Why Do Some Leaders Fail?

By Mark Bowser

Why do leaders fail? This is a tricky question. One with multiple depths of answers. However, I believe there are two shining pillars that are always missing from leaders who fail. Sometimes, these failing leaders are missing both of these pillars and at other times they are missing just one of them. But, if either is missing, failure is inevitable.

What are these missing pillars? They are Character and Vision. Let’s take a few minutes to explore these pillars a bit deeper.  Hitler was a man of great vision. A man who succeeded a great deal. But, Hitler was a lousy leader. Why? Because of a lack of moral character. Yes, he thought he had character. Yes, many others around him thought he had character too. But, to the masses of the world and to history, he lacked the basic moral character of honesty, uprightness, and love for fellow human beings. Because of this, he eventually failed and caused misery to millions of people.  We could get into the theological reasons for this failure, but that is one for another discussion. All leaders who lack character at their core will fail. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but someday. To know this is true, all we have to do is look back at the last fifty years of contemporary history and look at all the people who have fallen from the heights of success to the depths of despair. Just to mention a few, we have evangelist Jim Baker, politician Gary Hart, and companies such as Enron. Unfortunately, the list could go on and on and on.

The second pillar that is missing from leaders who fail is vision. Vision is vital. Vision is critical. King Solomon in the book of Proverbs said, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” And perish indeed they will. Where there is no vision or direction, people wander around in chaos with no purpose. The human experience needs direction and purpose. We not only need purpose, we crave it. Vision provides not only the direction but the purpose of the destination before the journey ever begins.

Successful leaders continually develop these two pillars. They are mindful of their character and where they are going. Would there be an America without a Washington? Would there be two countries if not for Lincoln? Would England have survived World War Two without Churchill, and would there be a Walt Disney World without a Walt? Will your organization thrive without you? A “you” who is focused on incredible character and a vision worthy of the moon. Some thoughts for us all to ponder.  Thanks for reading today. God bless!

*Mark Bowser is a leadership and sales expert and for the last 27 years has traveled throughout the United States, Canada, and even Australia presenting business seminars. He is the author of several books including “Nehemiah on Leadership,” “Sales Success” with Zig Ziglar, “Some Gave It All” with Danny Lane (endorsed by Chuck Norris), and “The 3 Pillars of Success.” Mark Bowser can be reached at his website www.MarkBowser.com or email mark@MarkBowser.com. Schedule Mark for your next conference or training event. Online Seminars available too.

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