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When Leaders Are Wrong

As a younger leader, I made a unilateral decision that proved to be a poor one.

I felt the need to prove myself.

In my mind I needed to demonstrate my capability to make good decisions and make things happen.

I thought I was coming more into line with the organization, when in fact I was trading an acceptable product for one that was less flexible, the cause of daily hassle, and would never fully replace the old one.

At the time it seemed good to me, and counsel from informed colleagues may have identified the troubles we ended up having as a result of my decision.

But I didn’t want to hear it and I didn’t ask for counsel.

I was the leader and I was making the decision.

That experience taught me that a leader truly proves themselves by reaching out to others, gaining wisdom, and making an informed - and potentially even group - decision.

Regardless of the position a person is called to fill, his or her judgment is not to be regarded as unerring, either by the individual or their followers.

Entrusted responsibilities make it far more important for authentic leaders to be free from all egotism and willing to receive counsel.

Authentic leaders do not seek to embrace too much authority; for authentic leadership is not a call to be a ruler, but to plan and counsel with colleagues and teammates.

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