The lesson in all of this for accountable leaders is a simple one: Start with the truth. If you have a problem, say what it is and say what you are doing to fix it. Do not lie about having already solved it. Do not pretend the problem does not exist and never has existed. That will only deepen cynicism on the part of your workforce…and spread the corporate culture of deception throughout your organization. The only way to turn this cycle around is for top leadership to tell the truth about what is going on, even when (especially when!) the truth hurts.
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