There is a direct correlation between a leader’s level in an organization and his visibility. The further “up” you are, the more visible you become.
This may seem like a common sense statement, but some leaders do not either realize how far this visibility goes, or they forget.
When Adam Silver, the commissioner of the NBA, announced that Donald Sterling, the owner of the LA Clippers basketball team, was banned for life from the LA Clippers and essentially the NBA, this truth was extremely evident!
In a tape released by TMZ, Donald Sterling was recorded by an ex-girlfriend, expressing racist remarks and points of view. Here is the thing, these remarks were made in a private phone call! Just because he said these things in private doesn’t mean that they would not be exposed. A leader’s visibility is not determined by what he says or does in public, it is determined by what he says and does period!
Commissioner Silver understood this truth when deciding Sterling’s punishment. He knew America was watching, and he knew that what ever he decided, it would be seen, heard, and picked apart by all. While Silver’s words and actions were public and Sterling’s were in private, a leader can never underestimate the power of their visibility no matter where they are!
What are some other examples you’ve seen concerning a leader’s visibility?
It has happened to me several times lately. I have been out and about and seen people who knew me that I didn’t recognize. The size of my church combined with the fact that I haven’t been there long means that I may be seen by people that I don’t know. I say that to say that it increases the awareness that I have that others are watching even when we don’t realize it.
It’s a great reminder for us all. It seems unfair for a leader to always have to be “on,” when we’re only just human and are just as reliant on God’s grace as the next person. And, in times of failure we as leaders have to be humble and admit our mistakes, I think this is where Donald Sterling failed even more so.
Another lesson that Sterling teaches us is that ANYTHING WE SAY in today’s world may as well be extremely public. Integrity is that much more valuable because who you are in private will eventually be made public! This has always been true, but it is dramatically displayed in this situation…