The “authentic” values-based leader needs to be able to…..
1. Discern and clarify for yourself on what foundation do you base your ethical decisions.
• What’s negotiable/not negotiable; what’s acceptable/not acceptable and why?
2. Realize that people make decisions on the values they hold dear.
• Everybody speaks their “truth”. It may not THE truth, but it’s their truth, and it’s their truth based on what they value. At this point, it is not right or wrong, it just is.
3. Understand that ethical principles are not concerned with how things do operate, but how they should operate.
• There is an implied moral obligation not just to understand ethical principles but to personally integrate them in order to guide your people to the desired end.
4. Embrace the reality that the most difficult decisions to make are those in which there is a conflict between two principles you deeply believe in.
• Examples would be: trust vs. loyalty; justice vs. mercy, etc. Then the challenge is how do you facilitate the resolution of that conflict.
5. Determine in advance what one’s priorities are, realizing that a lot will depend on the situation.
• The goal here is not to “water down” your priorities based on the situation, but rather how will your priorities be applied and communicated based on the situation.
So here’s the ethical “line in the sand.” If a leader doesn’t take the time to get the necessary knowledge, training, etc. to be more effective and develop strategies to incorporate these 5 points into one’s leadership style, your effectiveness is will be seriously hampered and consistently challenged.