Somewhere someone has been empowered by you.
Somewhere someone has done an act of kindness because of you.
Somewhere someone has taken on a challenge because of you.
Adding value doesn’t occur by accident, nor is it something that happens on its own, like the tides. The best leaders add value intentionally by knowing what is important and making choices based on that knowledge.
But true leaders know that the question, whether they are adding value, is not the only question, they are also asking themselves if they are subtracting value too.
Are you adding value to yourself or subtracting value from the person who matters the most?
Are you acquiring new skills? Are you spending your time on improving your competencies? Are you working on your leadership and adding value to your life, or are you squandering your time with the same old- same old?
Are you adding value to your team or subtracting value from those you care about the most?
Are you delegating to others to show that you trust them? Are you eliminating the barriers that make others feel useful and important? Are you allowing your team to step into their roles and step out with their talent? Or are you controlling and micromanaging? Do you need to pull back from doing and spend more time advising?
Are you adding value to your family or subtracting value from those you love the most?
Do you hold family paramount? Do you remember to cultivate a relationship with your family, to give something to and for them on a daily basis? Sometimes we get busy and we forget to make the time. Are you checked in or checked out? Make family a priority, and make decisions that benefit those you love. The concept of making a difference for your family holds families together in tough times as well as good.
Are you adding value to the things you hold dear or subtracting value from what you regard the most?
There is a cause or an issue out there with your name on it—something important to you, someplace where you can serve and make a difference in a way that is unique to you. Have you sought it out and cultivated involvement? Are you devoting energy every day into making a difference or are you waiting for the right time, right place, right people to appear in your life?
Many times we are subtracting value without even realizing it, but true leadership is always being mindful and always asking am I adding or subtracting?
To be the most successful as a leader, find the time to ground yourself daily in the things that are most important to you: Your own leadership, your team, your family, your passions.
Lead From Within: Stop and think. Are you adding value or subtracting value? Think hard where you want to concentrate your efforts, and where you most want to make the most difference because that is where you leadership and life begins.
[box]Lolly Daskal is the president and Founder of Lead From Within a consulting firm specializing in executive leadership coaching and customized leadership programs. Connect with Lolly Daskal. [/box]
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Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR, Inc.com, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.