“But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;” -Matthew 5:44
Being a leader is one of the most difficult undertakings that a person can take. As a leader you must be responsible for the people that are following you. These people can be volunteers, employees, or even the person following you for a few hours or days. You are responsible for their well being as well as their actions which can be good, bad, or even downright disgusting. What you as a leader portray your followers will imitate.
What you feel and believe will be replicated, usually without any questions, by the individuals in your circle of influence. If you as a leader make it a habit to do good, your followers will do the same. If hate is more your style then that will show up in your organization. A good leader knows that when you instill a behavior into your people it will be done without question. The more people doing the behavior that you instilled will cause it to multiply exponentially.
We as leaders have the responsibility to do the most good that we possible can which will in turn cause your followers to do the same. We cannot allow hate to infiltrate our organizations. Once hate comes in it will spread like a virus. Why does hate spread so quickly? Because it is an easy emotion. It is a lot easier to hate something than it is to love something. Love requires you to actually find good in something, even when all that is visible is bad. Hate is different, because all the bad you see, which might not even be true, you dwell on turning into something that is bigger than it is.
How do you stop hate?
It is difficult to stop it once it has taken root in someone or in an organization. But the simple answer is to love them. Show compassion. By standing on your soap box and telling the hateful group that they are wrong is not the way to go about it. How do people respond when you tell them that they are wrong? The respond defensively because you are going after their core beliefs. If you have never had your core beliefs change, I can tell you from experience is a difficult long drawn out process. It does not happen quickly and it is very painful, even when you are changing for the better. Patience and persistence is key when trying to change someones view on the world. True leaders that care about people know this. They are willing to put in the effort to help facilitate the change in the individual. Over time you can stop the hate, but it is a constant battle that will not be won easily. Leaders must be willing to meet people where they are at to provide a solution to individuals present need in a nonjudgmental fashion. This is how you gain trust, which turns into influence, which allows you to lead the individual.
Love is Persistent
Give individuals what they need. If they need education give it to them. If they need food, medicine, drug treatments, housing, financial assistance give it to them. Figure out what their need is and fix that first. This is what love is. Love is not telling someone that they are wrong. Love is helping them get out of the pit that they have fallen into and setting them back on solid ground. Once they are on that solid ground then and only then can you start working on their beliefs. The more people that you pull out of the pit will help multiply your efforts by creating ambassadors for your cause.
Next time you are tempted to tell an individual that they are wrong, try to see where they are coming from, what they need and if you can fix it. Have there been situations that you have had to deal with hate in and organization? We would like to hear about it. Let us know in the comment section!