At 2 PM today I did the unthinkable.

I had promised my daughter I would go to school at 12:45 PM and be her “show and tell.” She had proudly practiced how she would share in Spanish, “yo tengo un Mama.” And that she would say I had a shirt in “azul” and a blazer that was “negro.”

Oops. As the horrible lump settled in my stomach I knew I had to run to her school and somehow make it up.

Of course she forgave me. The kids told me that she had told the class “I have to wait for my Mom” as she passed on show and tell.

Now as a parent I knew I was wrong on so many levels. I feel awful as I realize she had told friends I was coming and then had to sit waiting while I forgot to show.

What lesson do you think she learned about promises, keeping your word, and respect that day?

So how does this relate to you as a leader? I see countless examples where leaders forget meetings, run over time, don’t get back with answers they promised to have and yet…they don’t twinge that this happened!

Why is it that we feel morally responsible to our children but not to our employees? Where are our principles as leaders? And how can we expect our employees to give exemplary service when we don’t give THEM exemplary service.

I believe the Universe sends back to you what you send out. So if you find that employees don’t turn projects in on time, don’t follow up on meetings, don’t treat the customer like gold, then look in mirror and make the changes that show you stand on your principles.

And remember …a principle with exceptions is not a principle.