7 Personal Values as a Leader

I write about leadership. I try to keep it personal. I don’t always accomplish everything perfectly that I write about, but my goal is to be a growing leader.

One critical aspect of leadership, in my experience, is to be aware of the values one holds. As in life, each leader has certain values that are especially and even uniquely important to him or her. Without thinking about it, we typically will favor those values in the way we lead others…when we make policies, in the way that we manage and the issues which get our greatest attention. Because we make decisions based on what we value, it’s important that a leader understand what he or she values in leadership and to recognize also that others may hold values which are different from ours.

Have you ever considered your personal values as a leader?

I’ve spent time over the years realizing the things I tend to value most in leadership. Those whom I lead can probably clearly see these displayed in my leadership. This doesn’t mean other values aren’t important…perhaps even more important…but that these are the ones most important to me.

Here are my top 7 values as a leader and why I hold them:

Responsiveness – I believe leaders are required to be responsive to those they wish to lead. If people don’t hear from you they make up their own scenarios, become afraid, and lose interest and motivation. (I’ve written about that before HERE.)

Accountability – Leaders are extremely vulnerable individuals. Sometimes the leader is the last to know there is a problem. Power in leadership can lead to problems with pride and corruption. (I believe and practice this personally and have written about it numerous times. You can read one HERE. I even offer specific consulting to help leaders in this area.)

Grace – No leader ever gets to the top without a tremendous amount of grace along the way. Isn’t it only fair that a leader reciprocates the grace received into grace given? (I write about grace and forgiveness frequently. You can find several HERE.)

Authenticity – If a leader wants people to follow, he or she must be trustable. That requires realness and transparency. (I wrote specifically about that HERE.)

Integrity – Leaders are taking people places where they may not be completely comfortable going. If a leader has been granted trust, he or she should honor that trust with honest and moral leadership. (I’ve frequently written about this value. You can find one instance HERE.)

Change – Organizations that stand still die. Change brings momentum and creates opportunities for growth. Leadership development happens best during change. (I’ve written about this in my personal life HERE and numerous times organizationally, such as HERE.)

Intentionality – Nothing happens without action. You can have the greatest dreams and they will remain only a dream without a plan, a strategy, a system and genuine effort. (Intentional is a word I use frequently with our staff and challenge it in our church. You can read a post example HERE.)

What are your personal values as a leader (or person)? I’d love to hear your top 7. They will most likely be different from mine, but that’s what makes the world of leadership so interesting. Different leaders…different values.

(I previously wrote 7 non-negotiable traits to work on my team. Those are different from values in that I can require them. I can’t always require everyone hold the same values I have…although I’m confident I subconsciously look for them in the people we hire.)

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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11 thoughts on “7 Personal Values as a Leader

  1. Ron, your personal values is carry go what i mean is that anyone can adopt . very simple but it is closely related to my,this are my own value.

  2. Thanks for sharing your values. I never gave so much attention to values until God called me to impart essential values to the young generation especially to high school students. In our Philippines Sunbeam Value Formation and Leadership Training youth camps we impart values using the 7 colors of the rainbow. Red for Love, Orange for Courage, Yellow for Obedience, Green for Honesty, Blue for Peace, Indigo for Humility, and Violet for Industry. Such youth camps are also graced by God's beautiful bower up in the sky. Many student-campers have come to know the Lord Jesus Christ as their own personal Lord and Savior through these Sunbeam Value Formation youth camps. I believe this is what America needs in stopping violence in schools. The students need to have values re-orientation. Instead of putting more guns in schools why not start value formation and leadership training programs among the youth? We can target the troubled youths first as our campers. We have done this 40 times in the past 7 years and we have seen how these troubled young people experience radical changes in their attitudes and behavior. Let us do it here in USA.

  3. Ron, this is another outstanding exercise. Here are the 7 traits/values that I aspire to demonstrate with my team:
    -flexibility – being able to adapt to situations is important.
    -ethical – all my conduct and actions must be tethered to unchanging truths.
    -peaceable – try to keep my inner man at peace despite external variables.
    -perseverance – this is critically important in every area of my life.
    -active listening – this is necessary for alignment and team cohesiveness.
    -genuine – this is similar to your value of transparency and authenticity.
    -graciousness – shouldering the blame and sharing the reward are key to inspiring the team.

    Thanks for the opportunity to share!

  4. One I value: Clarity.

    You don't always have to know what's right — but don't be afraid to admit you're unsure. Be clear about it. You don't always have to have the perfect plan, but be upfront about your process. A person with muddled thoughts or muddy communication style is just too difficult to work with.

    Your list is great though!