Monday, 19 march 2018 | Redacción CEU
The best leaders are not the ones who know how to do everything or the ones who raise the voice higher. They are not the ones who impose control with strength, nor the ones who more than as a boss behave as a friend. Good leaders are not only the visionaries, the guiding forces, the magnificent rulers and the great communicators, they are also the ones who inspire their employees by example. When the captain of the ship prioritizes issues such as the arrival of the merchandise to the port on time over the security of the occupants of the vessel, it is not surprising that its crew members do not show even the slightest hint of loyalty and that, in some cases, it is not even present among them yet. Whether on the high seas or on solid ground, the ethical commitment of managers has a real reflection on the members of their organization.
Corruption could occupy its own section in the journals. There are numerous financial scandals that capture the covers of newspapers and open the news of half the world. In the business world there are frequents cases of power abuse, tax evasion, cartels creation, price manipulation or fraud. In other occasions, although the techniques used by some companies are not explicitly illegal, can be, in turn, questionable. A good example of them are techniques like “click-baiting” or the diffusion of fake news that are so trendy in digital media. All these practices show that for some executives economic goals prevail over ethical issues.
Managers who do not present a strong commitment to values like honesty, justice, respect, equality or integrity will find with difficulty these strengths boosted among the members of their organization. There is no point in the extensive and meticulous elaboration of a deontological code in a company, if nobody ever speaks again about it in the performance of the daily routine. Its utility is even minor, if in addition these precepts are not only forgotten, but they are faced in the opposite way. Among other tasks, bosses have the important mission of promoting the culture of values of their organizations. This task is not to enumerate the ideal characteristics of their workers and the forbidden behaviors in their companies in front of the employees themselves. Leaders embody the figures that guarantee that in their companies things are being done well and the first step to do this is serving with their example.
Employees are the reflection of their bosses
Many times unintentionally, the actions of the bosses impose a pattern of behavior to their employees. In most cases, they are the true reflex of their behavior. If the bosses themselves do not pay attention to some issues, who is going to consider them important? If the bosses themselves do things wrong, why is the rest going to do them well? Many employees continue to keep their values unaltered regardless of the atmosphere that surrounds them, but in an environment overshadowed by mala praxis, it is likely that borders are transgressed easily, the own workers may not even understand that some specific behaviors are not right. On other occasions, these upstanding workers are pressured to act against their own principles whether it is due to the environment or even the bosses themselves.
If we take into account that we are moving towards an increasingly flexible, specialized and independent work model where employees have a greater presence, weight and responsibility in the decision-making, the exemplary behavior of the leader is even more necessary because the employees will be those who, in many cases, take over, drive their own projects and even give voice to the company backed by the digital media. In addition, the scenario where they work on will be increasingly complex and confusing because its borders are blurred and it is in full digital transformation.