Everything moves so fast now that it’s easy to lose sight of the basics, to forget the principles and practices we know to be true. For that reason, I regularly take time to reflect on the fundamentals of leadership and success. This helps to ground me, get my head out of the clouds, and keep my ego in check (We all have egos…pretty large ones in fact.).
Here are a few thoughts that help guide me back to reality and toward making a meaningful contribution. They apply universally to any organization, department or team. Therefore, I suspect they will ring true with you as well. Use them in good health. Share them with your peers and your managers. Infuse them into your organization so they won’t be forgotten.
Most of the decisions in life motivated by greed have unhappy outcomes.
Focus on what you can give back to society, not what you can extract from it.
The best corporate growth comes from putting the doing of things for the client ahead of meeting earnings targets. Growth must be organic and synergistic rather than forced simply for growth’s sake.
Trust is everything because success depends upon customers’ trust in the products and services they buy from you and your employees’ trust in you as leader. If you do not have integrity, no one will trust you…nor should they. (There is a strong likelihood that fewer people trust you than you think.)
Your purpose is to create value for your customers, your employees, your stockholders, and for society, rather than extract it for yourself.
Institutions that survive and prosper must have values and a purpose beyond just making money. They will also require managers and leaders who infuse vision and character into every element of the organization, men and women who bring not only their heads but their hearts to the challenge.
“Authentic leaders genuinely desire to serve others through their leadership…are more interested in empowering people they lead to make a difference than they are in power, money, or prestige for themselves…are as guided by qualities of the heart, by passion and compassion, as they are by qualities of the mind…lead with purpose, meaning and values…build enduring relationships with people…are consistent and self-disciplined. When their principles are tested, they refuse to compromise.” – Bill George