Physicians take the Hippocratic oath.
Why? Because through their work, they have a huge impact on people’s lives and well-being and actually have a position where they could do physical harm to their patients.
What about leaders?
We don’t really fear that they physically will inject poison into our veins…
But in reality, leaders have a position of power where they too have a huge impact on people’s lives and well-being – and where, in reality, they can actually do psychological harm to their employees.
That is why I would like to take this opportunity to bring your attention to The Leadership Oath – a movement which envisions a day when business leaders will hold themselves to the higher standard of integrity and service to society that is the hallmark of a true professional.
I, personally, took this oath a number of years ago and strongly encourage every leader to take the oath – and to help others do the same.
May I bring your attention especially to “I will manage with loyalty and care, and will not advance my personal interests at the expense of my enterprise or society.”
I would have loved to see a small reformulation at the end of this statement – “…at the expense of my employees, colleagues, enterprise or society.”
But I can take it as it is! 🙂
The Leadership Oath
As a business leader I recognize my role in society.
My purpose is to lead people and manage resources to create value that no single individual can create alone.
My decisions affect the well-being of individuals inside and outside my enterprise, today and tomorrow.
Therefore, I promise that:
I will manage with loyalty and care, and will not advance my personal interests at the expense of my enterprise or society.
I will understand and uphold, in letter and spirit, the laws and contracts governing my conduct and that of my enterprise.
I will refrain from corruption, unfair competition, or business practices harmful to society.
I will respect the human rights and dignity of all people affected by my enterprise, and I will oppose discrimination and exploitation.
I will respect the right of future generations to advance their standard of living and enjoy a healthy planet.
I will report the performance and risks of my enterprise accurately and honestly.
I will invest in developing myself and others, helping the management profession continue to advance and create sustainable and inclusive prosperity.
In exercising my professional duties according to these principles, I recognize that my behavior must set an example of integrity, eliciting trust and esteem from those I serve. I will remain accountable to my peers and to society for my actions and for upholding these standards.
This oath I make freely, and upon my honor.
Pass it on!
I have no affiliation with The Oath Project – I just believe this is a piece in the puzzle of 21st century leadership.
Maybe even a significant piece…!
Please comment if you do take the oath – or have already taken it.