Core Leadership Values Every Leader Can Leverage To Become Successful
Leadership occurs within the context of core values. Leaders guide and facilitate others to make a positive difference in their own lives and to contribute to a larger good.
Why are values important in leadership? What are the core leadership values?
WarningGreat leaders come from all levels of society, and all cultures — but there are certain values great leaders share. These core values are the foundation of your leadership, the things that will help you become successful.
Inspiring a team to follow you and do their absolute best is not about the money or tight control. It’s about leadership.
Whether you are an aspiring leader or a leader that is looking to refresh your core values, I came up with a set of leadership values list that is based on my own experience and feedback from coaching my teams.
So what makes a great leader?
ImportantSuccessful leaders have winning personalities that lead by example. Companies that are led by true leaders are often the ones that stay competitive in the long run. This is because they have a culture of trust and respect that attracts top talent.
Leaders guide, support and inspire others to strive for amazing things.
A leader should be there for the tasks and work. In a leaders presence you should feel supported and trusted for the effort you make.
We have a choice each and every day to live in support of our values, or in spite of our values.
At the individual level, values are those little things we do each and every day that exemplify who we are. They aren’t trendy business hacks, they’re timeless guides that drive everything we do.
Here are five core values that will exponentially multiply your effectiveness as a leader. Study them. Practice them. Make them a lifestyle. Teach them to others. Then see the remarkable results.
Leading With Integrity
One of the ‘must-haves’ in my leadership dictionary. Whenever I talk about leadership values and ethics, integrity is the highlighted topic.
Integrity is by far the most challenging value of them all.
ImportantIf we discuss the importance of integrity in leadership, I always remember the saying ‘walk the talk’ and ‘practice what you preach’. As a leader, if you are in any shape or form trying to inspire others, you should live and breathe integrity.
Integrity is the consistency of your actions, your words, your values, and your moral principles. It’s at the center of every true success.
However the unpleasant the issue, leaders will not be afraid to raise it with their teams. By doing so leaders can challenge everyone to stand out from the crowd. This will require leaders to insist that everyone is to be open and honest with each other.
Integrity refers to one’s personal commitment to their moral principles. Without integrity, anyone is susceptible to acting outside of their moral code and making unethical decisions. When it comes to maintaining one’s reputation in business, ethics is everything. By acting with integrity, you set an important standard for all those around you.
There is no price you can pay for integrity, but a lack of integrity can be costly.
There is an immeasurable value that moral character brings to leadership. Great leaders prioritize the value of character over profit, and so they refuse to take advantage of opportunities for dishonest gain.
Business ethics must be practiced daily.
ImportantGreat leaders recognize that in the long run, acting with integrity ultimately results in greater opportunities for lasting success — and reduces the long-term risk of the organization as a whole.
Leading With Authenticity
Foundationally, high-powered teams foster an environment of trust. Through personal conversations, we develop authentic relationships past the daily work environment.
By sharing pieces of ourselves, we invite others to share and open up.
ImportantIt is in this vulnerability that we allow ourselves to grow, take risks, and innovate. A good leader offers an environment where teams foster an open dialogue and sharing of ideas.
Are you a sincere leader? Do you allow people to speak their minds and appreciate their input?
As an authentic leader, you are expected to do those things. Not because it is written in the corporate standards, but because it encourages team members to provide their thoughts and share feedback that is appreciated.
For example, if you are always honest in your dealings with others and always tell the truth, you externally are perceived as an ‘honest person’. If you tend towards the creative or collaborative in your style of work, then you are likely to find the highest satisfaction in roles that suit those give an outlet for those core values, and will often feel happiest amongst others who value those traits in the workplace. It’s as simple as that.
On an individual level, acting authentically immediately creates attraction.
It shows that the person is not ashamed of their self, that they are proud of who they are, and that they are not afraid to stand up for what they believe in. Personalities such as these are noticeable from a mile away, and they help create a culture of respect in the workplace.
Being 100% authentic is stripping away the labels people want to give you and living by who you are inside and sticking to that.
WarningAuthenticity is so important because once you show that you are being true to yourself, people will see this and respect it. Because who is a better you than you?
Leading With Commitment
Don’t just focus on the ‘now’, take responsibility for risks and opportunities that are just beginning to emerge in society, the environment and in the values of your employees and customer.
You cannot be a leader of others if you do not own your actions, mistakes, and current life responsibilities.
ImportantUnderstand what’s in your control, and fully own it within the organization. To perform better at work employees need a clear understanding of what the organization’s goals are and what’s expected of them in delivering those goals.
