10 Easy Ways to Measure the Security of Your Leadership

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“A lot of things can happen when you have an insecure leader. None of it very good.”

That bit of wisdom was passed along to me by a wise mentor many years ago, and it has helped to guide my leadership ever since.

The reason for the power of this statement is that a sense of personal security is oil that keeps the machinery of a leader working. If a leader is wracked with insecurity, it won’t simply render them ineffective. It will actually undermine everything they have been attempting to build.

But this raises an important question; “Is there an objective way to tell if you really are a secure leader?”

While there may be no scientifically-verifiable way to know for sure, the following self-evaluation questions can give you a pretty good idea.

  1. If a contribution I made to a project is not publicly acknowledged, do I feel wronged?

  2. Do I feel a hint of jealousy when the accomplishment of a colleague is being celebrated?

  3. If I hear about a meeting that I was not invited to, do I feel concerned about being excluded?

  4. Am I uncomfortable letting someone else lead a meeting when I am technically in charge?

  5. Do I need to be “cc’d” on every email that flows through my department?

  6. Am I easily upset if someone points out ways in which my work could improve?

  7. Do I place my own survival ahead of the team’s mission?

  8. Do I get nervous if I am not hearing people say good things about me?

  9. Is it important that people consider me to be more successful than my predecessor?

  10. Do I feel in any way threatened when I see a younger leader rising through the ranks?

If you said “Yes” to more than half of these questions, chances are you have a concerning level of insecurity in your leadership.

And while there’s no magic wand you can wave to eradicate insecurity, the first step to overcoming these tendencies is through ruthless self-awareness. Keep a list like this handy, review it often, and use it to measure your growth as a secure leader.

Because it’s true; a lot of things can happen when you have an insecure leader.

None of it very good.




the author

Scott Cochrane

Vice President- International, Global Leadership Network. Love Jesus, Nora, Adam & Robin, Amy, Dave, Willow, Olive & Charlie and John, Fiona, Will & Harvey. Lifelong learner.


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