Using Value-Based Leadership to Build Business Acumen
Everyone who works in an organization can recognize people’s behaviors that are driven by their value system. You know who you gravitate to and why. Values help to form common bonds and foster collaborative action. In this article, you’ll learn about the 7 steps that anyone can take to enhance managerial and leadership success, with a foundation of core business values.
Everyone who works in an organization can recognize people’s behaviors that are driven by their value system. You know who you gravitate to and why. Values help to form common bonds and foster collaborative action. With this, consider how values are linked to your own beliefs and actions, and how values impact the company where you work.
Values aren’t something that you live with because the executives put the words on a poster in the building. You see, all companies operate with their own unique values that you witness first hand, every day. Values guide much of what people and companies do. Therefore, it is important to learn and understand the values and principles that form the fabric of the organization’s mission and to integrate those values into what you do, how you act, and the face you put forward to your team, your managers, and your customers.
Listed next are values that are vital to consider and develop—values that will inspire people to bind themselves to you:
- Employ integrity in everything you do. This is a core value that means you adhere to ethical codes of business and personal conduct. Integrity earns respect from others through consistency, reliability, and honesty. Integrity leads to trust.
- Engender trust. Trust is important because it is easier to influence others when people have faith that you will do the right thing and are consistently sincere.
- Stand for something important. People will identify with you if they know what you represent and that you stand for something meaningful. I often refer to this as “managerial courage”— managers standing up for their convictions and beliefs.
- Meet your commitments. Meeting commitments to people with whom you work and to your customers means you will always be perceived as responsible, trustworthy, and possessing integrity.
- Act professionally. Leaders have an uncanny ability to align personal and business conduct with ethical, professional standards.
- Help or coach others. Helping others is an important way to enhance your visibility while being perceived as altruistic and beneficial to your company. It also sets the stage for greater levels of trust, which builds closer working and, possibly, personal relationships. There are numerous ways to help. Be willing to help people learn more or work through problems; doing so will enable them to grow and optimize their capabilities. Set an example by acting as a role model or mentoring in order to engender greater performance from others.
- Include others. When you include others in your vision for the product, in strategizing, in planning for the future, in leading the team, and in decision-making, people are more likely to commit to your vision and work harmoniously with you to achieve it.
Sometimes, it’s a good idea to step back and see what you’ve done to check in with your value system and consider what it might take to show others what you’re made of. By association, people with whom you work may take cues from you and adjust some of their behaviors. Business acumen isn’t just about a skillset, it includes, but is not limited to, the actions and behaviors you demonstrate every day.