5 ways to step up and become a moral leader

Members of a honour guard prepare themselves for an official welcoming ceremony for Bolivia's President Evo Morales in Tehran September 1, 2008. Picture was rotated 180 degrees. REUTERS/Morteza Nikoubazl (IRAN) - GM1E4911Q3801

Moral leaders provide values and meaning for people to live by. Image: REUTERS/Morteza Nikoubazl

Avery Blank
Contributor, Forbes
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Moral leadership is providing values or meaning for people to live by, inspiration to act and motivation to hold oneself accountable. When you don’t see someone stepping up to provide purpose and doing what is best for the greater good, step up.

Leadership is a responsibility. It’s also a power, not to be taken for granted. The late author Toni Morrison said, “If you have some power, then your job is to empower somebody else.” Your best self is when you use your power to lead others. Here are five ways to develop moral leadership:

1. Identity a set of values

Moral leaders guide themselves with values and ethics that they develop over time and with experience. Examples of values include integrity, respect, accountability, community, inclusion, fairness and service.

What experiences have shaped your thoughts and views? Be introspective. Think about the principles by which you live your life.

2. Manage your ego

Moral leaders have a sense of self and are not threatened by others. But they also recognize that their self is not the most important thing and that leadership is not about them. Leadership is about serving others. It is not about you or your interests. True leaders value other people and put the interest of others first.

3. Consider diverse groups of people, and include their views

Leaders do not impose their values on others. They consider other people’s values. They interact with and understand others. The combination of their values and the values of diverse groups inform a vision for a better future.

4. Embrace change

People seek moral leadership when they want change. Leaders don’t fear change. They have the courage and conviction to share a vision to try and bring about positive change.

5. Build consensus, and establish unity

It is rare that everyone will be onboard with your opinion or views (learn about the 20-60-20 rule). A leader listens to people with different views. A leader knows not to try and win everyone over.

Leaders also know not to create divisions. Moral leaders do their best to communicate a purpose that can inspire as many people as possible to want to take part in enacting positive change for the greater good.

Moral leadership is something everyone can strive for. It can be difficult to attain, but it is worth the challenge for yourself and those around you. Know your values, check your ego at the door, embrace others, be transformative and seek unity. Take responsibility to build a better world for all.

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