Good leadership means finishing what you started. In the past week I have stressed out tremendously by this principle to the point where I am now writing about it. I’ve lost sleep over it, I can’t stop thinking about it, I want people to learn about it.
- A saying I have (and I repeat often) is “leave it better than you found it” I say this because too many times leaders will leave a place a mess. In fact, many hotels and conference centers hate when Christians come as a group because they terrorize the place and don’t clean up afterwards. What does this have to do with being a leader? Integrity – you aren’t finished until the place is ready to be used by someone else.
- Level 5 (Good to Great, Jim Collins) Leaders who are in charge of an event always finish what they started. If you are in charge of an event or even the team for the event you should a) Be there early, b) Help during the event, c) Make sure your team is working, d) Clean up after the event, e) Debrief/evaluate after the event (can be later on in the week). There is only one two excuses (I forgot if the wife says so) for not completing an event – medical/death. If you have work to do, do it before or after. If you are tired, get some caffeine/sugar. Do not ever pass the buck on finishing an event you have started.
- Another aspect of this is stay to the end. Many times people who are “leaders” will scoot out when no one is looking during the latter part or clean up of the event. If you want to kill your integrity with people, dip out and leave while everyone else is cleaning without telling anyone. This is probably one of my biggest annoyances, shirking your responsibility as a leader. If you absolutely have to leave for one of the reasons mentioned above, tell whoever is in charge. If it is you, tell everyone on your team. Have you ever stopped and said “where is John? He’s supposed to be leading/helping.” What is your first inclination? “Wow, what a slacker!”
Leaders should be people of character and integrity. We must finish what we start. What do you think?