Some HR professionals and other leaders can’t resist the temptation to use the power they have in destructive ways. At times, the power, real or perceived, goes straight to their head.

Now let’s look at some of the kind you do want to be like.

Human being Always greets everyone with at least a smile and a nod as he walks by.
Small talk Can make small talk with either the custodian or the company president.
Turf Turf has little meaning to him. Will cross any line to resolve a problem.
Walks the talk She knows that one of the strongest tools she has is the positive image she presents to the world.
Integrity Don’t even think about asking her to do something unethical.

What’s Their Secret?

They are successful, because they made sure that when they stepped into the job, that they had the official backing of the CEO to go anywhere, anytime; to address any issue.

They tell the CEO what he or she needs to hear, not just what they want to hear.

They don’t just know the organization’s ethics code, they live it.

They absolutely believe that most employees:

• Want to work.
• Want to do a good job.
• Want to be commended for the work they do.
• Want to be trusted.
• Would come to work even if conditions deteriorated.

Managing or Leading

Sal F. Marino, chairman emeritus of Penton Media Inc. The following, in part, are his definitions of the differences between leaders and managers. I think you will agree that these are great!

Managers solve Leaders involve
Managers require Leaders inspire
Managers preach Leaders teach
Managers detect Leaders respect
Managers control Leaders extol
Managers yank Leaders thank
Managers follow rules Leaders make them
Managers dread failure Leaders learn from it

Here is my favorite from his list.

Managers do things right. Leaders do the right thing.

Does a first glance at the list above suggest that both are doing the same thing? Look again.

Typically, “doing things right” means doing it “by the book.” Doing the “right thing” isn’t always in the book. The right thing may be contrary to common sense or public opinion. It may be in violation of the rules. Heck, it may mean throwing out the book.

Here is an example of doing the right thing. Some years ago, an employee of a Washington state company and four members of his family were seriously injured in an out-of-state auto accident. Because their injuries prevented them from being able to ride home in a car, another method had to be found to get them home. Ambulances would have been prohibitively expensive for them.
So what was the right thing to do? Simple.

The company chartered a plane to fly them back home. It was not in the rulebook…but it was the right thing to do.

More on this subject later. Take care!

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