Credibility [Book]

Why is credibility so important, and how can you be a credible leader?

In a time where the quality of our political leadership has been challenged by the eurozone crisis, the question of “Who can we trust now?” remains relevant globally and locally alike.

In this revised edition of Credibility: How leaders gain and lose it; why people demand it, authors James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner sets credibility as a cornerstone of leadership and answers why “Do What you Say you Will Do” is essential for leaders to maintain credibility. With case studies collected over 30 years, at the heart of the book, they state six key disciplines that are instrumental to becoming a credible leader:

  1. Discover yourself
  2. Appreciate Constituents
  3. Affirm Shared Values
  4. Develop Capacity
  5. Serve a Purpose
  6. Sustain Hope

These techniques are immediately relevant to me and to the young leaders I inspire through Halogen’s programmes. Credibility cannot survive on lip service alone. Only teachings that have been integrated into the core of the teacher’s character will hold meaning to the student.

In the words of Kouzes and Posner, “Credibility earns commitment; dictation earns compliance and compliance produces adequacy – not greatness.” Indeed, all the great advice I have been inspired by have all originated from great people who had lived credibly. It is hardly a coincidence, and it sets me thinking about what can i do to make credibility a habit.

“Credibility earns commitment; dictation earns compliance and compliance produces adequacy – not greatness.” –Kouzes and Posner, authors

Credibility is a straightforward book that is real, both in concept and application. it delivered a revelatory reality check for me, and I am confident it will for you too. From the words of the authors, “Success in initiating or responding to change is inextricably linked to the credibility of those leading the efforts.”

As we enter our classrooms, board rooms, offices and homes, perhaps we can consider how we want to start the new year well with credibility.

Article by Shawn Khoong

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