“Be it to teach it” seems to apply to every aspect of my life — teaching, coaching, training, parenting, and even just “adulting” too. I find myself saying it often in workshops regarding classroom management and boosting children’s social competence — you have to be kind and be patient if you want to teach kindness and patience, right?
I had an a-ha moment recently, while working with some managers on leadership development. I was singing the praises of authentic leadership and realized that the participants weren’t familiar with the model, so I gave a brief explanation of the 4 components and then said “the best way I can sum it up is that you have to be it to teach it” — and I could see the message comfortably settle in at that point.
After all, doesn’t it make sense that if you want to teach people to be fair, ethical, transparent, and self-aware, you have to have those same qualities and value those same traits? (And the next time I’m tempted to advise a client to stop sweating the small stuff or to tell my teenager that she should go to sleep earlier — I’ll remind myself first that I have to be it to teach it.)
This post first appeared at https://www.linkedin.com/in/christinafecio/ in August 2017.