Growing evidence indicates that, globally, human beings are connected through common sets of values that include freedom, love, tolerance, fairness, truth and responsibility. The consequence is an intricate relationship between vibrant leadership and human values which exerts a deep impact upon community decision-making and sustainability.
Freedom, Love, Fairness, Truth and Tolerance
Freedom encourages personal liberty and rights of others to act from their own will. Love is expressed as compassion, awareness and empathy for others. Fairness involves good judgment with equitable, just treatment of others. Truth tells what exists within the given context. Tolerance values unique and diverse contributions of individuals and organizations.
An ideal leader knows that un-manifested potential abounds in the human psyche. Good leaders create emergent conditions which allow individuals to grow their own leadership and be the leaders they are meant to be. Emergent conditions are affected by what the formal leader permits and encourages.
A formal title does not make a person a leader. Leadership is about fostering relationships, mobilizing awareness and stimulating conversations. Leaders stay aware and make plans to reduce pain and suffering as they help others to be all they can be. They develop a following because of how they live their life. Leadership attributes are:
- Integrity: consistent words and actions.
- Awareness: understands own and others’ perspectives of self and impact on others.
- Receptivity: listens to, understands and is receptive to others.
- Belief: possesses an inner trust/belief/faith.
- Humility: holds a modest opinion of self.
- Intuition: connects hunches/feelings/awareness to real context.
- Interdependence: respects, lives and works in the interconnectedness of relationship and systems.
- Equilibrium: balances competing demands.
- Followership: models “leaderful” behavior, creating an environment where others can lead.
- Curiosity: demonstrates desire for discovery; asks meaningful questions to gain understanding.
- Resourcefulness: is creative and proactive with available resources..
- Adaptability: is flexible in meeting challenges and opportunities.
- Quality Conscious: consistently pursues excellence.
Leaders manage businesses, organizations or governments. This job depends upon these skills:
- Result driven: identifies and pursues important goals.
- Directing others: engages others, assigning clear, meaningful tasks.
- Monitoring: regularly monitors outcomes against ongoing goals.
- Planning: reflects on past, present and future, or potential scenarios, to achieve predetermined goals.
- Decision Making: understands and applies facts, perspectives, objectives and criteria to making decisions.
- Relationships: identifies, builds and manages mutually valuable and trusting relationships. Supporting: permits, encourages and provides organizational conditions for people to achieve the mission.
- Stewardship: ethically and legally manages corporate or government resources as though they were his/her own.
Pressures facing top level leaders require highly developed life skills enabling them to maintain a “centered’ self. These skills are:
- Communication: communicates effectively with good oral, written, non-verbal and listening skills.
- Stress Management: effectively manages pressures of life and work.
- Time Management: manages time effectively by prioritizing, planning, delegating and following through.
- Handles Change: anticipates, accepts and leads change.
- Problem Solving: demonstrates good judgment, effectively solving problems.
- Creativity/Innovation: pursues and supports creativity and innovation
- Self development: committed to continuous multi-faceted learning.
Many of these areas can be learned! The acumen to survive in politicized facets of the position is acquired over time. By building a strong team of skilled individuals, new leaders become successful without having all knowledge required in the job. The critical factor is fit. Who has the right vision? Who holds high and lives the best values? Who has the best formula for leading the way forward?