If you want to own a business or just become a leader in your field of interest, I have great information that will guide you as you develop your leadership skills. I read a magazine called “Succeed Botswana” – it is an entrepeneur’s best friend – I suggest you purchase it if you live in Botswana. It only costs P20.
In the March 2011 edition, came an insightful booklet talking about leading and motivating your team. We will discuss principled leadership, taken from Steven Covey’s Principle-centered leadership.
The principle centered leadership approach depends on four interdependent dimensions:
1. Security: Your sense of worth, identity and self-esteem.
2. Guidance: Direction received in life, governing decision-making and doing.
3. Wisdom: Your judgement, comprehension and integrated wholeness.
4. Power: Your capacity to act, courage to accomplish and energy to make choices.
According to Covey, your principles must be the centre of these four dimensions and govern them, so you must practise the following from the inside out:
1. Trustworthiness at a personal level comes when character (what you can do) are present.
2. Trust at an interpersonal level: Trust is an emotional bond between people and creates win-win situations.
3. Empowerment at a managerial level: Don’t supervise, rather, be a source of help in the attainment of succesful results by your team.
4. Alignment at organisational level results in a flat, flexible company structure with an aligned strategy and systems.
A principled-centered leader continually learns, reads and asks questions. Be service-oriented and see life as a mission, always serve, help and think of others. If you read the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, you will see that Jesus was a principle-centered leader, and that he embodied all the above qualities. That is why His Ministry was and still is succesful and influential today. We can learn a lot about leadership by just reading the New Testament and getting to know Him. Be positive, happy and optimistic to attract positive people and sidestep negative people. Believe in other people’s potential and do not hold grudges. The three character traits evident in principle leadership are:
1. Integrity: Valuing yourself by developing self-awareness.
2. Maturity: Striking a balance between courage and consideration.
3. Abundance mentality: Believing there is enough for everybody, which flows from your sense of personal worth and security.
The process takes time, patience, understanding and trust. Personal growth is a process with no shortcuts and every person is at a different stage. Look inside to understand your weaknesses and build the strength to overcome them. I would add in that you must include God by praying about your weaknesses because the Bible says that He is our strength in our weaknesses.
I am sure that this article has helped you. In the next edition we will look at communication lines and Covey’s 7 Deadly Sins.
Information: Core Principles of a strong leader by Succeed Magazine, March 2011. Principles derived from Steven Covey’s Principle -centered leadership, published by Simon & Schuster.