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Amp; 7. Map your purpose and your values to those of your organization

Having now articulated your own sense of purpose and your values, you will be able to bring those more visibly to your leadership. There will always be overlap between your organization’s values and your own. Find those spaces of overlap, and speak to them as often as you can. Your values will now work to the benefit of the organization you lead because they will be shared values. When you now speak to these values, your passion and belief will show through and you will be inspiring.

Be prepared to wear your heart on your sleeve. Lead from the heart by having the courage to speak more often to your values. That conviction will give you real strength of character, and this is the source of real influence. Being aligned with your core values and beliefs through what you say and do will win respect, trust and a willingness to listen.

Show humanity

Leadership is how you make people feel. Remember this: people won’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.

Spend time getting to know others. Believe the saying that the most charming people in life are those who are more interested in you than you are in them. Be charming. Be curious about others and understand their own histories and beliefs, their motivations and interests. Take an interest in their families. Ask them to tell you the story of how they came to be who they are today. Really listen.

Get into the middle of conversations, invite challenge and encourage others to come up with better ideas. Never close your ears to criticism or attack your critics. Never make excuses or refuse to change your mind. (Conversely don’t always change your mind too quickly.) Never get sucked into office politics or pass the buck.

Be visible

Make sure that you are visible to your people. If you lead a small team you probably have little choice. If you lead a national or global team, it gets a little more challenging. You may have to travel a lot. When you do, make sure you walk about your offices and stop to talk to people. Don’t make the mistake of attending only the management meeting you travelled there for.

If you can’t get out to the offices as much as you would like, then use videoconferencing, webinars or YouTube and any other way you can show your face. Be approachable. In countless interviews I have done among employees, the one thing they always talk about is whether leaders are visible or invisible. Guess which type garners the most praise from them?

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