Do You Lead as a Super Hero or as a Human?

I rushed for 2 weeks to meet a deadline. It was a great opportunity to take part in a project, and I put all else on hold. At the end of 2 weeks, I found myself rushing to catch up invoicing, bill paying, and everything else that had taken a short term back seat.

One bill had come inserted in an envelope. I had pulled it out, and set the envelope aside. When I got ready to pay the bill, I realized that I needed to make a copy of the invoice to send back with the check. I made the copy, folded it up, inserted it into the envelope and checked that the address was showing in the window. I inserted the check, stamped it, and mailed it.

A few days passed. I went to the mailbox and pulled out an envelope from these folks. I could not figure out why they were sending me something. Had they not gotten my check? Had it passed a reminder in the mail? I didn’t think I was late paying.

When I opened the envelope, I discovered that my check was enclosed. Then I realized that I had mailed it to myself. The address in the envelop window had been my own.

I laughed. Later I shared it with folks.

Two takeaways here:

First: I had to wonder what I would have done if someone working for me had made that mistake. What would you have done?

Second: When you can laugh at yourself in front of your team, you become a more likeable as a leader. More importantly, it shows your team that it’s okay to make a mistake now and then. It’s human. It’s forgivable, and hopefully it’s fixable. Most mistakes are.


Further Reading

A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.

  • Pro 17:22