The positive leader sees the good in humanity. He maintains a perspective that people are extraordinary. He views people as wonderfully generous and creative. He expects the best out of others. He knows that people will rise to a challenge when situations demand it.
The positive leader marvels at human qualities. For instance, he’s thankful that there are people in the world willing to rush into a burning building and climb 90 stories with a load of equipment on their backs…just to save some one they don’t even know.
The positive leader views people as virtuous at their core. They crave honesty, justice, and loyalty. He’s also thankful that there are virtuous people who would rather die than sacrifice their honor by betraying their just principles.
The positive leader chooses to set the example by being the best that he can be. He’s committed to being a respectable person not just in words, but also through his deeds. The positive leader treats people with dignity and leads by tapping into all the best qualities that human beings have to offer.
I know it’s not a Pollyanna world out there, and leaders are not personality alchemists. They can’t turn hearts of lead into hearts of gold. However, I am an optimist, and I refuse to give in to the cynical view that human nature is irretrievably dark and negative. Yes we stumble. Yes we fail. Sometimes we fail really big. But I still believe in the positive nature of people.
I subscribe to the idea that leaders can inspire others to reach higher and look beyond themselves. That is what great leaders do.