The ABC’s of Leadership (Day 6): Forgive
Learn to forgive. The art of forgiveness is the masterpiece tool in a leader’s toolbox.
The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong. (Mahatma Gandhi)
Day 6 – ‘F’
Every one of us is going to make a mistake. It’s just a matter of time. The only real consideration is how we respond once the mistake has been made.
If you’re doing your job right, your team has the freedom to own their jobs, and the opportunity to make decisions. Mistakes are signs of growth, so use them to strengthen your team’s effectiveness. And, more importantly, their ability to relate to, and collaborate with, one another.
There is a nobility in compassion, a beauty in empathy, a grace in forgiveness. (John Connolly)
Forbes.com contributor David Williams 2015 piece ‘Forgiveness: The Least Understood Trait in the Workplace‘ argues that there are significant implications of failing to forgive in the workplace. When forgiveness is not demonstrated, a culture of fear grows, and this impacts interpersonal relationships. It also inhibits conflict resolution among team members.
Additional research done by the University of Michigan encourages forgiveness. Kim Cameron’s research promotes forgiveness because it humanizes the workplace environment. Cameron also believes it encourages other human virtues such as compassion, humility and gratitude (more on the importance of gratitude here).
Choose to make an impact. Allow your teams the freedom to make decisions, and mistakes. Offer a kind word when they fall short. I have a habit of telling my teams ‘if we do well, I’ll give you all the credit. If things, go badly, I’ll take all the blame.’ I want to empower my teams. This doesn’t mean they aren’t accountable for the decisions they make, but it means that I support, and trust them. I choose empowerment and forgiveness as my sharpening tools. What are your tools?
Want more on leadership? Check out my partner Dale Richardson’s thoughts in his Live the Goals podcast here!
“The ABC’s of Leadership” is a web series highlighting principles of leadership.
Each day, we’ll highlight a new focus area and concept. Done in partnership with Dale Richardson, a Podcast Host and John Maxwell Team certified speaker, trainer and coach, we’ll also offer a podcast exploring each idea further.
Tune in daily!