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Valuable Persuasive Leadership Lesson: What Not to Do

Latest political news reports Donald Trump is furious that his former GOP rivals have withdrawn pledges to support him during the November elections.

“They broke their word.  In my opinion, they should never be allowed to run for public office again because what they did is disgraceful.” Trump said among a rally of supporters.

Here lies an important lesson on leadership: people are watching leaders all of the time. They are waiting for the moment that you lose your composure because something went wrong.  The vast majority appear to look for an opportunity to say that you’re a hothead or a whiner (Remember almost 10 years ago when Hillary Clinton cried about losing the nomination??).

In this case, Donald Trump came through.  Is it wrong for someone to retract their word?  They did agree to support whoever the nominee is.  I grew up believing that your word is your bond.  However, everyone does not live up to those standards AND–and this is a big and- people’s views and opinions change.  I believe when a person makes a pledge, it was in good faith that “I will be the nominee and I want to be supported.” It was “do unto others as I would have them do unto me.”. Donald Trump is holding them to their promise, but not in the most effective way.

Effective leadership doesn’t call people out.  Good leadership must lead without pressure tactics and embarrassment (though plenty of times, my mother embarrassed me in the grocery store for attempting to go against what we had discussed as “appropriate behavior” at home).  My point is, let this be a lesson when things don’t go your way.  Those who were called out are no more “moved” to stand before the world and pledge their support.  In fact, the opposite is bound to happen: somebody’s making a phone call saying “See…I knew I made the right decision to pull back my pledge.”

In fact, Donald Trump just gave them exactly what they wanted.

About Dr. Roslyn Ashford

Dr. Roslyn L. Ashford is a true optimist with a passion for mentoring youth and empowering people to manifest their dreams. Her penetrating conversations have been shared by inspired people from around the globe. She is an Associate Publisher on the staff of Faith-filled Family Magazine and a member of the Atlanta Writers Club.

Roz is a Christian writer and now author of a memoir, The Sink before the Swim. She loves to sing and direct the Inspirational choir at her church, as well as travel and spend time with family and friends.

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