At the very core of the work I do is a value, a belief, and a point of view of the world. This drives everything I stand for and how I relate to others. Years ago, I mined the variegated fields of the work I do seeking to uncover what fundamentally drives me. What are my core beliefs?
At the very molten center arose this truth: I believe that we, as human beings, are always operating from a fundamental position of love. Or fear. Everything we do originates here. Love or Fear – that's it! We are either acting from a place of love for others: a true desire to see others cared for, to succeed, and to thrive. Or we are acting from a place of fear: distrustful, disrespectful and defensive, to protect ourselves. These are both very natural and common reactions to behavior.
This said, leaders don’t often stop to think, “Am I doing this out of a place of love, or fear?” Yet every choice that is made, every reaction, and every decision arises from one of these two places. Love or Fear. A follow up call to a potential sales client, for example. Are you worried that the deal might not go through (fear) or wanting your client to have the best service possible (love)? Checking in on a business partner: concerned about how they are doing (love) or searching to see if they are on your side of an issue (fear). A new work from home policy: trusting that people will behave professionally (love) or protecting the business from potential abuse (fear.)
So, a Leadership Challenge: Where are YOU operating from? Pick any recent business decision, even one you might have made today. Do you believe in the inherent goodness of people or are you protecting yourself from others? Do you believe your employees want to show up and do good work, or are you preoccupied with worry that they are not living up to your expectations? Having the courage to challenge your own operating biases could be a game changer as a leader! Identifying the root of your questioning and expectations, whether in love or fear can lead you to an “Ah Ha” moment for you and your leadership style.