“What we think or what we believe is, in the end, of little consequence. The only thing of consequence is what we do.” – John Ruskin
Leading with intention can be transformational if your actions are meaningful. Intention is the energy that powers all actions. It’s the thought behind a thought or the thought that propels action. It’s the center of your subconscious mind. The more aware you are of your intention, the more you will empower your leadership style and behavior. Your leadership style will bring loyal followers and build long lasting relationships.
How many managers or senior leaders do you know who don’t lead with good intentions? How many times have you said to someone or to yourself “ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS”? All the good intentions in the world don’t mean a thing if you don’t follow through with meaningful actions. Intentions – Actions = NOTHING! The people and teams I have managed over the years told me they were going to change their behaviors, work harder, communicate better, be more engaged and/or promise to learn from their “mistakes.” However, I am amazed to observe other leaders or those who aspire to lead who don’t think twice about falling short of their own actions!
Early in my career, a significant event taught me how leading with intention builds loyalty. My manager told me during a meeting that he would push for my promotion. Months later, I learned that he had never mentioned my name. I found it very disheartening. Nevertheless, I stayed focused on my mission to finish the year #1 AGAIN in sales and remain in contention for the next promotion. The good news came one year later! Not only did I learn the importance of leading with intention, but I also learned never to make a commitment without following through with meaningful action. Loyalty is powerful!
The same holds true for our behavior with friends and family. We make promises we cannot keep or have any intention of fulfilling. We repeatedly fall short of our Intentions with no Actions which equals NOTHING! While it may have no effect on us, it can certainly have consequences in our personal relationships.
True leadership is difficult and takes a great deal of effort. I ask my clients two things – identify their leadership intentions and what success looks like for them. This gives them the opportunity to express their personal and professional goals, action plan, and desired long-term outcomes. It helps me to understand their willingness and intention to take meaningful action. Following through is key!
Compelling LeadershipI challenge you to create a powerful intention that is compelling for you. It is important to understand that it might be uninspiring to others, and vice versa. Only you know if your intention is compelling. If it motivates you and inspires you, it is compelling. If you don’t feel motivated enough or lack desire to move down a path, it’s not compelling. Inspiration, passion and motivation to move forward with something or someone with meaningful action is the true definition of intention.