Leaders are Cautious About Self-Reference

I used to espouse this as a general rule: Successful leaders avoid saying “I,” “me,” and “myself” when offering thoughts and assigning tasks. Using team-oriented “we” language keeps the focus on others instead of the leader. However… I’ve revised my general rule over time (see below) even though the original still has merit. Leaders have … Read more

Leaders Talk About How We Do Things Around Here

Jim, the principal at my first teaching job, often said, “Most days, we have fun around here.” He said this to me at my job interview and followed it with “…and you can’t say that about most jobs.” I accepted the job and realized he was right. But that was 30 years ago, and Jim … Read more

Leaders Know It’s “For Us” or “With Me,” Not “For Me”

Servant leadership is about looking for opportunities to meet the needs presented to us. So, when we have simple tasks on our plate, it’s natural to ask someone: “Would you please do that for me?” The “for me” is such a common phase, we do not think much about it. In essence, we are asking … Read more