I found <a href=“>this article last week and then proceeded to read every leadership article under the heading.

Good leadership seems particularly undefinable at times while there doesn’t seem to be enough words to truly describe bad leadership.

Number 15 on the list stood out for several reasons. I’d say cowardice is the one trait I can’t bear in a leader. I’ve seen it repeatedly in my career at all levels — everyone keeps his head down and marches along to the beat and no one dares break rank to say that something is wrong. It’s more than disheartening — it’s also dishonest. How can you lead people into precarious situations– let alone into battle — if you can’t be bothered to stand up for what’s right on a boring Monday afternoon?

Courage, valor, honor — all of these high level concepts are disciplines. You practice them everyday when you return the iPod that you found on the street, or you tell your boss that racist jokes are inappropriate, or you stand up for the kid who gets bullied everyday. These virtues are costly. Standing up for what is right will get you into trouble, guaranteed. When everyone else is marching in a straight line and you break the rhythm, you will consistently hear: get on beat! you’re off step get back in line!

Those voices will do everything in their power to drown out the voice that tells you that what’s going on is wrong — don’t listen to them. No matter how they threaten or yell, you’ve got to do the right thing. You’ve got to have chutzpah:
15. Show some chutzpah: Leadership absent courage is a farce. I’m not referring to arrogance or bravado, but real courage. It takes courage to break from the norm, challenge the status quo, seek new opportunities, cut your losses, make the tough decision, listen rather than speak, admit your faults, forgive the faults of others, not allow failure to dampen your spirit, stand for those not capable of standing for themselves, and to remain true to your core values. You can do none of these things without courage. Courage is having the strength of conviction to do the right thing when it would just be easier to do things right.

Bon weekend, loveables! Stay Courageous.

4 Comment on “Chutzpah

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