Why Values and a Purpose are Vital for Leaders Today


Matthew Snider is a writer, a personal development junkie and a regular blogger at Self Development Secrets, a blog to help you achieve your goals. For more tips like these, I encourage you to visit his site.

Have you worked under someone who was so assured and stood their ground that no matter what happened, he or she knew what mattered? Then you’ve probably worked with a leader who has strong, unshakeable values. It’s not about the money, recognition or power. These values that drive them are something bigger. Finding your purpose is one thing. Finding it as a leader is an entirely different subject. It’s not about emulating other successful leaders or key figures in the industry; it’s about identifying your real values in life, knowing that this gives you a definite purpose for making the tough decisions as a leader. Let’s go about finding out how these things can be so vital to being a better leader.


The Making Of A Better Leader

Making decisions is what leaders do. They get paid to make the tough calls. But what’s more important are the values of a leader. It gives the team consistency and stability. What I mean by that is this: having a set of values will give a team a direction, a company culture, and adds some meaning to the work that is being done. All these start from the top, the leader, and flows down to every level. Now every leader has their values, and they can differ from one to another. Two good leaders can have completely different values. So what exactly is a value and how does it help one become a better leader?



What Are Values?

Values are what is important to us—in other words, what we value, or the thing that drives us. People will have certain core values which help shape them into who they are today. The same values can also be different for everyone. For example, if two people value love, they can show it in very different ways through their actions or vocally. It’s sad to think that even though we all have values, when it comes to working, we tend to adopt the values we were taught to follow. Unfortunately, these values can hurt us, and it’s not something we would like to associate with our real values.


The Purpose Of A Leader

Harvard Business Review states that based on the author’s understanding, less than 20% of leaders have a strong sense of individual purpose. These same leaders can tell us the mission statement of the company, but they lack the sole purpose that makes them stand out as a leader. It doesn’t matter if you’re the CEO of a multi-million-dollar company or told to lead a small team of three, your purpose is what makes you, you. It’s your why: why you’re working, why you want to lead the team and more. That’s the difference between leaders, and a good leader has an ultimate purpose. This is why some leaders get remembered and acknowledged long after they’re gone.


How to Find Your Purpose?

You might have worked with someone who has a strong purpose—working with so much passion, so much enthusiasm. This is a different meaning from what we’re addressing. We are talking about your purpose as a leader. How do you find that? Before we delve any deeper, let me just say that in this part, I’ll try to be as neutral as possible. So if your intentions as a leader are to squeeze every last sweat out of your team or if it’s to put the people in your team first, that’s completely irrelevant here.

To truly find your purpose as a leader, you need to have set values. This is the direction you’re heading, and you stand by it. We’ve covered values at the start of this post because it’s one of the most important factors. It helps you become a better leader and in turn uncovers your true purpose as a leader.



Does My Team Trust Me?

This is a question that many leaders don’t want to know the answer to. But that’s because many leaders don’t have good values. So be honest with yourself and get the answer to this question. Trust me on this, if the team believes in the leader, they will be so much more organized, passionate, and the quality of work will be better.

There is so much more that leaders need to know, but we can all learn something from these questions. The questions above are especially useful to understand where your key focus is and to actually find your purpose as a leader.



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