Think They Have all the Answers.

The Dumb Leader pulled his team member aside at the break of the meeting. He praised them for the leadership development session they had just run for the team. During the conversation he informed them it was one of the best ones he had sat in. The self-rightous leader always brings a kicker.

But I only go to these sorts of things when the company makes me

Reading between the lines, what he was actually saying was this. It was clear that his actions and behaviours confirmed this.

i’m pretty confident i know everything and i don’t need to learn anything else

That same DL would stride into the company meetings and regale everyone with all with his notions of superiority, wax lyrical on everything that he thought was correct, poo-pood any ideas that his team may come up, and overall ensured that everyone knew that he was the king and ultimately the king-maker.

He thought….sorry, he believed he knew all the answers. He had it all. No situation was too big, too scary or too powerful for this DL to be able to assert he had the answer.

Members of his teams were privvy to a series of dumb decisions, based around nothing more than a gut feeling from the DL. Decisions ebbed and flowed with the political tides, actions decided last week, were changed without notice as something better came up. Or often, he was derided by his superiors for the stupid actions and behaviours and that prompted the change. He was a walking, talking contradiction who held the power of the team in his hands.

His team hated when he visited their areas of responsibility. They often were left with a feeling  of  insecurity as the constane jibes of what he would do in the areas that he disagreeed with. The team felt nothing they thought of themselves was every any goo. He believed he knew everything and nothing anyone (underneath him) would say would change that viewpoint.

The Scenario

Unbelievably, the DL is still peddling his toxicity and has done so in a couple of different companies after this. The teams that he works with, have high turnover, poor engagement and are often confused about their roles in relation to the strategy. They perform lesser than other comparable team and the DL relies on politics to gain advantage for his own career growth. The other thing that has been observed is that not one person has been promoted under this DL’s watch. And that is an absolute travesty for every one that comes up and works under this DL.

The 3-Step Strategy

This DL is driven by a mindset of self-righteousness. A feeling that they are incredible right in every situation. They know everything, and have no fear of telling everyone.

  1. Always be mindful that our mindset determines everything, and our mindset determines our actions. While we all have delusions, it’s the delusions of being self-rightous that is the poison. Be humble, be grateful and continue to build the best you, because no matter where you are on your journey, you can still be better.
  2. Listen. A skill that’s missing from the self-rightous. Learn how to actively listen to your team, and not just listen for the perception of listening, not just for the chance to share your brilliance with the world. Listen to understand, seek to understand. It’s amazing what this little skill can do for you as a leader.
  3. Always be emphatic. Being able to place yourself in your teams shoes, allows you an awareness that helps them deliver for you. Allow them to chance to make mistakes, and learn. You will always lose the good people who don’t want to be dictated to.

#3 The Self-Rightous. If you know a leader like this, please share this post.