Aristotle called courage the first virtue, because it makes all of the other virtues possible.
WarningCourage is not the absence of fear but the acquired ability to move beyond the fear when times are tough and challenging, because at the end of the day courage is the commitment to begin without any guarantee of success.
Starting out or pushing for advancement requires dedication and commitment.
Successful leaders stay committed as it shows that they care for the people, project and the company. It also shows the willingness to get involved.
Daily, leaders around the world are going 100 miles per hour in no specific direction and getting nowhere. But great leaders work to establish a vision that goes far beyond what they can see — and full buy-in from their team. Vision from leadership and buy-in from teams produce an inspiring atmosphere where nearly any goal becomes possible.
Leaders must work with others to create a lasting leadership legacy, based on courage that will touch people’s hearts.
ImportantTo lead an organization takes courage: courage to try new things; courage to make mistakes; courage to admit you don’t know everything; and courage to change knowing that what works today may not work tomorrow.
Lack of commitment means inconsistency and uncertainty.
As a leader, when you show a lack of commitment to a vision or a set of goals, you won’t get commitment in return. Hell, you won’t even get compliance.
Leading With Confidence
Every leader needs to focus on exuding restrained confidence. Acting with an air of confidence makes everybody you work with trust your judgment.
Confident leaders are adept at making tough decisions, rallying the troops and inspiring others to achieve their potential.
WarningAlso, employees and stakeholders demand confidence from their leaders, especially during times of uncertainty. When there is an environment of trust and credibility, teams are more open and receptive to drive new ideas and take risks. As great leaders, we must trust our teams to make decisions.
Empowering others goes hand-in-hand with sharing confidence and building trust.
ImportantLeaders must provide the framework and give protection to pursue outcomes that are aligned to the broader strategy. This is a two-way street between teams and leadership. With greater trust, leaders are able to provide greater autonomy.
Confidence is treated as something we’re either born with or not, but it can be practiced and learned. Great leaders understand that you must believe in yourself to have the confidence to lead others.
Leadership is an achievement of trust.
The first job of a leader is to inspire trust and build it daily, and great leaders know that trust must be given if it’s going to be earned. Leadership is about making others better as a result of your presence, and making sure it lasts in your absence.
When you invest in your people you are investing in the future.
ImportantWhen you make the time to invest in others, they will return great value. We observe intangible qualities in a few leaders who intentionally create a team environment that empowers their staff to become better leaders themselves.
Leading With Humility
Humility promotes an environment where people can learn and develop. You do that by allowing them to take responsibilities that ordinary leaders might keep for themselves.
There is no greater value than a team that desires to carry out their responsibilities with passion.
Such a team originates with leadership that understands and expresses the individual and collective value of their teams.
Leaders that under-appreciate their employees end up with a dissatisfied team, a culture of negativity, and sub-par workmanship.
WarningMany leaders have difficulty distinguishing how they can affirm and respect their team while still maintaining their full authority over the team. However, an easy solution to this dilemma is expressing value through respect, humility, and simple encouragement.
A leader with respect will gain the respect from others around them. A leader does not stand on a pedestal and make orders, a leader respects his employees and leads by example in their vision.
Employees follow leaders who demonstrate the value of giving back.
They feel pride working for leaders who care about social good as well as the bottom line. So not visibly giving back won’t give you the backing you need from employees.
Leaders who show humility are those who have no problem deferring to the judgment of others.
ImportantHumility is the quality of being modest and humble. When leaders act with humility, they show that they do not overestimate their own importance or their own abilities. Instead, they have an appropriate and attractive degree of self-regard.
Leaders need to realize that their core values define their words, actions, decisions and methodologies and ultimately, the businesses they run or an organization’s actual values and culture.
Looking deeper into each of these values can uncover a plethora of resources needed for developing leaders.
ImportantYour business values must be in line with your core values if you are seeking to build a successful business and become a better leader to your employees.
There are many qualities of a great leader, and finding your voice is imperative.
The key to becoming a great leader is serving your team and everyone around you by putting them first. If you do, you’ll be paid back in full with loyalty, hard work and extraordinary results.
Are you ready to take the next step in your leadership journey?
WarningWhile it took me some time to come up with this list, I still am a firm believer in values-driven leadership since the beginning. It helps me keep my feet on the ground and see things clearly whenever I’m in doubt.
How about you? Do you believe that values make the leader? What are your most important values in leadership?
Keep an eye out for our articles on leadership and thank you for reading. Comments and feedback are always appreciated!