We Teach What We Need to Learn
A good friend of mine who is a life coach is fond of saying "We teach what we most need to learn." I have found that to be true not just in a metaphysical sense but also in leadership as well.
I once had a boss who always brought every topic back to patient safety or ethics. We were all shocked when we found that as a nurse she diverted pain medications from patients(for her own use/abuse). Not only was she putting patients at risk; but little is more unethical, in my opinion.
Ever notice how micromanagers often point out that fault in others or declare how much they hate to be micromanaged?
It seems the most obstinate and rigid supervisors are the ones who wonder why their subordinates can't adapt to changes; of course they mean only the sort of change they endorse.
I recently had an encounter with a leader who connives and cuts people with her words. She enjoys seeing others wince. Yet she appeared mortified and deeply hurt when she was taken to task for inappropriate behavior.
It is a truism that if you see a certain behavior everywhere or ascribe certain motives to others, you might do well to examine yourself. To be a great leader, employee, colleague or individual it helps to look in the mirror periodically; but especially when you are incensed or deeply bothered by someone else.
Triggers and preoccupations often tell us more about ourselves than they do about others.