We live in wild, wide-open times. People feel confident and entitled to say whatever they want, whenever they want, about whoever they want. Freedom of speech is wonderful, isn't it? Don't we value candor and honesty?
Of course. And, we also value respect, decency, dignity, and truthfulness. When as leaders we are insulted should it be cause for alarm?
We don't need to take insults personally, but we do need to take them seriously.
How we respond will set the tone. The ways that we react will set an example for everyone on our team (and many people off of our team) for leadership behavior. Can we remain professional, respectful, truthful? Can we manage our emotions?
If the insult is true, that is valuable feedback. If the insult is false, there's no reason to get upset. High performance leaders remain leaders even when that leadership is disparaged.
-- doug smith