Why it Matters to Live and Share Your Leadership Philosophy
Maria-Elena Surprenant has been volunteering at the Center for Creative Leadership® (CCL) with Janet Carlson, a Product and Tools Developer. CCL is known for its powerful influence in the leadership industry. Its mission is to advance the understanding, practice and development of leadership for the benefit of society worldwide. At CCL leadership is defined as an inside-out process. A person needs to start from within themselves, build awareness of who they are, identify their core values, beliefs and reflect on how these impact their life, as well as others.
During Maria-Elena’s time at CCL, she prototyped a digital tool designed to help emerging leaders identify their values and craft a unique philosophy statement centered around their top value. This prototype is meant to prepare users to articulate their values to others in a more meaningful and reflective way.
Through this process, Janet and Maria-Elena dialogued about the importance of practicing these values so that they can make a positive difference in themselves, in the world around them, and share their results with those who have inspired them to be the leaders they are today. Their conversation led to the connection within four aspects of their lives: living, sharing, affirmation and the business world.
Authenticity is something people crave to see in this world. It is infectious. It radiates. It is desired, yet not always sought after. Leaders who take hold of this trait, and apply it to their leadership, have a lasting impact far beyond what they can even imagine. Authenticity in leadership is directly tied to living out one’s leadership philosophy, and one’s core values. The world not only needs more leaders - it is in desperate need of authentic leaders who stay true to what they value most, and share this within their sphere of influence.
When leaders are living out their philosophy, they are, by default, sharing it with others. This is especially important in a microwave society like the United States, where it is more about taking than giving, and less about the process. In some spheres outside of American soil, it is counter- cultural to be a leader. This alone is one of many reasons why one’s leadership philosophy and values are not meant to be contained, but spilled over, poured out into the local community and to the nations around the world.
As human beings, we are all about connection. It’s a basic human instinct to wonder who we are and what our purpose in life is. So when we are told that something we did, or said, was of great value to another human being, it is a beautiful gift. Knowing that a comment, or gesture, created an impact for someone else is an affirmation that we matter, we made a connection and we have a purpose. Wouldn’t it be nice to give and receive that human affirmation?
From a business perspective, the heart of the entrepreneurial space is knowing your core values for yourself, your company, your clients and target market(s). What is the value you are offering to your business partners, clients and the greater community? It is not only about the service or the product, it goes beyond that and runs deep. It is about offering lasting value that will stand the test of time, and satisfy the deepest longings of the heart of those you are serving.
Contributed by Maria-Elena Surprenant