Commitment Comes With Risks
Commitment comes in many forms. The 2004 Ukrainian Presidential Election was one for the books. Even the near fatal mysterious poisoning and disfigured face couldn’t stop one candidate from standing up for what he believed in.
Disfigured and fighting for his life, Ukrainian Presidential candidate Victor Yushchenko demonstrated his commitment to his ideologies and supporters. Yushchenko faced the incumbent party, who held a tight reign over the country. It was clear neither was willing to hold back, one for good the other for evil.
On election day, Yushchenko was in the lead when the ruling party rigged the results. A single woman changed the course of history with her commitment to the truth. While the state media was exclaiming the ruling party as victors, Natalia Dmitruk refused to sign the lie to the deaf community. She instead signed “They are lying and I’m ashamed to translate those lies. Yushchenko is our president.”
Without the commitments from Yushchenko to fight for his cause and Natalia Dmitruk for refusing to propel the lie, the ruling party would have remained in power. Surely they were facing threats for their actions, but leading comes in all forms and during this election, a leader was needed.
The Orange Revolution was a result of one person who had accessibility, transparency, and cared for her nation. The government was forced to meet their demands, a new election was held and Victor Yushchenko became president. That is commitment.
Character Requires Commitment
As the Keys to Trust series continues, Character will be addressed further. For now, one half of that equation is commitment. No matter who you are, your character speaks more about you than any amount of words ever will.
To be a person with a high level of character, you must be consistent at the things that matter. Committing to being accessible, transparent, and caring for your team means doing so consistently. Send the message that you can be trusted and win influence without having to bark orders.
3 Parts of Commitment
Leadership is about influence but influence requires trust. As part of building trust, leaders have to remain accessible to the team to allows communication and trust to happen. They have to learn who you are, be able to come to you with problems, and give you the opportunity to engage in development opportunities.
If you make it a point to be accessible, people will communicate with you. This communication can provide valuable information that can save you in the long run. If you are in manufacturing and your factory workers see an issue now, mid management may try to squash the bad news from reaching you. Finding out about a potential problem can save your company embarrassment and money.
Have you ever heard “your daddy wasn’t a glass maker”? Too many times we see the same thing in leaders. The act of leading is filled with influence, but people are leery of being influenced by someone who hides behind the veil. As leaders, it is our responsibility to create transparency for our teams. Transparency builds trust and opens two-way communication.
Unfortunately, true transparency is unusual. A 2014 study by the American Psychological Association found that 25% of employees surveyed didn’t trust their employers. Worse, only about half feel their employer is honest with them. These are some large percentages that need to be worked out.
Since leadership is not a position or title, it doesn’t have anything to do with power or authority. The ability to get someone else to do what you need them to do because they want to is influential leadership. True leadership requires trust to win influence and a caring attitude is one of the foundations of trust.
When you care about people, the people care about you. Once people care about you, they care about the mission. Caring about the mission provides customers with amazing experiences. Do you see how caring about your people can have a dramatic impact to the bottom line?
Question: What will you do this week to make an impact and show your commitment? You can leave a comment by clicking here.