guiding principles

What’s Guiding You?

In his book Great By Choice, Jim Collins tells this story:

Two teams of adventurers in 1911 set out on a quest to be the first people in modern history to reach the South Pole. One team succeeded and the other failed.

The successful team lived by one simple principle: to hike 20 miles every day no matter the obstacles. Some days would be easier than others, but their steady commitment to an achievable goal allowed them to realize success. 

The other team didn’t make it back alive. 

Kind of a harsh reality, right? 

How could such a simple principle become the difference between life or death? 

The lesson is the power of guiding principles. What are the principles you live by and lead by?

What are the non-negotiables for you as a leader, for your team and for your organization?

When long-range visions and robust strategic plans feel so 2019, the anchors we need to weather the storm are guiding principles and clarity of purpose

Instead of scraping and clawing for some vision of the future, consider the values that will guide you. Our strategies will require frequent adjustment in the months ahead, but it’s your principles that will keep you tethered to the things that matter most to you. 

You must get clear on why you’re leading and what you’ll lead by. 

Fast forward to a year from now and consider these 4 questions:

  1. What do you hope your team says about your leadership? 
  2. What do you want to be consistently true about you?  
  3. Are you leading for you or are you leading for others?
  4. Will you lead by fear or will you lead by purpose?

The challenges of this year are forcing us to ask deeper questions that I believe will equip us to be stronger leaders for the future. 


Clear, effective values set your team up to win.
Provide your team with clear guiding principles for decision making and rules of engagement for working collaboratively. Join us for this BRAND NEW online course for a proven framework to define and communicate effective team values. Click HERE to enroll today!

Keep leading well!
Jenni Catron and The 4Sight Group

Jenni Catron is a writer, speaker, and leadership coach who consults churches and non-profits to help them lead from their extraordinary best. She speaks at conferences and churches nationwide, seeking to help others develop their leadership gifts and lead confidently. As Founder and CEO of The 4Sight Group, she consults with individuals and teams on leadership and organizational health.

Jenni is the author of several books, including Clout: Discover and Unleash Your God-Given Influence and The 4 Dimensions of Extraordinary Leadership.

Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links, meaning there is no additional cost to you, but I will earn a small commission if you use the links to make a purchase.