The Absolute Best Reason for Bringing Values to Leadership

I am very blessed to have CEO Connection as one of my clients.

It’s an organization connecting CEOs of companies with more than $100 million in revenues and I spend time with the CEOs early on in their membership as Co-Chair of the Membership Committee.

One of the perks of the job is that I am able to attend the annual CEO Boot Camp that takes place in Chicago every November, with this year’s event taking place earlier this week.  An intimate group of CEOs from companies around the world, representing some major brands – and some you’ve never heard of - gather to share insights and experiences that will enable them to be stronger leaders.

Over time I’ll be sharing with you some general nuggets of wisdom that were unearthed during the course of the event.  The one I wanted to share first particularly struck me as we were discussing what kinds of skill sets CEOs look to hire.

The nugget was this, “I hire for values more than skills because that way I know what they believe in.  I look for aspiration instead of ambition because it’s more pure.”

Never had I heard a more resounding testimonial for values by someone at that level of an organization – one that didn’t sound like company-speak.

He wants to know what the people working with him genuinely believe in and he wants their intentions to be pure.

Though we did not further discuss this as a group I’d like to posit the following:

  • Knowing what your team member believes in and that their intentions are of the highest repute enables you to trust them
  • Being able to trust and be trusted is a requirement for highly effective teams and organizations
  • As a leader, letting your followers see the truth about what you really believe in enables them to trust you
  • If your followers trust you, they’ll be more likely to follow you with conviction
  • What you really believe in is the heart – the North Star – of your larger vision

All of which led me to deduce that bringing your values to your leadership approach – and letting others see who you truly are and what you believe in – may be your greatest predictor of success.

What has your experience been?  Do you hire for values and if so, how has it impacted your organization? I'd be honored to hear from you...

Photo is first light by paul (dex).