As promised, here is the second half of Napoleon Hill’s list of the 10 major reasons why potential leaders fail.
5 More Major Reasons Leaders Fail
6. Selfishness. The leader who takes all the credit for the work of his or her followers is sure to be met by resentment. The really great leader claims none of the credit. Great leaders are content to see the honors, when there are any, go to his or her followers, because he or she knows that most people will work harder for praise and recognition than they will for money alone.
7. Intemperance. Followers do not respect a leader who lacks self-control. Moreover, intemperance in any of its various forms destroys the endurance and the vitality of all who indulge in it.
8. Disloyalty. Perhaps this should have come at the head of the list. The leader who is not loyal to his or her employer, and to his or her associates, both those above and below, cannot maintain leadership for long. Disloyalty marks a person as being low, and brings down on a person’s head the contempt he or she deserves. Lack of loyalty is a major cause of failure in every walk of life. The modern workplace is not the shining example of enduring loyalty it used to be, but nevertheless, disloyalty is not a trait that will be tolerated by employers or respected by peers or those under a leader.
9. Emphasizing the “authority” of leadership. The efficient leader leads by encouragement and example, not by trying to instill fear in the hearts of followers. The leader who tries to impress followers with his or her “authority” falls within the category of leadership through force. Real leaders have no need to advertise their authority except by his conduct—their sympathy, understanding, fairness, and demonstrating that they know their job.
10. Emphasizing the title. Competent leaders do not require a “title” to give them the respect of their followers. People who make too much of their titles generally have little else to emphasize. The doors of real leaders are open to everyone; their working quarters are free from formality or ostentation.
These are among the more common causes of failure in leadership [the complete list of 10]. Any one of these faults is enough spell failure. Study the list carefully if you aspire to leadership, and make sure that you are free of these faults.
Napoleon Hill knew we all have the potential to be leaders, but we do not all put the effort into making that a reality. This list of 10 major mistakes can help you enhance your potential, and teach you more of how a true leader operates.
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