I am currently reading Atomic Habits by James Clear.
Clear explains that the best way to start a new habit is to associate the desired behavior with a specific time and place (it’s called implementation intention). Essentially, telling yourself that you will do 10 push-ups a day is not as effective as deciding that you will do 10 push-ups in your bedroom, before dinner, right after changing out of your work clothes.
There is a lesson here for all of us aspiring ethical leaders. Instead of telling ourselves that we will speak more often to our teams about the importance of doing the right thing (a good habit), we should instead decide to share, during the first staff meeting of each month, a recent ethical decision that we’ve made (much more specific). Or, instead of simply committing to improving our team’s culture in 2021, we could commit to reading one chapter of Connect First each Friday afternoon before leaving work (the book has 52 short chapters).
We all want to be better ethical leaders. We know that we are what we repeatedly do. So why not create habits of ethical leadership?
What habits will you create in 2021?