If you’re a good leader, do you make the people around you more likely to become good leaders as well? Zenger Folkman (click here to read the article published in the Harvard Business Review) conducted a study where they examined 360-degree assessments of high-level managers and of their direct reports who were mid-level managers. The purpose of this study was to determine whether “social contagion” affects leaders and to see which behaviours are most readily “caught”. As predicted, significant correlations were found on a variety of behaviours. Good high-level leaders inspire better leadership behaviours among their mid-level managers, while bad high-level leaders do the contrary.
Additional studies further down in the organisation demonstrated that this is not just limited to those working directly for you, but it can also affect the engagement of the people working for them. Furthermore, your behaviours, whether good or bad, are likely to be mimicked by others in your life – whether it be your peers, your partner, or your children. This demonstrates what a significant impact leaders can have on those around them and hopefully will motivate you to try changing your poor leadership ways.