10 Results Of The Leader’s Greatest Sin

The Bible tells us that the wages of sin is death. For leaders, a sin exists that can literally kill our influence. That sin is…pride.

I’m not talking about a healthy self-image. Leaders must possess that to make hard decisions, believe in their vision, motivate people, and take new ground. No, I’m talking about arrogance, egotism, high-mindedness, conceit, smugness, and an attitude of superiority.

Unhealthy pride causes a leader to do the following:

  1. Refuse to admit mistakes.
  2. Make decisions that are self-serving and not the best for those they are called to serve.
  3. Irresponsibility gamble on their abilities, and lose.
  4. Lack self-control.
  5. Think they do not need people.
  6. Have constant turnover.
  7. Publicly humiliate people.
  8. Lack authenticity.
  9. Have a team who has no loyalty.
  10. Fail.  It is not a question of if, but when.

If you are a leader with an unhealthy sense of pride, it is not too late to change.  Start by apologizing to those you have offended. 

There is something very interesting about an apology.  When you admit that you messed up, do you actually think you are telling people something they don’t already know?  Of course they already know you messed up! 

By not admitting your mistakes, you lose credibility and influence. The inverse is true as well.  You gain much influence and credibility by losing just a little bit of pride.  It’s a great trade, but are you too prideful to make it?

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About Brian Dodd on Leadership

I am a church stewardship and leadership consultant for INJOY Stewardship Solutions. This blog combines my personal passions of church, sports, pop culture and family into a single leadership resource. I trust your time on this site will create conversations and add value to your life.

5 Responses to “10 Results Of The Leader’s Greatest Sin”

  1. Great post. I’m talking about character in my blog over the next few days and this hits right in the middle of my writing. Great work and good conviction. Keep ’em coming to keep us thinking.

  2. Brian,

    I’ll put aside the fact that I really don’t like you when you your posts hit so close to home, and share my top quote of all time on pride by Judson Edwards:

    I am personally convinced that submission, dying to self, crucifying of pride, is crucial to feeling joy. We think of denying our self as somber, grim-faced business, when it is in truth a prelude to happiness. If you want power, learn to be assertive. If you want joy, learn to be submissive. We find joy in the absence of serving self because we experience love in serving others. Only when we die to self can we fully love another.

    Self is a devilish creature, demanding all of our energy, wanting our constant attention, reaching even into our pocketbooks for favors. How can we ever hope to be attuned to another’s spirit when self is making so much noise? How can we ever hope to love another when self screams for our constant care? When self is alive and well, it offers us an all-or-nothing proposition. We either pacify self, or we crucify it.

    Okay, I was just kidding about not liking you earlier.


  3. Thanks for the post Brian, this reminded of this quote:
    “A man can fail many times, but he isn’t a failure until he begins to blame somebody else.” ~John Burroughs
    By admitting you made a mistake, instead of losing respect or credibility you gain trust especially from those you lead. We all make mistakes (if we are doing things right! ).


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