3 seconds

When you’re a leader, you’re always live and on stage. Every single word you say is going to be scrutinized. Every single action you take is going to measured and evaluated. Every single interaction you have with others is going to be replayed in the minds of the people you lead. There is no off-air for you.

It’s why it’s critical to temper your reactions. It’s easy to become frustrated at a lack of progress or angry at an avoidable mistake. Snide comments and angry words may make you feel better, but it has damaging consequences to the team that will last far longer than the lifespan of the outburst. Important words will fall on deaf ears as people become defensive. Communication will break down. A potential learning lesson becomes a wasted opportunity.

It’s human nature to express their emotions, but it’s your responsibility not to do it in a damaging way. Take 3 seconds to take a deep breath and be silent the next time something lights your fuse.