Leadership by Example

Published by MBA Skool Team, Published on May 22, 2011

Being a leader is an important role any individual would assume in a company as he has to get the most of his subordinates. The work ethics and the way he conducts himself will have a major impact on employees and will also push them harder to perform. So in HR Jargon we refer to such abilities of an individual as the one who "Leads by example". Leading by example means the individual should be of very high integrity so that he can earn the respect of others and also not just frame the rules for others but also follow them himself. If he does not follow what he preaches then he does not fall in this category.

Leading by Example

A leader need not be strict task master in order to be effective in the organization. There could be cases that a leader who is a hard taskmaster neither may nor be liked by his subordinates. So a leader should always carry everyone along with him in order to be considered a successful one. The subordinates should take the pride of working under you and that is the true success of your leadership abilities.

Now in the current work environment which comprises of largely a young workforce, the leadership traits of the past may not hold good. Employees would not like to be dictated on what they should do and what they shouldn't. The current generation is pretty vocal and the leader should also listen to them, and admit the mistakes rather than confront them when they are genuinely mistaken. This would actually increase their acceptability and result is a great relationship with their team mates. The trust and the respect gained out of such an attitude is ever lasting.

There are a few successful examples of leaders who have not just grown their company but also ensured that they have left an everlasting impression on their subordinates. The likes of Narayan Murthy, K V Kamath, and Jack Welch are some of the leaders who have led by example. They are still talked about for their leadership skills not just by the immediate people they worked with but by the entire institution which they once led.

Leadership as a word looks a very simple but when a person actually assumes it is a very difficult position to be in. The person is always in the limelight and every move of his is carefully scrutinized. When you want your subordinates to function in a particular manner, the leader himself should adopt such a style of functioning and this is the true hallmark of "Leadership by example" abilities.

Being approachable and friendly to everyone is a necessity and should happen in all situations. There could be cases wherein the leader might have to reprimand a person but the same should not be carried forward and it should be communicated to the subordinate that it is for his own good. The team which the leader leads will want to perform only if you give them a reason and provided they respect you for what you have done. Earning respect from his employees is the benchmark for a leader. All these attributes a leader can attain through leading by example.


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