I’ll admit, there is a lot more about business and business strategy that I don’t know than I do know. But regardless of what the product, service, size, location or gross revenue is of your company or organization, I can state with confidence that I know the greatest appreciable asset in any business where you are the owner, manager or employee. It’s you. It’s your people.

Sure, you need great products and services combined with solid strategies to develop and sell those products and services, but it’s people that ultimately drive your effectiveness and success. Zig Ziglar reminded us that “You don’t build a business, you build people, and then the people build the business.” That’s why I’ve spent over twenty years being intentional about investing my life in developing our greatest appreciable asset…people.

And that’s why I believe one of our most important jobs as leaders is to invest in the people of our organization. Your team may consist of staff, board members, committee leaders or even volunteers who dedicate their valuable energy and time into the shared success of your organization. But make no mistake, they are the gold at the center of your mine. I believe that to be true because I believe that everything rises and falls on leadership. It’s how we build great teams, organizations, governments, businesses and communities. So by investing in them, and finding ways to add value to them, it will in turn add value to any organization.

One of the reasons I love our work with Chicago Leadership Partners is that we are committed to the belief that people are the strength of any organization. And the common denominator of success in any organization is leadership. It is our conviction that in order for a community to be great it needs great leadership in key influence areas like business, government, education, media, arts, faith and family.

That’s why we treasure any opportunity to add value to others through by training and developing local leaders in those spheres of influence. But whether you’re a CEO, a team member, a manager or a Mother, you can be a leader that adds value to others and increases your influence. Regardless of where you may find yourself leading or influencing, there are some ways you can add value to the greatest assets in your world.

  • Like people. You have to value people in order to add value to them. Make an effort to know and relate to what others value.
  • Listen. You’ve heard the expression that people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. One of the simplest ways to add value and demonstrate that you care is to listen more and talk less.
  • Learn every day. Despite the commonly accepted notion that experience is the best teacher, it really isn’t. Evaluated experience is. As a lifelong learner, adopt an attitude that evaluates the principles and growth lessons you gain every day from the people and experiences in your life.
  • Lead well. Do you influence others well? You can learn to be a better leader and lift the lid on your potential and increase your ability to develop and influence others if you will look every day for ways to add value to yourself and others. An investment in your own growth will pay dividends in the people you lead.
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