Gospel Truth for Leaders
By [http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Marlene_Caroselli/332693]Marlene Caroselli
According to the Gospel of Luke 6:31), when Jesus preached his Sermon on the Plain, he asked his followers to treat one another as they wished to be treated themselves. You need not be religious to understand and apply this exhortation in your everyday life. This profound message of being other-centered carries weight for today's leader--no matter what the circumstances, where the leadership is needed, or how small the followership.
Treat others as you wish to be treated yourself. The mono- and duo-syllabic words work. They are simple, honest, and psychologically insightful. Integrity is embedded in them. So powerful are they, that they have been transformed into the Golden Rule, by which millions of people live their lives.
There is no doubt about Jesus' ability to influence others. In fact, influencing others is a daily occurrence for most of us. It's much, much harder, though, to influence with integrity, which is what Jesus and centuries of other great leaders have done.
A QUESTION OF CHOICES
Whether you persuade for a living or you simply "sell" your ideas in the normal course of learning and living and working, you have already discovered influence techniques that work. Persuaders, in effect, are sellers. And vice versa. If you merely wish to improve the influence techniques that help you persuade others to your point of view, you can find numerous guidelines and primers and recommendations.
One reason ethical persuasion is such a studied topic lies in the many possible definitions of key words, like "integrity." Is it, as the dictionary denotes, a question of honesty? Is it a matter of sincerity or of uprightness, as the dictionary also suggests? Would you perhaps equate integrity with sound moral principles? If so, what exactly are those principles?
Some people regard integrity as the decision to live according to the Golden Rule: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." Is this your belief as well? And what if you were seeking to measure your degree of integrity, as well as define it? Would you assess your actions as ethical ones if they brought improvement to existing situations? If not, what gauge would you use? The choices for determining what integrity means are multiple and mingled--they overlap with many other factors.
THE VALUES-DRIVEN CAREER
In the simplest sense, "integrity" means living according to specified values. But, of course, simplicity is usually and deceptively complex. Living by specified values involves numerous ramifications and interpretations. One workable definition of integrity involves ever-widening circles. The more integrity you demonstrate, the more widespread the benefits to others.
In other words, when you act with integrity, you are widening the sphere of influence, you are using power tools to achieve powerful benefits for those who "buy" your concepts or your commodities.
If your actions are taken for your own advantage exclusively, then you are following a narrow moral code, one that places your needs above all others. You no doubt operate within the letter of the law but perhaps not within the spirit of the unwritten laws that govern our behavior as human beings. If your actions are self-serving, you are not concerned with serving others. Consequently, your ethical influence is limited.
On the other hand, when your actions benefit other people, you are operating from a higher-level moral code; you are living by, and influencing others with, generally accepted principles of correctness rather than your own interpretation of specific rules.
Robert Frost once wrote that one could do worse than be a swinger of birches. Using the exhortation the Bible--treat others as you wish to be treater--you can be even better than a swinger of birches. You can be an effective leader.
Dr. Marlene Caroselli writes frequently on business/career/and self-growth topics. You can reach her at [mailto:email@example.com]firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about the quarterly newsletter that enhances creativity and critical thinking.
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Gospel-Truth-for-Leaders&id=9708039] Gospel Truth for Leaders