Heart-Led Leadership



“If your heart is not right, no one cares about your leadership skills.” — Mark Miller

If you want to lead better, try more heart.

If you win the heart, the mind follows, and that’s not always the case the other way around.

To lead with heart, start with compassion.  If you don’t have compassion for others, chances are you don’t have compassion for yourself, so start there.

A little compassion can grow a long way.

In The Heart-Led Leader: How Living and Leading from the Heart Will Change Your Organization and Your Life, Tommy Spaulding shares insights with us into how heart-led leadership can transform ordinary leadership into extraordinary leadership.

Heart-Led Leadership Builds Trust

Trust it the backbone of high-performance teams.  If you want trust, you need heart.

Via The Heart-Led Leader:

“Anyone can go into a meeting and be comfortable talking about revenue streams or profit margins.  But if you ask someone to talk about themselves, it’s uncomfortable.  That’s a whole other layer there that you’re getting into.

When you sit down in my office and I ask you what your mind is like, what your heart is like, what is happening with your family, that’s uncomfortable, and you have to be a strong and disciplined leader to do it consistently with each of your team members.  But it’s important if you want to build high-performance teams.  Because if you don’t understand someone’s heart, you won’t ever have full trust.”

Lead High-Performance Teams with Compassion

Leading with heart, doesn’t mean being soft.  Leaders with heart can still be demanding, hold people accountable, and have great expectations.  But it does mean having compassion and empathy for the people you lead.

Via The Heart-Led Leader:

“’It’s true that people may think it’s touch-feely,’ he said, ‘but I believe it’s just the opposite.  Come into my office and ask people about me.  No one will say that it’s soft.  I look at this as an investment.  I’m investing in my team and in their hearts.  And the only way to invest in someone’s heart is to show them yours.’

I did, in fact, ask people in Tee’s office about his management style, and they all confirmed that he was a caring but demanding boss. ‘He is not soft by any means,’ Mike Hairston told me. ‘He is very direct in what his expectations are, he is very demanding, and he holds us accountable.  But you can require a high level of performance from your team and still be compassionate.  Just because you have a great heart doesn’t mean you’re a pushover.’”

Win a Different Way with Heart-Led Leadership

Some people try to win by being ruthless or cut-throat.  Another approach is to win through service, innovation, and leadership, in a compassionate way.

Compassion creates connection.  And connection can help you understand the pains, needs, and desired outcomes of those you serve and those you lead.

Via The Heart-Led Leader:

“’We’re not perfect,’ he told me, ‘but what we consider every day is service.  We’ve built our company around the tenets of service, innovation, and leadership

But service is number one. 

How can we serve? That is what we try to live as a company.  Service is when you put others first: your customers, your company, your industry, your community. 

In corporate America, we’re taught to perform, to win.  We’re taught that it’s a dog-eat-dog world.  But I like to think that we can win in a different way.’”

Words from a Heart-Led Leader Running a Billion-Dollar Company

How many smiles does your leadership generate?  Does your service help others have a better day?

If not, maybe you need to re-think your business model.   Maybe some heart-led leadership would help you inject new energy into the system.

Via The Heart-Led Leader:

“Every day I wake up and ask myself, ‘How can I serve today? How can I make someone smile? How can I make their day better? 

That’s the business model I want to have. 

Because the more you can do that, the more you can positively affect others the more successful you will be.”

A Leadership Philosophy that Impacts Your Bottom Line

How well do you take care of the hearts and minds of the people you lead and the people you serve?

How much better do people perform when they know you are there for them?

Via The Heart-Led Leader:

“The truth is, if Greenway Health can become a billion-dollar company using a model that focuses on taking care of people’s hearts and minds on serving and positively impacting others, other organizations can do the same. 

Heart-led leadership is not just a warm and fuzzy approach; it’s not just an idealistic attitude or a way to make employees and customers happier. 

It’s a leadership philosophy that can positively impact your bottom line.  Heart-led leadership is a business model that produces extraordinary love-driven results.  And why wouldn’t everyone want to emulate that?”

Is the secret to better leadership, whether you are leading yourself or others, more heart?

When times get tough, people especially want to be led by people who care, and who make them feel like they count.

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