When I was a manager, I remember I created a card for myself. I laminated it. I put it up on my visor. It said: “Is that person any better off after I was with them today?” I knew who I wanted to be--a Leader of Character. Leaders of Character grow other leaders. That begins with everyday coaching. By making this small thing a habit, it reminded me every day to exercise character.
I began to realize there was a need for me and each of my team members to make a distinction between competence and character. Competence is knowing what to do and how to do it. At work, this relates to the skills and tasks of the job. But, being a Leader of Character is about who we are being while we are doing those tasks, not just about the tasks of the job.
Leadership is a blend of competence and character. People follow you because of WHO you are, not because of what you can do. We define character as - our habitual way of operating. HOW we are is WHO we are. Developing Character begins with our thoughts. Thoughts lead to our words. Words lead to our actions. Actions, over time, form our habits. Habits determine our CHARACTER.
If you were going into battle and I told you there were two leaders you could pick from to go with you, consider who you would pick. The first is trustworthy and is the last one to leave work every day. The second knows their numbers backwards and forwards but sometimes works in the gray areas. Who would you choose? Both look good on paper and bring important things to the table but who do you want by your side when things get tough?
We did a survey asking people what they admired most about their leadership hero. Of the 620 individuals we surveyed, 87% responded with a character trait. Only 13% described a competency. What does this tell us? It tells us people trust character. People want to follow character.
In a recent national survey conducted by Ultimate Software and the Center for Generational Kinetics (CGK), a stunning 80% of employees said they could do their job without their managers. Looking back, I know my team would have been in the 80%. After all, I knew how to sell. Competency was there. But, what I was missing—was character.
But, does this mean we should we be worried? No. We all have room to grow when it comes to character. The best part is developing our character is 100% in our control. No matter where our character is today, we can begin making new choices that will strengthen our character now.
Today, we have an opportunity to assess our own character with the My Mirror Character Assessment test.
The My Mirror Character Assessment was built to help us identify and reflect on the areas of character we need to grow in. It is the perfect place to begin your lifelong journey of becoming a leader of character. The key to using this tool is to be honest.
To begin go to MyCharacterTest.com
This sneak peek is just the beginning of the training we have crafted for you and your team. We would love to come alongside you and help to sharpen your team in a platform which best meets the needs of your organization. Click here for more details.