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Good Leaders Do not use Foul Language


As a leader (coach/teacher), I strive to enforce a basic rule:

Use your influence in a positive way.

I believe that the words you say carry much weight. Long are the days when filth from someone's mouth was just "accepted" or giving an excuse to someone for "that is just who they are."

Leaders are given a precious and honorable position to lead with their words and actions. This includes their speech. 

Recently, a story came out of Whitehall New York describing how one school board of the school district agreed that swearing in Leadership should be regulated. Former Whitehall (New York) varsity football coach Justin Culligan was fired for allegedly using foul language after school officials warned coaches before the start of the season that there was a zero-tolerance policy on swearing, according to emails from school officials.

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 What you say flows from what is in your Heart

Leadership is of the heart. Your authenticity and integrity come from your heart. The heart is the causal core of your personhood. So what comes out of your mouth is what is on your heart already.

Personally, I cannot work with someone that cannot control themselves and the words they use. If they can't watch the words they use, what else can they not control?

Your authority and influence comes from who you are. This includes the words you use.

Whatever you believe about swearing, you have to agree that there is a social and cultural stigma when it comes to using profanity. This is why whenever a high school athlete swears, I say, "Please watch your mouth." And they say..."sorry." If you like it or not, we live with a standard that cursing is not appropriate. Swearing is cheap. It is easy. And in your leadership, it will serve no purpose other than to weaken your leadership. People don't respect or follow leaders that can not find informed or intelligent words to say.

Words have the power to leave scars.

Your words speak volume in your influence and leadership. Leaders who focus on the future and calculate their responses to reflect the long-term success of their leadership have much influence.

Did I make my case? Did I take it too far? I would love to hear your thoughts on this rant.