As we discussed last week trainers are all in a position to lead and influence their organizations. If you are willing to accept that reality and take action to lead then I will guarantee you two things:
- You will be rewarded for your efforts.
- You will encounter critics and come under fire for your efforts.
You will be a target for those that are afraid of progress. Progress and change takes work and therefore it is easier to keep doing what we have been doing. Unwillingness to advance ourselves and our programs however, puts officers lives at risk.
You will also come under fire from those that are afraid that somehow you will ‘get all the glory’. True leaders are not in it for the glory. They are in it for the betterment of the organizations and the great people within that organization. (I would highly recommend you read Good to Great and Good to Great and the Social Sectors by Jim Collins and Lead Without a Title by Robin Sharma.)
The following is an excerpt from a Robin Sharma’s blog and offers some great information on leadership and dealing with the critics:
LEADERSHIP & CRITICS
One of the challenges for anyone dedicated to expressing their leadership best is dealing with the chattering voices of naysaying critics. As a matter of fact, the more brightly you shine in your work and the more quickly you innovate and the more excellent you become, the more foulmouthed critics you will attract. It’s just part of the game. Emerson said it brilliantly: “Great people are always misunderstood.”
Here some key insights to help you fly in your career (and within your life), in the face of criticism:
#1: To lead is to often be unpopular. Leadership isn’t a popularity contest. Leadership is about having the bravery to do what’s right versus what’s easy. That attracts criticism. Why? Because people don’t like change. And they don’t want to change. To truly lead is to disrupt the way things were-and are (in an effort to make things better). And rather than having the openness and courage to embrace the change, most people would rather shoot the messenger, in an effort to preserve the status quo.
#2: Critics Can Serve You. Sometimes, there is some truth to what your critics are saying. Smart leaders have the intelligence to discern the difference between the misguided ramblings of those seeking to knock them down and negative feedback that has truth beneath it. Each of us can get to a whole new level of excellence by improving our weaknesses.
#3: You Can Create More Value Amid Your Critics than With Your Fans. Yes, moving your closely cherished vision/mission/ideals/goals forward in the face of people throwing stones (or even simply laughing) at you is hard work. But, ultimately, doing what you believe to be right/good/important surrounded by critics is more valuable than doing all that alongside your supporters. Why? Because the critics are resisting what you are trying to change. And if you can positively influence them (even a few of them), then you’ve advanced your mission much more significantly that preaching to the converted.
Just a reminder that until the end of August I am donating $10.00 from every copy of W.I.N. Volumes 1 and 2 and If I Knew Then: Life Lessons From Cops on the Street sold through Warrior Spirit Books to the ILEETA Scholarship Fund to help send trainers like yourself to the ILEETA Conference in April. To take advantage of bulk discounts for orders of 10 books or more contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.