Thoughts on Leadership: The Golden Rule for Leaders

The Golden Rule, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you," is one of the first things we learn as children. It turns out that this recommended approach of consideration, dignity of purpose and concern for fellow people, when practiced consistently, pays off. For leaders, the Golden Rule is more than a recommended practice. It’s a requirement.

In "Lead or Get Off the Pot! The Seven Secrets of a Self-made Leader," Pat Croce explains: "The magnitude of the Golden Rule’s importance is complemented by its simplicity of execution. All you have to do, really, is think of how you would like to be treated in any given situation, and then act accordingly."

It sounds simple, but experience will show that practicing the Golden Rule is quite difficult. To overcome this it's important to try consistently. Make it a part of your everyday behavior.

Embrace the Golden Rule as your philosophy and practice the "Ten Commandments of Service." Croce says "It will take hard work and discipline to make these commandments important in your own life but they will bring satisfying results once you do. Not only will you firmly establish your leadership position in the minds of your staff, family and friends, but you will be setting an example for those who share your vision.”

Here they are:

  1. Hello…and good-bye: These two touch points are central to customer service. Your greeting and your send-off will have a definite impact on your customer's decision to return.
  2. First-name basis: Calling people by name is a guaranteed way to make them feel important.
  3. Listen, listen, listen: Listening is the most accurate, quickest and most effective way to understand people.
  4. Communicate clearly: Be clear and concise whether you’re giving orders or taking them. Allow no room for misunderstandings or miscommunication.
  5. Be neat, clean and fit: Your appearance is the first impression you’re going to make in every new situation.
  6. Be prompt and professional: How you treat time reveals more about you to others than any of the words you say when explaining why you were late.
  7. Be positive: When you control your thoughts, you have a better chance of controlling your world.
  8. Give compliments: Everyone wants to feel valued, appreciated and important.
  9. Have fun: A sense of humor will make any difficult situation better.
  10. Do it now: Always have a sense of urgency to serve others and the rewards will come back to you with equal speed.

What are you waiting for?

Right now is the best time to lead the charge and check off one more action steps toward the realization of your vision. No matter how you serve your staff members, family members, friends and customers, your reputation will develop based on your actions and your character. Apply this 10-point strategy to all your business activities and even to your everyday life. It will not fail you.