Without wax

I was moved by this story I read and want to share it with you. It’s from the book, “The Leader’s Voice: How Your Communication Can Inspire Action and Get Results!By Boyd Clark and Ron Crossland, 2002.
“In ancient Rome, statuary was the ultimate status symbol, representing wealth, importance, and even immortality. Sculptors, revered and rewarded, became skilled with stone and wax. Yes, we said wax. Scars from a misguided chisel or natural flaws in the stone were skillfully filled with colored wax. The wax disguised such imperfections until the sun, wind, or time revealed the flaw.

The most sought-after artisans refused this practice and proudly displayed a Sine Cera sign on their shop doors. The Latin term sine cera means ‘without wax.’ The sculptors who worked sine cera guaranteed the real thing. In today’s terms, they were sincere.

Sine cera leaders are unpretentious. Wax free, they do not pretend to be someone they are not or to feel something they do not. They are honest and real. They know who they are and aren’t afraid to show it. Unfortunately, too many leaders attempt to cover their flaws, their true feelings, or the truth with a form of wax.”
I’ve dealt with – and heard stories about – leaders who act in ways, on the surface, that are admired. They want everyone to think highly of them. But, when things don’t go their way, their surface is scratched, or problems arise, who they truly are surfaces. Their wax melts.

None of us is perfect. No one expects perfection from us. But, they do expect consistency between words and actions. Authenticity.

We all make mistakes, but true leaders acknowledge their flaws.

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