What do these three scenarios have in common?

  1. A nationally renowned seminar leader known for his success principles and spirituality extends a complimentary invitation to a colleague to attend one of his workshops. Afterwards, the colleague, trying to be helpful, sends some suggestions to the seminar leader on ways to improve the seminar.  The seminar leader receives the suggestions and immediately stops communicating with the colleague all together.
  2. A promising job candidate interviews for two different positions with one of the top leadership development & training companies in the world. This company’s trademark is communication and authentic leadership. Both interviews went well and the candidate was told she’d find out about a second interview within two weeks. Two and a half months pass and still no word, despite numerous inquiry calls and emails from the candidate. After the third month, the candidate receives a cold and impersonal “Dear Applicant” rejection letter, clearly written to fit any position.
  3. Probably the biggest personal empowerment speaker, author and workshop leader in the world also happens to have a staff that treats each other with disdain and disrespect. And what’s more, volunteers who help out during the breakthrough workshops are ordered around and often yelled at by staff members.

Answer: All three scenarios demonstrate a lack of integrity within the individual and/or company.

All too often I see people and/or organizations talking out of both sides of their mouth. They preach one thing and practice another. Isn’t it time accountability goes both ways?

In scenario 1, the seminar leader subscribes to the “do as I say…not as I do” philosophy. His transparency on stage apparently begins and ends on stage.

In scenario 2, the company fails to see the contradiction in its teaching of leadership principles with how job candidates are treated at their own center.

In scenario 3, the famous empowerment leader helps millions of people stand up for themselves and demand respect in their lives…yet quite different principles apply for those who work for her.

Okay, I’m not perfect either and I’ve certainly contradicted myself a time or two.  But I’m also not putting myself out there as the be-all and end-all in leadership and personal development either. I bet these people and organizations weren’t always like this…somehow they just got too big and lost touch with the very principles that made them great in the first place. Such a shame!


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