Are You Believable

Greetings Leaders

I always thought the purpose of news organizations was to report the news rather than make the news. It is usually not a good thing when one of them becomes the lead story. Fox News was recently the headline grabber when it settled its defamation case with Dominion Voting Systems for a reported three-quarters of a billion dollars. Even in the news business that is more than chump change. There might be an even greater cost to Fox News in this case. They breached a trust as a news organization and will suffer the loss of credibility – from reporting so-called facts which were not true. Who knows what the long-term impact of that may be.

There is a well-proven business and life principle operating here. “If you don’t believe the messenger, you won’t believe the message.” It seems obvious for Fox News and others in the news industry, but it is just as relevant for you in your work as a leader.

To lead others, you must first be believable as a messenger before you can expect any of your messages to be accepted and followed. If you are inconsistent in delivering on your commitments, people will take much of what you say with a grain of salt… as they should. You will not be seen as credible enough to follow.

Before heading off to work, you may be like others who spend some time pondering their to-do list of meetings and other activities for the day. Let me suggest a slight change in routine to keep this crucial principle top of mind. Add a personal credibility checklist to your daily preparation on occasion. That is, ask yourself questions such as:

  • What might I be doing that would cause people not to trust me?
  • How might I be unintentionally misleading them?
  • In what ways might I be seen as a proverbial organizational “spin doctor” vs. someone who is genuine and authentic?

Whatever questions you ask, just make sure you are assessing your believability with others.  Your credibility as a leader is like cash flow to a business or funding to a nonprofit. Without it you are dead in the water. With an abundance of it, you have a much better chance of leading others to accomplish extraordinary things.

Lead On!

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