Last week, I delivered a session to the Afro-Caribbean Business Network (ACBN) at their Success Symposium in Brampton. Among other things we talked about values and the importance of knowing what yours are, for yourself and for your role as a leader! Your values will guide you in how you want to work and how you treat people you work with.
Everyone needs to understand what's important to them. Important things become values. I’m talking about your values, not someone else's ideals or a set of social norms and expectations from your culture.
Someone else's ideas or social norms show up when you hear yourself saying, “I should”, “I need to”. True values can be present when things that others do, drive you crazy, or make you shake your head in disbelief! It might take some digging to figure out what those values are.
The values I am talking about are the “here-and-now” beliefs you hold about how you want to show up. They include your beliefs on how to talk to people; how you listen; how you value others and so much more! Leading from your core values, your here-and-now beliefs that guide your actions you’re able to be authentic, consistent, open.
One of my core values is to be a person other people can always count on, which I believe requires me to be honest, worthy of trust and dependable. When I consider not being that person, in a difficult situation, it really bothers me. That level of discomfort helps guide me back to my core.
If you want to figure this out for yourself spend some time observing what’s important for you. Make a list. Everytime something seems important, just write it down - do not look to see if you have already written it down. At the end of the period you chose (A few days? A full week?), go through the list and see where you have multiple identical or similar entries.These will be some of your top values.
Now from that list choose one thing to watch more closely. How does it show up in a week? How does it help you? How does it hold you back? What would you do differently? Then repeat each week with a different value until you’ve completed your list. Then reach out and I’ll spend half an hour with you to figure out other ways your core values can support you!