“A person of integrity only goes “against” someone who is destroying something good, and then is only against the destruction, not the person himself.” Dr. Henry Cloud, in his book “Integrity”, speaks of a person of grace.
Grace is the extending of favor to others even when they have done nothing to deserve such favor. A leader with grace understands for others to reach the level of standards set, will at times require grace in the form of training, coaching, encouragement, and empowerment, as well as other resources to assist them in reaching standards and higher levels. “Leaders without grace set the standard and do nothing to help people meet it. Then when they don’t meet it the leader turns on them as adversaries.” Dr. Henry Cloud (Integrity pg 85)
As a parent of grace empowers a child toward achievement, so a leader of grace will empower his/her charges. Not to do so will stifle effective production, and personal growth. People being held down, back, or at bay will eventually rebel. In most cases, they will leave. Many leaders have “run away” some of their best employees and workers because they use demand instead of grace.
Grace is not removing the standard. Grace is allowing more time and resources to assist the individual in reaching the standard. It is understood that grace can only carry so far. There are times and situations that require assisting an individual to move on. However, this should also be done with grace.
Cloud relates this story of a man about a former boss. “She was a tough one, but I always felt she wanted me to do well. She wanted me to win, even when she was hard on me.” The goal of every leader should be to leave behind a trail of people who have experienced grace and are stronger, better, more efficient for knowing the leader. People of grace always leave people better off than before knowing them – even when they’re getting nothing in return.
A leader of grace is one who not only holds to the standard, but helps others rise to and above the standard for the individual and the team through positive resourcing.
Are you a leader of grace or demand? Grace will always get you farther and lead to the more efficient and productive organization. Being a leader of grace is being a person of integrity. Be a leader of grace in every area of your life. I’m striving to. Will you?
George Yates is a Life Purpose Coach and Church Health Strategist assisting individuals, churches, and organizations in fulfilling their God-given purpose in life. Visit SonC.A.R.E. Ministries online and see the leadership resources available.