The Leadership Mirror
The Wisdom of Sirach 10:2 As goes the leader of a people, so also are his officials, and all the inhabitants of a city will reflect its ruler. (OSB)
As a leader, self-reflection can be difficult. How do you know when you are off track or moving in the wrong direction? Are you seeing yourself as you truly are? Where are your blindspots?
Those you lead can show you. Not with words, but with their behavior.
What do you admire in people? What actions irritate you? If you see them among those you lead there is a good chance they are part of your character.
This is a scary truth, but helpful. Only by seeing the reality of ourselves can we change.
Let me give an example that you may relate with. I am a father of three boys and regardless of my desire to be their leader, it is part of the job description. They will follow for good or bad.
One behavior that upsets me about my boys is how often they irrationally yell at one another when another wrongs them. Both their mother and I repeatedly correct them but it has been the results have been temporary.
Shortly after I read this verse one event occurred where I caught myself yelling irrationally at one or more of my boys. The mirror of their behavior should have warned me about this, but I failed to look.
Now I am seeking calmer tones and words when the boys behave in upsetting ways. Hopefully I don't walk away from this mirror and forget what I looked like.
This principle may be glaringly true in family life, but any area where you lead or have significant influence this mirror provides a clear reflection of our selves.