Here's a Quick Way to Define Your Leadership Core Values

 

Have you ever stopped to reflect on the impact that you have as a leader in your life, regardless of what you do in your work? If you are a parent, you are a leader. If you organize a get-together with friends, you are a leader. If you step in to diffuse a heated conversation, you are a leader. Core leadership values are even being integrated into masters in public administration and MBA programs to help students become effective leaders. 

 

Leadership Core Values

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It is not a sign on the door or letters after your name that makes you a leader. It is how you step into a leadership role.  It is imperative that you know who you are and what you stand for. These are the goals by which you want to both lead and live.


Four Reasons why Identifying Your Core Values is so Important

First, when you don't have a clear vision of your values, you might inadvertently make decisions that contradict those values, causing confusion and discomfort for yourself and your team. You could also find yourself headed down a path that isn't right for you and that takes you even further from your core values. Write your core values down.  Sometimes you are asked to make decisions quickly and under pressure.  Don't count on your memory in that stressful situation.  Pull out your core value list and make the decision that aligns with who you are and what you believe.

Second, part of your role as a leader is to hold on to the bigger picture of what's important to your work individually and in the group as a whole. When your vision is grounded in core values, and your leadership role is positioned from the right perspective, you will naturally attract the people, resources and opportunities that are aligned with your vision and values.

Third, when you lead from the core, rather than from the surface, your decisions will be based on future growth and possibility rather than being restricted to what you have experienced on the surface level. Your thoughts will be influenced by your sub-conscious, derived from your beliefs and your openness to possibility.

Last, but certainly not least, when you are clear about your values and operating from that place of clarity, you will be better able to communicate what's important and empower your team.  This clear communication sets the stage for distinguishing urgent versus important and provides a framework for your employees to measure every decision, without a doubt.


Exercise

Included here is an exercise to assist in defining your Core Values.  It is intended to help you reach down to your core and begin to identify who you are and what is important to you.

 

Question:  What Core Values drive you?

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