It sounds so simple. So easy. We're taught to do it from the time we are "forced" to share with other kids at pre-school. That same mantra flows through our formative years and into our working life.
When facing a difficult situation, just do the right thing. No problem, right? After all, we're leaders, so we always make the right decisions. (epic eye roll here)
But seriously, we do, don't we?
You always have the chance to do the right thing.
Not So Fast
I think we can agree that difficult decisions are not all the same. Some can be hurtful but necessary. Others will have a winner and a loser...and sometimes we can not avoid having someone lose.
We are even faced with decisions that may derail our own career temporarily because we can no longer support the behavior of the leaders in our organizations.
What often starts with so much promise...all of a sudden...isn't so clear.
Until the right thing comes undone.
As leaders we strive for many of the same things: for our teams to trust us, to be known as someone who makes "good" decisions even when they are the hard ones, and above all to be an example of how the work can be done well while still caring about people.
By the way, if these aren't at the top of your list, I'd love to hear what is.
When those difficult choices come up, the team is relying on us to do the right thing. We may be filled with doubt. We may be concerned about how our decision will "look" in the eyes of others. Even with our best intentions, it can be so confusing.
I look inside myself, is this the right thing?
How About You
They say that leadership is a lonely place. Take a deep breath...and accept that they're right.
Is this the right thing? I don't know.
I'd love to hear from you.