Leading by Example

Can you look at your life both at work and at home, and say that others have learned positively from your behaviour this year? According to a new report from the CIPD, the overall quality of management in the UK continues to trail the USA, Germany and other productivity leaders and is one of the key reasons behind the UK’s long-standing productivity weakness. Critically, it highlighted a serious issue of trust in senior leadership.

If we are to lead others more effectively and become trusted role models in our organisations and homes, we need to develop greater integrity in what we think, say and do. Fundamental change in behaviour will only take place when there is a change of thinking at the root level of the mind. In our modern business world, it is therefore imperative that leaders create space to reflect and increase awareness of the deeper patterns behind their behaviours. An agitated mind cannot be an effective mind.

The daily practice of meditation trains us to be still in order to become more aware. It is a direct route to developing emotional maturity and ethical leadership. By shutting the doors of the mind to distraction and immersing ourselves in stillness, we plug into the natural source of guidance deep within us. The racing mind of most leaders is cut off from this source of wisdom and vitality, to the detriment of themselves and those around them.

I recently completed my second 10-day vipassana meditation programme. This is a serious course conducted in complete silence, meditating for 10 hours a day beginning at 4.30 am. Since completing my first course in November 2012, one of the more dramatic outcomes has been complete abstinence from alcohol. I simply lost all desire for it. That’s quite a mind shift coming from a Glaswegian working class family! More gradual benefits from practising vipassana daily are a marked increase in my vitality and clarity of mind. Hopefully, I’ve become a better person too.

According to this latest CIPD report, little has changed in UK management and leadership in 10 years. This calls for a different approach. Meditation supports our growth on a path to greater integrity and wiser decision making. It calms the mind for sure, but by tuning in to a different frequency, we can view what’s happening from a completely different perspective. Connecting with the true self creates fundamental changes in mind set and hence behaviour.
How will you become a better role model next year at work and at home? Its time to think differently about leadership development.

If you want to know more please get in touch.

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