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Leadercast’s theme for February is commitment, which is a fitting topic for me as I recently celebrated my 10-year work anniversary. This month, our team is exploring the ins and out of commitment and the different ways it manifests in leadership: How do leaders show their team members they’re committed to them both professionally and personally? How do they build trust? What does it take for leaders to commit to building an organizational culture employees want to be part of? And what steps can leaders take to encourage themselves and their team members to really commit to their organization’s core values?
In my 10 years at Leadercast, we’ve experienced a lot of change. People have come and gone, but no matter who was in the building, one thing remained the same: Leadercast has always remained committed to our purpose of filling the world with leaders worth following. In order to do this, we commit daily to our foundation—those behaviors and values that enable and drive us to pursue our purpose.
Over the years, I have been, and continue to be, challenged professionally and personally by these behaviors and values. To me, a behavior is an actionable word that cannot be sustained unless supported by a strong set of values, which act as the foundation to living out what we believe. At Leadercast, our core values are:
- Authenticity: We strive to consistently present a genuine nature.
- Discipline: The team exercises a commitment to a purpose.
- Excellence: We aim to surpass ordinary standards.
- Integrity: We want to possess honesty and uncompromising morals.
- People First: We put individuals over numbers.
These values are embedded both in our organization, and in the hearts of our staff. They are found in every piece of the work we do as a company. But it’s our behaviors that serve as a reminder of what our mission and passion is and constantly need to be held in focus to line up with our actions. At Leadercast our organizational behaviors are:
1. Beyond You: Another word for putting others needs before our own, ‘Beyond You’ means being selfless. It’s when we are more concerned with the needs of others than with our own and are constantly looking for ways that we can enrich those around us rather than being in it for ourselves.
2. Bravery: This does not mean that we need to accomplish something big like participating in the Olympics or climbing Mount Everest. We demonstrate more bravery or courage when we are fearful yet proceed despite our fears. That shows the most courage of all!
3. Culture: Corporate culture refers to the shared values, attitudes, standards and beliefs that characterize members of an organization and define its nature.
4. Integrity: Having integrity means doing the right thing in a reliable way. It’s a personality trait we admire, since it means a person has a moral compass that does not waver.
5. Simplicity: We have to have clarity in order to maintain simplicity. It is important that we are constantly refocusing and evaluating our journey. We must ask ourselves the question, “How do I show up and participate?” and challenge ourselves not to overthink.
6. Creativity: Daniel Pink makes this statement when talking about creativity, “Giving the world something they didn’t know was missing.” CJ Lyons states that to continue to be creative we should be “living in possibility and abundance rather than limitation and scarcity.” We should constantly help others realize that they can believe in themselves and can reach down inside of themselves and use their gifts to impact others. Jennifer Schmidt shares in her most recent podcast, “Stop counting yourself out, the world needs your greatness. It’s OK not to be perfect.” Give yourself space to dream: Don’t allow the busyness of life to crowd out time to dream, imagine and wonder. In giving yourself the place to imagine and dream, that is where your creativity sparks.
7. Vision: It is important for us to have clarity of vision. A leadership lesson from the Bible, Habakkuk 2:2 says, “Write the vision and engrave it plainly on tablets, so that the one who reads it will run.” Until we understand and simplify our vision, it will be difficult to keep on course. Repetition is a good reminder to keep us moving forward.
My challenge to our team and myself is take seven weeks and apply or implement one of these behaviors each week both personally and professionally. Each week centers around one of these behaviors and we’ve dedicated a space in the break room for our staff to write how they are living out this behavior, or what we can do to better exemplify it as a team. For example, week one focused on the Beyond You behavior and one of the suggestions was to up our recycling game. Now our entire team is participating in our recycling efforts.
Try this exercise with your team and partner with someone you trust to hold you accountable. Just imagine the possibility of your foundation—your behaviors and values— being strengthened and your effectiveness as a leader being impacted to continue to guide those around you.