If you want to lead your nonprofit with integrity, it would benefit you to learn to use your moral compass to make ethical decisions. In this article, I am going to help you do just that! It will require a wee bit of work from you, though!
An exercise for you
We are going to start with an exercise. First, grab a piece of paper and draw a line down the middle. Then, on the left-hand side, write down a few things that drive you nuts about people.
It could be political leaders, leaders in your organization, or community leaders.
The second part of the exercise
Next, go to the right-hand side of your page and make a list of all the things that you like that people do or how they act. And once again, think about traits of specific leaders that you appreciate and enjoy.
What do your lists mean?
Look over your lists. The things that you just noted are indications of your beliefs, values, and ethics. For example, if you said that lazy people irritate you, you probably value hard work and appreciate a strong work ethic.
When I look at my list, I see that it drives me nuts when people fake kindness. I am suspicious when someone pretends to be caring and thoughtful, yet I know they are only doing it because they are supposed to do it. As a result, I lose trust in them.
Looking at this example helps me realize I value kindness as well as honest and authentic connections.
If you like these kinds of exercises and want to get a deeper understanding of your values, try the Values Verification course here.
You've started to define your moral compass
This exercise helps you to identify your values, ethics, and morals. Your values, ethics, and morals are what guide your moral compass.
How does this apply to your leadership?
First, consider the strategy we are told as leaders regarding giving recognition. If I comment to someone, and that comment does not feel genuine and authentic, it makes me feel icky. That's because it is activating my moral compass and telling me that I'm not sincere.
This is why you need to activate your moral compass
Think of your moral compass as your conscience. It is what guides your words, actions, and decisions. It helps you determine what is right and wrong for you as a leader (and a person). Each of us has a different set of guidelines. I may be ok with fudging numbers (I'm not!), and you may be a by-the-book kind of person! But, we each have to tune into our moral compass to know what's right for us.
It's when we do what's right for us that we lead with integrity. Integrity is walking your talk and leading with authenticity. It's when your actions align with what you believe in.
Help to activate your moral compass
In this week's podcast, I walk you through the Inner Guidance System to help you activate your moral compass. Then, I give you 3 questions you can ask yourself in the ponder stage to help you ensure you are acting, behaving, and making decisions in alignment with your north star.
The second question is: What are my values, ethics beliefs, and morals current that come into play with this choice. You've already started to get clear on that by doing this exercise!
Tune in here to get the other two questions.
When you lead with authenticity, you'll feel better, enjoy your job more, and be a more confident and impactful leader. People will appreciate you, be motivated and inspired by you and as such, loyally follow you! That all feels pretty dang good!
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