Who am I? – value driven or position driven?

I am a father of four, a husband of one wife (who I started dating 18 years ago) and, for some more months, the leader of a community in Constanta, Romania.

I can mention that I am a part of planting a church, helping different organizations, working with some childrens homes, traveling and working in the area of the Balkans.

I can make a a CV, but the question comes “Who am I?”. When all the titles are gone, the roles are not there and it’s silent? Who am I then?

I believe strongly in values. All people have them and some are more conscious about them than others. We also have them in family life. Here is one of ours: we value having people in our home. My wife and I love making dinner and serving our guests. Even my children are asking every day, “Who is coming today?” and if the answer is “no one”, you can see their faces saying “oh come on…”

In leadership we have values too, here is one of mine – I value leadership in teams. In our community I have with me a leadership team of 6 people, all of them gifted in different areas. I also have a fantastic staff team, though these 6 are main leaders. They are not there to answer when I am gone, or there to be a sounding board or give me advice, they are there to be a team of leaders!

Values are principles made personal!

Values are principles made personal and this makes all the difference, it makes it personal. If you want to lead out of values they need to be yours.

Just recently I worked with an organization that had nice values, but I did not see the leaders acting upon them, they were not personal. What happened is that the organization went from value based to position based leadership – meaning position became the factor that determined the direction of the organization.

When things become mine, and they are valuable to me, then position is not as important as it was for me. I did not have anything to go to when I made the decision of stepping down from leadership in YWAM Constanta, but I did not have the need for one because I knew what I was up to, position or not. When you are a leader leading out of values then you are secure in those values.

Today I do know what I am going to do, and somehow there came a position as well, but I am glad I made the decision long before that challenge came.

Leading out of values, means that you lead out of your security, who you are or choosing to become. Leaders are people that understand their values and lead out from them, you can find these in organizations like the one I am a part of. We have 18 core values and two of them are leading in a team and to be hospitable, two great ones and when we make them happen that’s when YWAM becomes its best.

Till next time, let’s value values and let’s be leaders of values.

Rune Sæther

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