Leading with Purpose

When we think of leadership, a number of personal characteristics come to mind; honesty, integrity, respect, gratitude and so much more. We also want our leaders to be authentic and self-driven, we want them to lead us by example. While these are important characteristics to have there is something else I believe is vital to being an effective leader. Knowing and sharing your purpose, your Why.

Being clear on why you do what you do makes a significant difference when you are engaging your team. Giving them a purpose for those tasks that they are expected to do creates a big picture vision for them to engage with.

The reason for your organization to exist is more important than any strategic goals or objectives you may have in place. Achieving those objectives is the result of performing well as a leader and as a team, it is not a reason to exist. Your purpose is.

Running a business or a team brings with it many challenges. Sometimes those challenges can seem overwhelming. When you have your purpose in mind you have the ability to see the bigger picture and keep those challenges in perspective. They are just one part of the journey, you can get back on track and keep moving forward towards your vision and purpose.

With that vision and purpose always in your mind the challenges are recognised for what they are, temporary. They may be game changers but they are not the end. The bigger picture is still there, you may have to take a side step, but the purpose has not changed. You know why you are working, you know what your vision is, you can deal with the challenges you face right now.

Your purpose gives you reason to keep going. It also gives your team reason to stand beside you and deal with the challenges head on.

The most significant aspect of knowing your purpose well is the clarity it brings with it. Once the vision is clear, determination and courage soon follow. You are not making decisions with no idea of the outcome, you weigh them up and consider how they contribute to your purpose and your long term vision.

As you become clear on your purpose your strategic leadership map becomes easy to navigate. You know where you are going and now you can plan how you will get there. Each decision is carefully considered with your purpose in mind.

Knowing your purpose and incorporating that into your strategic leadership plan is not always the simple or the most obvious option, but it is always the right one.

The right path is not always the easy path. With your purpose at the forefront of your mind when it comes to running your business, there is no question that it is the right path.


Alison Vidotto is the award winning author of 22 Leadership Fundamentals; the Door to Success says Push! A leadership keynote speaker and trainer, CEO of Vidotto Group and Founder of the Australian Charity for the Children of Vietnam (www.accv.net.au) Alison has a passion for leadership and development, both within herself and in others. She writes leadership articles for the Australian Business Women's Network (http://www.abn.org.au/blog-list/leadership/) Alison has also been published in the...

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