I don’t have to look far in my world to find examples of such failed, yet ignorant leadership. My Masters degree is in Communications with a concentration in leadership. We studied failed leadership practices quite a bit as I earned that degree - because there is a lot to be learned from studying how NOT to do things. Very often, one of the root causes of such travesty is the inability of the leader to own up to his or her mistakes and/or bad decisions. The leaders in Israel became so deeply entrenched in their roles as “spiritual” leaders, it was impossible for them to step aside from themselves and take an honest look at what they were doing and what was happening to the people they were leading. And everyone around them became so wrapped up in participating in the sins of the nation they could no longer advise the spiritual leaders wisely. Gulp. I don’t want to become such a leader.
I think who we choose for friends contributes greatly to our leadership abilities. As much as I love to be with the friends and acquaintances of mine who I know are going to tell me everything I am doing is just great - essentially the “yes” men in my life - it is a dangerous trap for me to surround myself with them. I need people like my friend Kim who always tells me like it is - she has made me aware many times of the flaws in my logic and thoughts and helps me think things through before I act. And she lets me mess up (I know I am terrible about returning calls sometimes) yet forgives me and welcomes me back when I realize I have been inconsiderate. I wouldn’t have made it this far without her insight and help.
Rose is another dear one who has endured with me. she is the one friend I have had longer than any other. She is always an angel when I make mistakes and have to grovel out an apology to her. She is yet another straight-shooter who has given me more than one wake-up call when I have headed down the wrong path. I don’t see her as often as I would like and I realize how much I need her strength and endurance and honesty in my life.