Easy to deal with

Hollywood has pushed a false image of leaders – extravagant, aggressive, arrogant, smarter than everybody else. Influential leaders in real life are comically far from this type of persona. Chances are, if you fit that description, you’ll end up as a failure, dragging down the organization you’re leading.

Have you ever been in the presence of somebody with whom every interaction is stressful? You must carefully weight every move next to them. If you don’t, they’ll get offended, explode in fits of rage, or become passive aggressive. Now, reverse the roles, imagine you’re that difficult person.

Difficult leaders cut themselves from the bedrock of good decision making – unfiltered truth. Who, in their right mind, wants to share difficult but critical information with them?

It’s difficult to recognize yourself as a toxic leader. You truly believe that you’re doing the right thing.

Here are some signs you may be a toxic leader.

  • Are you quick to reply?

  • Do you jump in the middle of discussions and witness health debates suddenly coming to a halt?

  • Are you easily offended?

  • Are you inflexible?

  • Do you feel better than everyone else?

  • Do you feel invested in a great mission and the end justifies the means?

Often leaders believe that being difficult is going to prevent setting low expectations on a team. They believe only the relational with other people will suffer from their behavior. That’s incorrect; something far more valuable will get lost. Poison will seep into the well of unfiltered truths. In organization with toxic leaders, people work towards minimizing blowbacks instead of optimizing for truth.

Be easy to deal with.

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