Over the past few months, I have offered insights into the various attributes possessed by leaders who act with character. Each of these character attributes contributes to the leader’s ability to make positive, character-based decisions. One attribute I have not yet explored is self-control. After reviewing various dictionary definitions I’ve landed on the following themes that express the meaning of self-control: the ability to resist or delay an impulse; the ability to control oneself – particularly emotions and desires; and the ability to stop yourself from doing something you want to do, but may not be in your best interests. Continue reading →
The past three blogs have focused on character in leadership based on an assessment of the presence of four universally-accepted moral principles: integrity, responsibility, forgiveness and compassion. These principles are the foundation of the methodology for assessing character that Fred Kiel introduced in his book entitled “Return on Character”. This blog will focus on the importance of compassion as it relates to character-based leadership.
In order to understand the role of compassion in a character-based leader, we can turn to Fred Kiel’s book “Return on Character” where he outlines three common behaviors or attributes that constitute compassion in a leader: empathy, attachment and affection.
Let’s start with empathy. Empathy is broadly defined as the ability to understand the feelings of others. It is an important attribute for leaders to have for many reasons. First of all, a person who demonstrates strong empathy skills focuses on the feelings of others and not just their own feelings. Stephen Covey, author of “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” put “Seek first to understand then to be understood” as habit number five. I think that Covey believed that to honour this habit a person must be able to demonstrate empathy and strong listening skills. Once they establish a deeper understanding of the other person’s point of view, they will be in a much better position to articulate their own thoughts and feelings. When a person senses that you understand what they are feeling, the relationship strengthens. Continue reading →
The past two blogs have focused on the assessment of character using the methodology Fred Kiel introduced in his book entitled “Return on Character”. In the book, character in leadership is based on an assessment of the presence of four universally-accepted moral principles: integrity, responsibility, forgiveness and compassion. We’ve reviewed the impact of responsibility and forgiveness on character. In this blog, we will look at the importance of integrity as it relates to character-based leadership. Continue reading →
There are many ways to measure the degree to which a leader demonstrates positive character and my last blog reviewed the methodology Fred Kiel introduced in his book entitled “Return on Character”. In the book, character in leadership is based on an assessment of the presence of four universally accepted moral principles: integrity, responsibility, forgiveness and compassion.
Last time we explored responsibility. This time we will gain insight into the importance of forgiveness as it relates to character-based leadership. Forgiveness is a powerful characteristic to exhibit as a leader because it has the power to add tremendous strength to relationships. An important truth is that a leader’s success is profoundly influenced by the strength of the relationships. Continue reading →
There are many ways to measure the degree to which a leader demonstrates positive character. In his book entitled “Return on Character”, Fred Kiel measures the character of leaders based on four universally accepted moral principles:
Let’s explore the importance of responsibility to character-based leadership. In his book, Kiel connects the principle of responsibility to two important behaviours: Continue reading →
I have recently been doing some reading on the process people undergo in making decisions. I am fascinated by the number of factors that influence decisions and the impact of these factors. As one would expect, logic and reasoning (assessing the pros and cons), is an important element in the decision making process. What I found intriguing is that people can make decisions that – when objectively analyzed based on the data – are decisions that are difficult to rationalize. Factors such as emotion, pre-existing perceptions and trust play a large role in the decisions we make. Leaders must be aware of these factors and their impact on decisions. In this blog post, I am going to focus on the role of trust in decision making. Continue reading →