dimanche 26 décembre 2010

Principles of Good Leadership (Part 1 of 3)

1. Good Leadership is not an EGO-TRIP.

The important distinction lies in the direction of one’s flow of energy. If that flow is focused inward upon the ego, in the thought of one’s own importance, it becomes contractive and limiting. If, on the other hand, it is a radiation outward from one’s self it becomes expansive. The more powerful that outward flow, the more magnetic it will be and ultimately, the more self-transforming.

  • Self-importance in a leader is self-defeating.
  • The spirit of a group reflects the spirit of its leadership.
  • The ego can be either a hindrance or an aid to creativity. It is an aid if its energy flow is toward the job to be done, rather than inward upon itself.
  • Leadership is not an ego-game.

2. Good Leadership means RESPONSIBILITY.

  • See leadership not in terms of glamor but of responsibility.
  • Be not so much concerned with the opinions of others as with the truth.
  • Be concerned not with praise or blame nor with your personal reactions but with action, with getting the job done.
  • Concentrate on the longer rhythms in any project, not on temporary ups and downs.
  • Be as ready to accept responsibility for failure as for success.
  • Acceptance of responsibility means accepting the duty to find creative answers even when convention says there are none.


  • The true leader puts his personal wishes last, not first.
  • A leader should ask himself in every circumstance, not “What would I like?” but rather, “What do I feel is needed?” and “What is right?”
  • For every problem a good leader should ask himself, “What is trying to happen here?” One’s skill as a leader is demonstrated by his ability to tune in IMPERSONALLY to the flow of events.
  • Leadership requires openness to the feelings of others and not insensitivity to them in the name of “getting on with the job.” To a major extent, their welfare is the job.

4. Leadership means SERVICE.

  • See leadership as only a job, like any other.
  • Leadership means giving service, not receiving it.
  • Humility is more important in a leader than any medal for achievement.
  • Humility is self-honesty.
  • See God as the doer. View your work as service to him.

5. Good Leadership means LOYALTY.

  • Work with people as they are, not as you would like them to be.
  • Work with things as they are, not as you would like them to be.
  • Be patient. Understand that it takes time to bring people to new points of view.
  • To win loyalty, be loyal yourself, first.
  • To win love, first give love, yourself.
  • In correcting someone, consider first his readiness to hear what you have to say.
  • Be loyal to your own, first.


  • The wise leader is more concerned with what IS than what ought to be.
  • He is concerned more with what will work than with mere opinions, even his own.
  • He is more concerned with truth than with being thought right.
  • A wise leader convinces by sound reason, or by magnetism of his own conviction but not by the mere outward authority of his position or past experience.
  • Discriminating supporters need to be cultivated, not merely impressed.
  • Be wary of supporting your proposals on intuitive grounds alone. Try to present your ideas in such a way as to invite intelligent response.
  • Always be guided by common sense.
  • Common sense is the willingness to learn from experience.

7. The Importance of FLEXIBILITY.

  • Be willing to admit your mistakes. Remember: truth alone wins out in the end.
  • Keep your ideas of perfection fluid. Remember that perfection in human behavior is not a thing but a direction.
  • Adapt your actions to reality.
  • Deal afresh with each situation as it arises. See it as a thing in itself.
  • Don’t make too many rules lest they destroy the spirit of your enterprise.
  • Be open to other points of view. They might prove better than your own.
  • Learn to be centered in your inner self and at rest.

8. The need for ACTION, not TALK.

  • Leadership means action – not merely good ideas for action.
  • Don’t waste so much energy in planning that you have none left over for acting on your plans.
  • Action generates creativity.
  • Almost any action is preferable to prolonged inactivity born of indecision.

9. Giving SUPPORT.

  • Try always to strengthen your subordinates in their work, in their creativity and in their qualities of leadership.
  • Encourage them in their projects.
  • Allow them to learn by their mistakes.
  • Be willing to compromise. Don’t ask more of people than they are to deliver or, if you do so, stretch their horizons gradually. Invite their support, don’t commandeer it.
  • Accept only as much authority as they are willing to give you.
  • Never assign any job that you wouldn’t be willing to do yourself.

10. Work with people’s STRENGTHS.

  • Work to strengthen a subordinate’s best qualities rather than harping on his worst. You will accomplish more by encouraging others than by belittling them.
  • Work more with your organization’s strengths than with its weaknesses. Channel more energy to those people in it who are in tune with what you are doing than to those whose tendency is to resist you.
  • Don’t invest a disproportionate amount of energy in addressing negative situations. Strengthen the positive side rather than any negative energies that exist.
  • Don’t allow subordinates to offer merely negative criticisms. They should offer solutions when they point out problems.
  • Encourage the doers under you, not the mere talkers. Never court popularity for yourself. Be concerned with issues and with principles.
  • Never speak from your own emotions or private prejudices but always from a sense of justice, fairness and truth.

11. What is TRUE SUCCESS?

  • A true leader is neither attached to success nor afraid of failure.
  • Success is not so much the completion of a specific project, as the energy that goes into completing it. Projects can fail but never the energy itself. A good leader works as much as possible through others, not directly himself.
  • He is willing to compromise in little matters in order to win on the larger issues. The outcome of any project always reveals, however subtly, the kind of energy that went into its development.
  • A leader who leads, truly, and never drives others, will create in his subordinates the most constructive possible attitudes and will ensure the best possible long range results for his and their labors. The true success of an undertaking depends more than anything else on the spirit of the people involved in it. The spirit of those people is a reflection, always, ofthe spirit of its LEADER.

This article written by John S. Jones, Grand High Priest, Grand Chapter State of NY Royal Arch Masons 2007.

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