As a leader, people are watching you. They’re looking to see how you will respond to difficult circumstances, challenging people, and even success. People want to know how you will respond to what you’re experiencing.
Beyond that, people are also listening. They’re listening to hear what you say, how you say it, and in what tone you say what you say.
Being a leader is difficult because you’re always under a microscope.
You have to step into leadership knowing this. When you do, you’re prepared to understand how your actions influence personal and professional relationships.
I always think of the youth students my wife and I have mentored. We’ve been in youth ministry for over 20 years. That’s an insane amount of time, but we love the students and know we’re making a difference.
These students could be anywhere we are. They’re out and about the town, shopping at the same places, and eating at the same restaurants.
They’re watching us to see how we act outside of a church environment. How we act will impact our influence on our students’ lives.
The same goes for you. Your actions will impact personal and professional relationships. In this article, we will examine the reasons for this and what to watch out for.
The Influence Of A Leader’s Actions On Personal And Professional Relationships
As youth leaders, the actions of Pamela and I impact the relationships we have with our students. Why is this? Because the students see us as leaders in their lives. They know we’re held to a higher standard than their neighbors or friends. We have a responsibility to live out what we teach them. When we don’t, it impacts our relationships.
Here are the things you must watch out for and how they influence your personal and professional relationships.
Following through with your commitments:
You may not think committing to something is an action, but it is. Your verbal confirmation is an audible action that can build or destroy trust.
If you keep making commitments but fail to deliver on those commitments, your relationships will be strained. The people you lead, live with, or interact with will see you as untrustworthy. There’s a broken bond that needs to be fixed.
Make sure you’re fulfilling your commitments. Otherwise, your relationships will see you as untrustworthy.
Controlling your temper:
Leadership is testy. You’re often confronted with emotional decisions that require you to stay calm, cool, and collected in the moment. The same goes for your personal relationships. Emotions can flare, anger can rise, and you can be harsh.
But what happens when you lose your temper? You lose respect with those you lead and do life with. They see your moment of weakness (or maybe it’s your regular attitude) as dangerous or out of control. They see someone who is losing it rather than someone who keeps it together under a challenge.
Correct this! Learn to control your temper. Work on your emotional well-being and control. If you find yourself losing your temper, excuse yourself. If you’ve lost your temper, apologize.
Throwing a temper tantrum disrupts the view of you as a leader.
We’ve all experienced a traffic jam or two, especially those of you who live in big cities like New York, Chicago, or Los Angeles. Traffic can be a nightmare.
You dread the morning commute or going to a meeting. You don’t know whether to leave 20 minutes or an hour early. The traffic could swing either way, and then you’ve just lost time waiting for the meeting to start.
But do you know what those extra minutes of waiting do? It shows that you value the time of the people you’re meeting. You tell them, “You are important. Your time matters. I will inconvenience myself to make sure you feel valued.”
Wow, you’re sending a powerful statement to a business partner, spouse, or friend. You’re telling them they matter, and you considered the value of their time.
When you’re late, you tell others that they don’t matter; you do. Let’s not do that anymore. Let’s make sure we’re telling others we value them by giving them the respect of being on time.
How To Cultivate A Positive Leadership Presence
Do you want to create a positive leadership presence? Of course, you do. It’s an easy thing to create.
You have to make sure that you’re keeping your temper under control. Remember, volatile, hostile leaders push people away.
You have to be committed. Following through on your commitments shows people you mean what you say. This indicates that you’re a person of integrity. You’re someone a person can trust.
You also have to be on time. You show that you value others when you’re on time, not late.
What else can you do to cultivate a positive leadership presence? Think about these things and cultivate your own positive leadership principles.