Being a leader is no walk in the park and the reality is, every person leads at some level. However, if you want to lead effectively for the long-haul, you must be a secure leader. Over the years I have seen how insecure leaders create drama, devastation and pain in the lives of those they lead or follow.

I’ve always wondered when (organisational or personal) pressure sprung up, why do certain individuals REACT like bully juveniles at the playground? Until it struck me, the root issue why many leaders who lose their cool and react like babies throwing tantrums under pressure is because of ––insecurity!

As I developed over time my understanding of this leadership disability, I’ve come to understand my own omens of insecurities that needed confronting and an exorcism thereof, if I was going to take my teams and organisation to the next level.


Insecurity always shows up in every leader’s life. It can be disguised, but it can’t be hidden.


People who aren’t secure in who they are display some common characteristics. Insecurity is a normal emotion when we are exposed to change or deviation, but as we mature in leadership – we should be aware and guard against the extremely debilitating impact of insecurity.

As you read the typical characteristics of and insecure leader, ask yourself if the following are true for you?


The 10 Faces Of Insecurity


1. Insecure Leaders Are Controlling


They love to recruit or hire people in their teams they can control.

This is a gross injustice to the organisation because insecure leaders don’t recruit or attract people who are better than they are or most suited for a job. They attract people who are not as good as they are…people with less experience or who are younger, who can be controlled mentally or emotionally.

This is a gross injustice to the organisation because insecure leaders don’t recruit or attract people who are better than they are or most suited for a job. They attract people who are not as good as they are…people with less experience or who are younger, who can be controlled mentally or emotionally.



2. Insecure Leaders Are Never Wrong


Have you ever worked with Mr or Mrs Perfect?

They are never wrong! Mistakes happen to everybody else, except their clan. They will misconstrue other people’s motives to fit their stories. It’s easier to ask the devil to repent than to get them to admit they’re wrong.

Insecure leaders have to be right. It is too a high price to pay to be otherwise. So they misinterpret what people do and why they do it, to make themselves emerge as the hero.

When secure leaders stand up to insecure people, they are written off and labelled as arrogant, jealous and controlling. Motives get misrepresented so they can be right each time. When you have a leader who can admit their mistakes without having to do a mental autopsy of the situation, you have gold!


3. Insecure Leaders Are Slave Masters


Insecure leaders are not collaborators or team players.

The only time they will run with your idea is when they have an ulterior motive. Insecure leaders don’t look for the best ideas because they are interested only in what they want! Being a slave master is the only approach to achieve this.

They known to abandon integrous relationships.  They are bum lickers to all who are disloyal followers.

Rather than honest, loyal friends and teammates.


4. Insecure Leaders Are Defensive


Insecure leaders flare their insecurity when ideas or decisions they make are challenged or not accepted.

They are protective of their titles and performance. They paranoidly look over their shoulder, continually expecting someone to question them or their authority.

5. Insecure Leaders Interpret Disagreement as Disloyalty


Insecure people don’t see people as people; they see them only as either on ‘my side’ or ‘against me’. They think the sun and the universe rotates around them.

They think the universe rotate around them.


5. Insecure Leaders Misemploy Conflict


Insecure leaders either avoid conflict through passivity or aggressivity.

They look at every situation as a potential conflict. They are either too soft or uncaring.

Secure leaders handle conflict with truth and grace working together because relationships matter more than being right.


6. Insecure Leaders Are Controlling


Insecure leaders use information to keep the spotlight on them.

They assume all key assignments which would give attention to them. They unashamedly employ the words like ‘I’ and ‘My’ more than ‘We’ or ‘Our’.


7. Insecure leaders Never Invest In Others


Insecure leaders limit opportunities for others to advance.

They keep people under their control; to protect their position. They are cautious of stronger leaders. They have ‘yes-man’ around them and guard against anyone who displays leadership potential. They hand out titles only to those they believe will never question their intention.


8. Insecure leaders Refuse to Handle Difficult Situations


Insecure leaders love the political card.

They fear not being liked, so they often ignore the most awkward situations. They talk behind people’s backs rather than to them. They are likely to say one thing to one person and something else to another – depending on what is popular, easy and non-confronting at the time.


9. Insecure leaders Are Jokers


Insecure leaders often use jokes as a coping mechanism to divert attention from the issues they don’t want to face.

Again, they don’t want to handle the hard stuff – and want to be liked – so when they make people laugh; it gives a false sense of security.


10. Insecure leaders Love Mirrors


Insecure leaders always carry mirrors, mirrors on them, mirrors near them.

They are overly concerned about personal appearance. While this is not always the case, but it is most of the time true. They are too conscious of their clothing, hair and appearance. They are afraid of not being in style, wanting to be accepted. They are constantly looking for the latest fashion or gadgets. (The opposite could also be true. The insecure leader is careful not to stand out, so they appear to have no concern for personal appearance at all.)


Question: Which of these points are true concerning you? How will you change any of these insecure traits to become a more stable leader?