Every organization whether a church or a business has core values. Statements or beliefs that guide the actions and decisions of the people involved. Sometimes these are clearly stated, other times they are a bit fuzzy.
Leaders who want to be worth following need to develop their own core values to keep them focused on their mission.
These are the three core values I use to help keep me on mission.
Be the Example
Jesus calls his followers to be salt and light (Matt 5:13-14), not to talk about salt and light or point out how others should be saltier or lighter, to be salt and light. At its core, being a leader worth following means Being the Example for others to follow as I follow Jesus.
This value challenges me to share my struggles and failures as well as my successes. A wise mentor of mine often reminded me that, “Sharing your successes creates competitors, sharing your struggles creates compatriots.” People want leaders they can relate to and actually follow as their example.
To check this value I ask myself this question: If someone else did exactly what I did today, would they be worth following?
Invest in Others
There are only two things we get to carry with us through our entire lives, the lessons we learn and the relationships we have with others.
When Jesus, who was the greatest leader to ever live, walked the earth, he spent his time investing in the lives of others. By genuinely caring about and Investing in Others long lasting relationships can develop.
Investing in Others reminds me to serve people, to help them develop as leaders, and to encourage them to take the next step in their leadership. One of my greatest joys is celebrating the success of someone I have invested in.
To check this value I ask myself this question: Who did I help succeed today?
Get a little bit better
Transformation does not happen overnight. Improvement – spiritually, physically, relationally, intellectually – happens incrementally. No one wakes up one morning and is completely physically fit, or a fantastic leader.
As a follower of Jesus, my desire is to be completely transformed into his image. But, I understand that transformation is a process. My focus is not to become completely transformed, but rather to become a little bit more like Christ, a little bit better person. And then trust those little bits will add up over time.
To check this value I ask myself this question: What did I do to get better today?
The core values above only work if I practice them every day. So, every day, I recommit to living my day by these values. And every day I evaluate my performance. Some days I get an A+, other days I completely fail. But every day is a new chance to live my values.
Anytime I feel like taking a day off, I watch this video from an Under Armor ad campaign. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qd-ZtNsNiH4
The tagline is “You are the sum of all your training.” It reminds me that if I take a day off, I am training myself to abandon my values.
To check this value I ask myself this question: How did I do on the three questions today?
What about you?
I have described my core values, what about you? Do you have your own core values? What are they?
If you don’t have values yet, I can help. Grab a Leader Growth Plan slot and let’s discover them together.