6 Ways to Lead with Heart

Lead with heart to get above the fog.

Lead with heart to get above the fog. Image of a foggy forest.

6 ways to lead with heart:

#1. Get above the fog.

Purpose is about heart. Declare the purpose of meetings before people show up, for example. Set goals with deadlines.

Lead with heart by bringing up tough topics with openness.

#2. Strengthen relationships between others.

You enrich people when you provide opportunity to build relationships with others.

I hadn’t talked with John Spence in years; so I reached out. We connected and he introduced me to philosopher Tom Morris. A coaching client introduced me to a corporate leader at Chick-fil-A Supply. A friend and long-time reader of Leadership Freak introduced me to executive coach Heath Diekart. An editor at BenBella introduced me to David Adler, founder of BizBash.

Relationships enrich life.

#3. Provide a steady hand on the rudder.

Anxious leaders have anxious followers.

Don’t add to anxiety unnecessarily. Provide stability; establish rituals at work.

  1. Greet people with a smile and eye contact.
  2. Walk around once or twice a day.
  3. Be known for asking some of the same questions. When you ask the same questions, people know what matters.
The only reason to open your mouth is to make something better. Image of baby birds with open mouths.

#4. Say nice things to people.

Problems, pressure, and stress make being nice unusual. Don’t lower standards to be nice. Lead with heart.

Don’t confuse tough with mean.

Don’t turn coaching into criticizing.

Only open your mouth to make things better.

#5. Practice challenge AND support.

Ask two questions before your one-on-ones.

  1. How can I challenge people to challenge themselves?
  2. How can I support people without creating helplessness?

#6. Give people control.

Control freaks make lousy leaders. Talent likes to drive the boat.

Set a clear coarse and get out of the way.

Control freak question: How can I give control to others?

How can leaders lead with heart?

Still curious:

4 Ways to Become a Leader with an Open Heart