June, 2017

Lead With A Heart!

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Leaders will often look at the intellectual attributes of being a great leader. They point to great strategy and winning against the competition, but leadership is also about matters of the heart. Leaders should be mindful, authentic, and caring.


Heart-Centered Leadership simply means being compassionate to lead others by having the courage and wisdom to lead with authenticity, transparency, humility and service. They understand that people have the need to be valued, respected, listened to and involved. Upon recognizing and honoring the human element, heart-centered leaders possess the wisdom and capacity to positively convert any organization and run extremely successful and profitable businesses. Anyone can be a heart-centered leader if he or she has a daily commitment and determination to practice certain core principles.


The root or basis of these principles is what we call “the power of the human element.”  Two things are required to tap into and unleash the human element.  The first is your ability to listen or, even better, your ability to learn how to listen. The second is your own willingness to clear personal difficulties, in other words, your own story and organizational obstacles that get in the way of this deeper listening.


Off the top of your mind, what 3 things are different about a heart-centered leader? First, the focus is to serve the people that you are leading, not the other way around. Second, a heart-centered leader tells the truth.  If you are not able to provide information when asked, you must be willing to explain why you aren’t at liberty to share that information. Lastly, a heart-centered leader comes to understand, asking the right questions instead rushing to judgment and assumption.


When I talk about leaders having a big heart, I am talking about these factors:

  1. You are human and if you want to lead others more effectively, they must see you as such. You make mistakes and you have weaknesses when you let others see that and recognize it in yourself, people will see you as more real.
  2. There is a difference between sympathy and empathy and it is important here. Sympathy is a feeling of care and understanding for the suffering and feelings of others. Empathy on the other hand, understands what others are feeling because you have experienced it yourself or can put yourself in their shoes.
  3. Attitude isn’t about logic, it is all emotion. Most leaders restrain the importance of their attitude, but are the first to lament that the attitude of their team isn’t positive.
  4. Build relationship people want to be led by people they know and like. If you want to lead more effectively, find ways to connect with and get to know more about more of your team members.
  5. Ask yourself this question; are you more likely to follow someone you trust, or someone you don’t? Hint – others are just like you so trust matters, a lot. They want to follow someone they trust, and that can be you.

Ultimately, a heart-centered leader leads from principles, virtues and values.

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