Leaders are always teaching. It can be conscious or unconscious, but your organization is learning from you. You’re giving people both positive and negative examples. They might not articulate it, but they are learning.
You are setting the pace, by your example.
You are clarifying what’s important, by your example.
You are explaining how decision-rights and authority work, by your example.
You are defining what is celebrated and rewarded, and not, by your example.
You are demonstrating communication and collaboration, by your example.
You are showcasing risk-tolerance and creative solutioning, by your example.
The people in your organization who can articulate these things are the ones who are consciously paying attention and thinking about your example – but everyone is learning from you to some degree.
It’s easiest to lead people who see your example as a positive example. Even people with different preferences will discipline themselves to follow you. However, when people see your behavior as a negative example, at best you’ll be able to push them, cajole them, threaten them, or exploit your positional authority.