After recently posting Parts 1 – 3 of the Bridgeworks’ 6 Fundamental Principles of Leadership, it’s now time to review them and reflect on how your personal leadership can be improved. Let’s take a look…
Fundamental Principles 1 & 2
1. Above all else, know thyself. How well do you know yourself? Your own strengths and weaknesses, and how you deal with high pressure situations.
As a leaders in your own life, whether it is personal or professional, how often do you take time at some point in the day to reflect on your strengths and weaknesses? Do you know when to take a break to re-energize and give your body and mind a rest? Do you know what activities you can turn to when you are stressed out to relieve some stress?
2. Understand the people you are dealing with.
How often do you take the time to build relationships with people you work with? How do they communicate and how does it compare to your communication style? What sort of cultural backgrounds do they come from? What are their personal values and motivators? Where can you be flexible in order to connect with them?
If you haven’t seen my quick video on Principles 1 & 2, watch it here:
Fundamental Principles 3 & 4
3. Take Risks. Great leaders are risk takers. Leaders are people who do things differently to others, they lead people into unknown territory, cross new bridges and they stretch and grow themselves and those who follow them. Leadership is different from management because managers implement and carry out what’s already there, the systems that are already in place for them.
When was the last time you stuck your neck out and took a risk? Do you push yourself to go a little bit out of your comfort zone or do you delegate the tasks that “scare” you onto someone else?
4. Recognize Your Team. Great leaders recognize that there is a great team supporting them all the way. They surround themselves with great people and put in time and energy into creating those teams and tapping into the skills, passions and personalities of the people following them.
Do you give recognition to your team when they deserve it? Do you surround yourself with people who are smart, talented, and ambitious? Do you go out of your way to support them? These small acts will go a really long way with your team.
Watch this quick video on Principles 3 & 4 here.
Fundamental Principles 5 & 6
5. Driven by Values. Sometimes leaders are forced to make some unpopular decisions, but it is their commitment to upholding their values that makes people follow them at the end of the day and in the long run. Leaders who are driven by their values are respected, and respect is at the foundation of all leadership.
Do you abide by your values each and everyday, through every conversation, negotiation, and decision you make? Great leaders know their values and stick to them because people want to follow leaders who have the courage to stick to their values when times get tough… even if it means making an unpopular decision.
6. Have a Cause. Great leaders have a cause that they are passionate about; they want to change lives and make a difference.
Lastly, do you believe in the work that you do? Do you believe that it has an positive impact and improves the lives of others? Do your followers and team members know that you do? How do you remind them that you believe in the work that you do?
The last video is a little choppy due to the 120km/hr winds up top of Mount Ventoux, but the views make the video worth watching.
I hope that this blog post has prompted some thought on your own leadership, both personally and professionally. If there were any Aha! moments or you have anything to add, I would love to read about them in the comments section.
All the best,