In order to be perceived as being successful as a leader we need to be successful in all directions, with our teams, with our peers and also with our boss, and our boss’s boss.
This is an interesting dilemma, as we need different skills and to take actions actions for all three groups. What makes us a successful leader with our followers isn’t always guaranteed to make us a successful with our peers and bosses.
It’s true that such things as honesty and integrity should be appreciated by all, but not true that everything we do will be appreciated by all.
For example, taking a stand against something, this could be against the view of our boss, and whilst this may be popular with our teams, it’s unlikely to be popular with our boss, or our boss’s boss. Or if we take a stand and look to implement an unpopular decision from the company whilst this will make us popular with our boss it is unlikely that we will be popular with our teams.
It’s a truism that we can’t please all of the people all of the time, we can only please some of them some of the time.
Which means at times we need to choose who to please. If we have strong integrity, then we will probably focus on trying to do the right thing, but the right thing for whom.
This can be a difficult balancing act, as we could end up losing the support of either our peers, our bosses or our teams, non of which is good for long term success.