While visiting the Shrine of Saint Katherine Drexel with my four kids last week, I had the pleasure of meeting an old nun that lived with Saint Drexel for a few years back in the early 1950s.
She told me a story about the Saint being a stickler for the rules but very compassionate and caring with everyone. She would bring a piece of paper to measure the amount of space between the eyebrows and the veil.
The nun told me that Saint Katherine believed that if a rule was written down, it was important and needed to be followed. It was important for the leaders of the group to enforce them all and hold people accountable if they didn't follow them. Nuns are bound by a vow of obedience which makes rule following a little easier than today's corporate environment. This wasn't up for discussion in the convent.
If the rules were followed, there was an abundance of compassion and caring available but the message remained, follow the rules.
This discussion has been resonating with me all week and I continue to search for ways to use this in my management of others. As a High I, I am not a rule follower. It is something that I need to continue to grow more towards rather than my default operating system which doesn't serve me well in my career at time. I sometimes want to bend rules to help others and that probably isn't the most helpful path in many situations. Follow the rules, like everyone must do, and have caring for the problems this sometimes creates.