In my opinion, true leadership emanates from the inner self which inspires and steers the team towards an organization’s purpose guided by it’s defined values.

In the above statement for me, four words emerge prominently inner self, inspires, purpose and values, which is what I will describe in some details later. Like many, I have also learnt by observing many great and ‘not so great’ leaders in my career spanning over 23 years. However, I must admit that I have always been blessed with great teams which have been my greatest teachers.

Inner self : As mentioned in Bhagwat Geeta the greatest journey or realization for any human is to move from the physical realm to the realm of self-righteousness. Great leaders are those who are able to reduce (if not remove) self-delusion through living by the virtues, overcoming the ignorance and conquer Passion. This has always helped leaders to consistently and constantly adapt to the newer scenarios and challenges via seamless merging with teams and emerge as winners.

Inspires : Leadership needs to inspire the team through their selfless stand for the values and purpose of the organization. Time and again this has differentiated great leaders from great managers, especially in the times of crisis and decision making.

Purpose : Purpose is like a calling which helps teams and stakeholders to align together and it becomes their reason for existence. It is imperative for a leader to define that purpose which stitches together the short, medium and longer-term strategy for an organization and this creates immense trust and passion in the team.

Values : Values drive profitability and ethics sustains it, for any organization. A most important resource for any organization is - us the humans - and to bring them together leadershave to invest in developing culture through a defined set of values. Stronger is the alignment to values, profitable the organization is likely to be.

The above are my learnings from observing some of the great leaders and successful organizations which they have created. These remain bedrock and in fact, bring in both strength and adaptability in the leadership to overcome any short or medium-term challenges. Are these elements easy to conquer, I can’t say I am still trying!!

Image source-SMHFC

Vineet Chattree

Managing Director, Svatantra Micro Housing Finance Corporation Limited