So perhaps the most damaging trait of failed leadership is hubris.
When a leaders exhibits arrogance–bullies and degrades others, especially underlings–then that absolutely destroys the moral fiber of and the employee engagement in the organization.
No, it’s not the salary and benefits, or recognition, or position title, or even the grandness of the mission of the organization itself–although they are all important–but rather, the key ingredient to employee satisfaction is the common sense fundamental of how we treat our people.
People rising or elevated in the organization frequently forget the humble beginnings from whence they and their families likely began.
They see their honor and fat pay check and power–and they start to perhaps think of themselves as (close to) G-d Almighty, Him/Herself.
But it is not their position that makes them in the image of G-d, but how they care for and treat others.
If they shepherd their flocks meekly and with empathy and kindness to all then they emulate G-d, the creator and sustainer.
But when it goes to their heads and they become fat and haughty with themselves and are above everyone and care not for the basic dignity and respect of each individual in their steward then G-d sees and G-d hears the cry of the oppressed, and the mighty will surely fall and hard.
As it says in Isaiah 13:11:
I will punish the world for its evil, the wicked for their sins. I will put an end to the arrogance of the haughty and will humble the pride of the ruthless.
Those who are blessed by G-d with position, money, and power–their challenge is to be gracious and giving with it.
When they “laud it” over others and when they think that they are truly “all that”–rest assured that G-d does not let any tree grow or tower (of Babel) build into the Heavens themselves.
Empathy, kindness, graciousness, and generosity–that is true leadership–and that is when employee engagement, satisfaction, and productivity will bear the mark of the meek and the truly great person and leader. 😉
(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)