In this Learning from Exodus post, we look at a negative aspect of leadership.  During the plagues in Egypt, the Pharaoh continually decides that he will let the people of Israel go… until the plague is no longer a problem.

32 But Pharaoh again became stubborn and refused to let the people go” (Exodus 8:32).

Throughout this whole process, the Pharaoh, the ruler of Egypt, suffers the plagues to the point that he doesn’t want anything more to do with the Israelites and so he tells Moses that he will let the people go if the plague would just come to an end.  However, when the plague is over, he refuses to keep his word.

Keeping your word is a dying art in today’s society.  Sometimes, there are genuine reasons why things seem to conspire against us, and we have to back out, but more often than not, people over-promise and under-deliver, and that’s where we find the real problem.

Being true to what you say is critical as a leader.  If you waffle back and forth, if you fail to make a decision and stick with it, then you are going to have some problems.  When you do that over and over again, you teach people that what you say isn’t really your final decision and they should have no reason to listen to you in the first place.

However, when we do what we say we are going to do, people come to know us as trustworthy.  People see that we mean what we say and say what we mean.  Again, this doesn’t mean that every once in a blue moon something won’t come up that causes you to make a change, but do this sparingly.

Leaders, keep your word.  Don’t waffle, and people will come to know you as a person of your word.