’m going to need you to cc me on every e-mail and give me a written progress report of how you’ve spent your time each day).

**********

Indeed.

You may still be the Boss…but are you still the Leader?

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Brian C permalink
    June 14, 2011 2:55 pm

    I think peers and subordinates are able to identify people who fall into this category of behavior. It shows the value of 360 degree evaluation systems, which supposedly 90% of Fortune 500 companies use.

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