The Importance of Core Values in Leading an Enterprise
In order to become an unstoppable leader at your job, in the community or within an organization, it’s important to have role models that can teach you what they’ve learned. Intentional Greatness is a podcast that provides interviews and insight into women in business who’ve broken through the glass ceiling without compromising their core beliefs. Take a look at what the women entrepreneurs in this month’s podcasts have to teach us.
Stay Nimble and Flexible
Like the point guard or head coach on a basketball team, the CEO doesn’t really get to have a bad day. It’s more important than ever to stay nimble and flexible in businesses that now have five generations of workers striving to work together. Pam Borton is a top-performing ICF executive and leadership coach, professional keynote speaker, author, entrepreneur, and former women’s basketball coach for the Minnesota Gophers (the most winningest coach in history, I might add). She recently spoke about the importance of flexibility in running a corporation.
Whether working within a business or aspiring to be leaders in an organization, women in the C-suite or in a position of leadership need to build a team of loyal people they enjoy working with. Entrepreneurs should not be afraid to hire people who are smarter than themselves. That way, the leader can confidently let go and let people do their jobs.
Another phenomenon, which Pam attributes to “analysis paralysis,” is passed from employee to employee. It’s indicative of an organization with no cognitive flexibility, especially in its leadership. In order to overcome this and build an organization committed to independent thinking and a shared vision, business leaders must be willing to adapt. This is particularly true in medium-sized and larger businesses.
Lead with Kindness
Leading with kindness requires integrity, compassion, humility, gratitude, authenticity, and humor. These may not be the first things that come to mind when many people envision their corporate leaders. But these traits tend to trickle down in organizations where they are valued, and the results are often evident in the company’s bottom line.
As CEO of Great Clips hair salons, Rhoda Olsen grew the company from 1,000 franchises to over 4,200 during her tenure. Leading with kindness is one of her core values. A cancer survivor and philanthropist, Rhoda has learned the importance of kindness, paired with accountability, in getting the best results from the people who worked with her.
Values and accountability are important whether you’re a woman in business or the mother of children living at home. Leading with kindness and caring deeply about people can inspire greatness at every level of the corporation. Giving back often becomes important to women entrepreneurs who’ve been blessed with success.
“Fear is the mind-killer … I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.” -Frank Herbert
Fear can have a negative impact on self-confidence and productivity. Overcoming fear and self-doubt liberates women in business so that they can concentrate on results. Overcoming self-doubt is a continual battle for female entrepreneurs, such as Alexander Stieglbauer, 26, and Sue Hawkes, 54, who discuss how this impacts women at different levels of their careers. Women executives all too often see themselves as an ‘imposter’ and fraud in the careers and positions they’ve earned.
Ali discusses how she deals with being the youngest person in the room without giving in to self-doubt. In order to overcome self-doubt, it’s important to:
- Stop Making Excuses. Self-doubt causes people to rationalize situations. It can cause women entrepreneurs to fear failure and remain reluctant to take on more responsibilities, which can hamper their careers.
- Raise Your Self-Awareness. Self-awareness is the most powerful weapon you can have in your quest for personal development. Use it to get to the root of your self-doubt. Ask yourself what triggers bouts of self-doubt?
- Stop Asking For Validation. Seeking the advice of coworkers and direct reports is helpful. However, continuously asking others’ opinion might weaken your trust in yourself.
Listen to Your Inner Voice
There’s no real proof that intuition and psychic abilities exist. Science has so far not been able to prove paranormal phenomena is an experimental setting. However, that doesn’t stop people from believing in it. Some leaders have the courage to speak openly about their gifts and even rely on them to make important business decisions.
Laurie Wondra is a global IT executive, life coach, author, shaman and spiritual medium who has learned to overcome skepticism about her abilities. She has a unique perspective on how important it is for women in business to carve out their own niche for success—her personal journey combines the science of technology with metaphysics.
There are so many unknowns about how the human mind works, although most experts agree that we only consciously use a fraction of our brain power. Because there’s often an aversion to trusting in the sixth sense and intuition, it’s important for women leaders to back up their beliefs with data. It’s important to cultivate business acumen so that hunches and gut reactions can be framed within a knowledgeable framework. This lets you deliver a difficult message to skeptics.
Renee Powers founded the Feminist Book Club, a monthly subscription box providing feminist literature and self-care products to women and queer business owners and leaders. Renee relates how stress impacted her life and eventually led to a health crisis.
As stress increases, performance lags and leaders can jeopardize their physical and emotional health. Understanding the dangers of stress and developing coping mechanism is important for women in business to optimize their work and non-work lives.
Intentional Greatness is about providing a community where women leaders can learn from one another and how aspiring female entrepreneurs can achieve their goals by cultivating confidence, kindness, patience and other qualities needed to become effective, passionate leaders. This month’s podcasts include dynamic leaders who have already done so successfully.