Leadership Development, Career Coaching and Executive Leadership Coaching Blog

Courageous Leadership Blog

Perfection - the enemy of leadership

Many of my clients in leadership positions express that they have a drive for perfection. When I ask them to give me examples of when they achieved perfection, the list is very short or non-existent. The result of course is the tension caused when you desire something that you can never achieve. This tension can lead to personal dissatisfaction, anxiety, and pushing yourself and others into unproductive work.  However, it is difficult to transition from driving for perfection to accepting less then perfect as "good enough".  Leaders typically put "good enough' in the category of unacceptable. Many leaders equate "good enough" with failure. My coaching experience demonstrates that behind "good enough" is a fear of failure. It is this fear that can prevent a leader from behaving as a leader. If a leader's respect and love for self cannot tolerate failure, then he or she cannot do the work leadership - take risks, confront difficult situations, be visible. Standing in the leadership circle doesn't require perfection, it requires courage. Perhaps courage is "good enough".

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