As a leader, you’ve likely been to countless workshops, read numerous books, and accepted sage advice from mentors. Some of it fabulous, some not.

The worst communication advice that I hear and read over and over again is that leaders, for the sake of transparency and to build trust, need to be 100% honest. Yikes!!!

While on it’s face, this advice is aimed at helping leaders keep employees informed, stopping the rumor mill, and resisting the urge to keep vital information “secret” or on a “need to know basis,” it can often be interpreted as license to say whatever leaders are thinking or feeling in the moment. And that is a poor choice.

Great leaders know that candid communication matters. They also know that having a “filter” matters. There are times and circumstances when it is wise to refrain from saying anything or to edit your initial thoughts and communicate them in a more tactful fashion. Great leaders “think before they speak” and make sure what they say, and how they say it, is in alignment with the kind of leader they want to be.

woman hand over mouthQuick tip: Be “honest” and engage your filter for great leadership communication!