Leadership values evolving

Accepting feedback overtakes traditional command-and-control style
By Dave Crisp
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 09/03/2008

Are values important for leadership? If so, can they be taught or improved? Such questions often arise in discussions of leaders’ effectiveness and training needs.

People hold dozens of values in many areas of life. Some are idealized as universals, such as honesty, and encouraged in everyone. However, values don’t exist in a vacuum and competing needs and desires can affect the priority an individual places on them.

An HR manager may believe he values honesty so highly he would report violations or quit if his boss steps over the line. Yet when confronted with such a situation, he may settle for indirect hints. The manager’s desire for remaining employed, his loyalty to his boss or the company, or other emotional factors may help rationalize a minor inconsistency with his values.