My favorite magazine is Entrepreneur. I must admit my heart skips a beat when it arrives in my mailbox. This time was certainly no exception, especially when I saw the featured article was on one of my favorite subjects … leadership. So I opened the March 2016 edition and flipped ahead to the article, anxious to see what new words of wisdom awaited me. There were 22 “Must-Have Leadership Qualities” laid out before me. Good stuff – like focus, passion, decisiveness and empowerment. But sadly I saw what I believe to be two of the most important qualities missing!
Integrity was the first missing. #4 on the list was Integrity, but from the right/wrong, moral/immoral use of the word. Missing was integrity from it’s original meaning … being whole and undivided (complete). A bridge has integrity when it is whole and complete. Structurally sound. A bridge is neither right nor wrong. It is neither moral nor immoral. It is just a bridge … being a bridge. But if it is not whole and complete, it is destined to collapse. A leader’s measure as to having integrity can be answered with one question. Do the people I interact have it that I do what I say I am going to do, when I say I am going to do it? If the answer to that question is “Yes,” and they believe what you say you are going to do is worthy of admiration, people will follow you to the ends of the earth. Literally.
The second missing was Creating a Brand. A strategic partner, Crystal Smith of Shine Consulting, said it best when she said “One’s brand is measured by what people say about your company when you’re not listening.” Think about that for a moment. That embodies not only your marketing, but your principles, values and culture as well. The strength of your brand can be measured by a question as well. “Does the conversations that go on between your employees, your colleagues, your peers, your customers, your vendors and your competitors mirror the values and mission you have set out for your company?” If they do, then you have built a strong brand.
Perhaps this insight will trigger something in you that will transform you, your company, your family and/or your world. I am anxious to hear about your journey.