At first, this may not sound like an effective way to look at leadership. To understand the context of the message, we need to understand where leadership begins. Leadership begins at our core, our beliefs, those established set of values that we hold close and is impossible to separate from our leadership behaviors. It is important to do the right things, behave in the right ways, and inspire others, however all of these are outcomes of who we are at our core. We act on our belief of honesty and integrity and hold true to our values, especially when facing intensity of the circumstances in which we work. Who we are matters. How we translate that into our leadership skills matters.
Consider highly successful leaders in all walks of life that falter when they could have stayed the course with successful results. Decisions made to cut corners, create advantages through dishonest means, or simply tear down others to look more successful. These are all examples of what we have experienced over many years as we live in an environment lacking true leadership in our lives.
Consider the highly successful leader that stays true to his/her integrity regardless of the situation. The individual that inspires others through the creation of a company culture that values others in pursuit of success. This individual serves others first and demonstrates the highest level of integrity in their interactions and business dealings. This leadership matters. This leadership can change the world.
Who you are as a leader in your life matters. Hold true to your values, beliefs and integrity no matter what you face. Understand the need to be a visionary for others, inspire in the midst of frustration and be a light for others when all seems lost. Leaders are made in the most difficult circumstances, not when everything is going well. True integrity is found in individuals that understand who they are and why they do what they do. Know who you are at your core, the beliefs and values you hold close and your actions, in other words “what you do” will follow. Who you are drives how effective you are as a leader.