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How to Become a Leader in Education: The Importance of Values.

Introduction

Our values are a unique blueprint of who we are. They can’t be forced on us and we are not born with them.

Values are not needs such as the need for food, security or love.

Our values are our essential self – the core of who we are.

Having clear values simplifies decision making and brings focus and clarity.

So, when coaching emerging leaders, I challenge people to identify their own values and to use them personally and when leading others. 

“Ragini gave me a range of strategies to support me when confronting matters at work and ensuring I always linked my reasons why back to my values and who I am. I am now so much happier with my work, my team and, ultimately, I am proud of myself. Encouraging me to reflect on my values and truths with words of affirmation has been fundamental to me realising my abilities.”

Kirsty Fletcher

My Deepest Value

When analysing my values, integrity is always my deepest value; my heart value. The Random House Dictionary defines integrity as: 

  • Adherence to moral and ethical principles;
  • Soundness of moral character; honesty. 
  • The state of being whole, entire or undiminished. 
  • A sound, unimpaired or perfect condition.

What resonates with me the most is the concept of being whole and undiminished.

I believe that we can grow and develop into greater wholeness.

This is not about an unattainable perfection, but is about having an attitude that we can change for the better.

Values are personal, reflect our uniqueness and demonstrate our authenticity.

Core Values

Integrity plus creativity and excellence are my core values.

Definitions of words vary but for me creativity is

  • the ability to develop and express ourselves and our ideas in new ways.
  • going beyond the usual. 
  • about perseverance and determination.

It is about how we explore ideas or find different ways to solve issues and how we apply our unique experiences of life.

Excellence is

  • having a benchmark or standard. 
  • creating quality.
  • respecting people by offering something of value.

And because creativity and excellence are not about perfection or striving for an ideal, life is more restful and joyful.

S.P.I.C.E.

Spices are a powerhouse.

As well as improving the flavour and aroma of food, specific spices have health benefits such as reducing inflammation.

So when I was asked to define my business values, I loved that my values are spicy 

  • Support
  • Possibilities
  • Integrity
  • Creativity
  • Excellence

Having clear values simplifies decision making and brings focus and clarity.

This is why, when coaching, I challenge people to identify their own values and to use them consistently in every relationship – personally and professionally. 

Becoming a Leader in Education

In my experience, leaders in education are more effective and have greater job satisfaction after they have invested time thinking about their personal values.

Values are so varied – influence – educate – honour – originality – experiment are just a few.

Whether it’s fun and individualism; or freedom and creativity or kindness and equipping, our values reflect our uniqueness and authenticity.

Leaders who live in their values are less likely to negatively compare themselves to others and to spend time needlessly competing.

Are you unsure about what your values are? Simply spend some time thinking through what your core beliefs are as you meditate on this quote:

Your beliefs become your thoughts, your thoughts become your words, your words become your actions, your actions become your habits, your habits become your values, your values become your destiny.

Mahatma Gandhi

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