Sometimes you hear a quote and it kinda makes sense, but it’s not until some event or incident happens that you really get it.
One of those quotes is from Publius Syrus, spoken over 2000 years ago.
Today, as we see the Coronavirus crisis become more and more critical we are seeing good leaders come to the fore. Those who step up, take control, take action and look to stem the crisis, people like Andrew Cuomo Governor of New York.
Whereas others just stand and stare, looking like a deer trapped in the headlights.
The true test of leadership is how you handle yourself in a crisis, not how you handle things when they are going well.
So how can you tell who are the good leaders if you don’t them operate in a crisis?
One indicator for me is actually, how do they operate when things are going well.
Do they stand back and give their teams the credit, do they let their teams have the opportunities to lead to get some experience.
Or do they hog the spotlight and talk about how well they are doing.
When things are going well do they still take precautions, do they still hope the good times will continue but put plans in place in case they go bad?
Are they open and honest? If they don’t show integrity when things are going well, then why would you expect them to change when things start to go awry and they are put under intense pressure.
Good leadership is often the difference between success and failure.
Good leadership prepares its teams and followers for the storm.
Good leadership is decisive, it takes the tough action in a timely matter. You do need to be careful that they don’t act like fools and just rush in, but once the evidence is clear then you have to act.
Good leaders don’t worry about their popularity and how making the necessary decisions, the tough decisions will make them look.
Leadership is not a popularity contest, and even if it is, failing to take action and provide guidance in times of crisis is not a good look.