We The People

“It is much easier to criticize the actions of others than change our own.”

Photo by Katharina Dielenhein

By John Dunia

Any group gathered together for a purpose will function better when headed by a great leader. Whether it be a small business or an entire nation, people are willing to listen and follow the instructions from others whom they hold in high regard. While circumstances may require different types of leadership skills, certain qualities ought to be a part of every leaders’ style.

There are countless books, multitudes of classes, and infinite opinions on what comprises a great leader. No doubt some traits are vital to great leadership, what are the duties, characteristics, and crucial components which ordinary citizens should possess? Why should destiny be left to the actions of the one in charge?

Each one of has as much of an obligation to behave in many of the same ways we would expect from our leaders. Is it not hypocritical to demand honesty, integrity, and humanity from them yet excuse it from ourselves?

Almost on a daily occurrence, there are headlines spotlighting world leaders who have displayed character unbecoming of what would be regarded as leadership qualities. Criticizing those actions, no matter how deserved they may be, gets nearly as much attention. However, if a trail of reporters were following your every move, how much negative – or for that matter, positive – reports could be written about you?

If we are going to decry and complain about the actions of those in power then we also should consider our own. If there is one particular conduct I find extremely appalling it is when those in positions of authority take every opportunity to place blame on others. It is laughable how many so-called leaders often use this puny and cowardly argument. Most often this is a technique to shift the focus from the weak leadership skills possessed by the accuser.

For those who have read many of my articles, you’ll recall that self-examination and reflection is a major theme throughout nearly every one. Admittedly, there are times when the actions of others do greatly influence an outcome but that is not a ticket for us to wield the same behavior that formerly we had railed against. How will we grow as an individual if we first don’t get a better understanding of who we are? This is accomplished when we take an honest look at the person in the mirror.

If we begin to raise the level of our own behaviors, then we can rightly demand the same from our leaders. If we denounce those whose strategy is to demean and debase their opponents – especially because they are covering up their own deficiencies and insecurities – they will have no choice but to change.

The best way to raise the level of leadership is for those being led to let them know what you expect and that you are willing to raise your own level of honesty, integrity, and humanity.

Many thanks to Katharina Dielenhein for the beautiful picture. Thanks as always and I look forward to your comments.

 

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