Steven Covey’s seminal book 7 Habits of Highly Effective People transformed the landscape for personal and corporate leadership. This post is a tongue-in-cheek
rant homage to Covey with the seven habits that make for inept leadership.
1. Procrastinate – Delay announcing anything until there is a very tight window to implement. Creating pressure with impossible deadlines spurs creativity and keeps them on their toes. Knowing they work late regularly to meet your demanding constraints reminds them who is in charge.
2. Begin with what’s best for you – As the acknowledged leader, what is good for you has to be good for the them, right? So focus on yourself. Take credit and accept the praise for a job well done. They know if you get a better job you may just take them with you.
3. Put first the new priority – Your ideas are all great and numerous. Be sure the team executes all of them equally, because each one is supremely important. Focusing on a few things is weakness. Your job is to make everything a top priority and their job is to implement, well, everything.
4. Think Win/Lose – There are winners in the world. They are the ones with big congregations, twitter follower lists, and even bigger book deals. So make sure that in any comparison you win. If you are not the winner, you are one of the nameless losers.
5. Seek first to be Understood – In communication, the most important thing is for your
underlings followers to know what you think. How can they know what to do if you don’t tell them? Always speak first. Seek to understand others only if there is a luxury of time in your day, which there isn’t.
6. Suppress – Cooperation on a team usually means they are plotting against the leader, so suppress that. Keep everyone in silos, unaware of what others are doing and the talents they possess.
7. Sharpen the tongue – There are always those with questions about your strategy or methods. They must learn to stop questioning you so practice your
mocking witty responses. Correct others with sarcasm and condescension. A great way to put critics in their place is with shame and personal attacks, preferably from the platform. They’ll quickly learn that questioning you is a personal attack and as such, merits one.
That’s my take. What would you put on the list?