Do you have courage in your convictions? Courage of your convictions happens when you stick by your decision, even when you’re faced with people who don’t support you. This isn’t always easy to do. Yet it’s critical for leaders to develop courage of conviction. When Yum! Brands was being formed, the executive team hired someone who ended up not being a good fit for their culture. The team had to decide between letting that person go, which would lead to a dive in stocks, or keeping him, and consequently communicating to their staff that culture wasn’t as important as they had claimed.
You see, decisions are more difficult as you move up. Leaders have to make the most difficult of decisions and in retrospect, letting the person go was the right decision. But in that moment, the executive team was scared of what would happen. And in reality, the stock did tank and they had to deal with the consequences.
The definition of courage is moving forward in spite of your fears. If you are waiting for fear to go away, that’s not going to happen; that’s where courage of conviction matters.
Building courage in your convictions starts with listening.
Listen to input and reactions from others with your mind open to the possibility that they might be right. But when you feel strongly that the input is not right for you, then you have to choose courage in your convictions and move forward with your plan. People will respect you for listening, considering all opinions, and then making a decision and moving on. Don’t cave to people’s ideas to make them feel validated or to avoid conflict. Rather, seriously consider what’s said and make the right call. If you are still unsure, seek any additional knowledge needed by conducting research and/or asking a mentor or trusted colleague. Then move ahead by turning your intentions into action.
Where do you need to find courage in your convictions? Use the tips above to help you.
If you want more great leadership tips, check out our leadership course, which gives in-depth advice on how to become the best leader you can be.
Gregg Dedrick is a business executive, strategist and consultant with over 30 years of experience in personal and organizational transformation. Gregg’s tenure and experience as the past President of Kentucky Fried Chicken and Chief People Officer of Yum! Brands – the world’s largest restaurant corporation – has positioned him as a highly effective coach and teacher. Gregg understands that at the heart of every successful organization are the people who believe in it and bring it to life.
During his tenure as Chief People Officer, Gregg was credited with the development of Yum! Brands’ world-renowned recognition culture in partnership with David Novak. He has traveled around the globe teaching leadership and cultural transformation. He draws on his relationship with recognized business leaders – from global brand presidents to championship coaches – to tell the hard-learned lessons of leading others the right way.
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