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Get your values and your character right and rest of leadership is a matter of details. After all, freedom isn't just in what you make happen, it's also in what you let happen.
Furthermore, have character trait you are acting on be a solution to your audience's needs.
Put character/solution into soup of a results-challenge and then simply observe what cooks up. In other words, in a situation calling for results, act on character trait you want to emphasize — in this case, being always ready to forgive — and observe results.
Of course, with this trait, your effort won't work unless there are hard feelings in air, but finding someone exhibiting such feelings shouldn't be difficult — if you're leading well. If your leadership challenges don't lead to some people feeling overburdened, you're not challenging them enough.
Take action with a group of people or an individual. You might say something like, "I know we've had hard feelings, and if there's blame to be handed out for causing them, you can look to me. But, as first step in going after new results, let's start with a fresh slate."
When focusing on this particular character trait, it's important to avoid setting up conditions. Saying, for example, "If I do this, I expect you to do that" depreciates trait. Character should exist without conditions, in you and for you, regardless of outside influences such as other people's opinions. Otherwise, they wouldn't be lasting character traits, but changeable sensibilities.
When we're dealing with character and results, we can't expect to force results. Let them grow naturally out of interaction. It's like putting a seed crystal into a supersaturated solution. Given proper solution and right tension, you get an organic eruption of crystals. That's why I emphasize that you should understand and acquire power of being be an observer.
Focus on putting trait into action as a solution for needs of your cause leaders in order to increase results.
Remember, trait of always being ready to forgive is just one of many you can work on. No matter which trait you're developing, use process I've just described to manifest it for results.
In long run, important thing about leadership is not what we achieve but who we become in our achievements. A focus on our character, not only for sake of character itself but also for kinds of results character engenders, will make that becoming a treasure of our lives.
2005 © The Filson Leadership Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
The author of 23 books, Brent Filson's recent books are, THE LEADERSHIP TALK: THE GREATEST LEADERSHIP TOOL and 101 WAYS TO GIVE GREAT LEADERSHIP TALKS. He has been helping leaders of top companies worldwide get audacious results. Sign up for his free leadership e-zine and get a free white paper: "49 Ways To Turn Action Into Results," at www.actionleadership.com