A Leader’s Core Values

2 Samuel 8:15
“And David reigned over all Israel; and David executed judgment and justice unto all his people.”

Every person, leader and organization need to have core values. Core values are the guiding principles which decide what you do and don’t do. These core values define who you are so that others know how you conduct yourself and how you conduct business. A person, leader or organization without core values will fall to every whim of people and to every passion that a situation dictates. Without core values, you are bound to destroy yourself, those you lead, and the organization you run.

David seemed to understand the importance of having core values. The only time he got himself into trouble was when he left his core values. The verse above shows us David’s core values, and these values should be the same values every leader should embrace. Let me show you the four core values that seemed to guide David’s reign.

First, performance is a must. The verse above says, “David executed…” This word simply means that David accomplished or carried out the plans he developed. Every leader must be a person of action if they are going to lead people to accomplish great things. A leader who is stagnant is a leader who leads people into apathy and failure. The leader must be a person who is able to dream big, develop plans to execute those dreams, and have the initiative to carry out those plans. Execution will define the leader’s degree of success.

Second, discernment is imperative. The verse above says, “David executed judgment…” “Judgment” is the ability to discern direction and the right and wrong to make the proper decisions. A leader with poor discernment is bound to lead people into sin. A leader needs the discernment to determine which is the right decision, but every leader must also have the discernment to see a direction. One of the greatest weaknesses of leaders today is their inability to see where a movement is going, or where a person is headed. If you are going to be a good leader, you are going to have to develop the ability to discern.

Third, decisions must be made. When David executed judgment, he was not only able to discern what to do, but he also had the fortitude to make the tough and right decisions. Procrastination will kill a leader. Just because something is a tough decision doesn’t mean you should put it off till later. A good leader is not afraid to tackle the tough projects, and they are not afraid to make hard decisions. The earmark of great leaders is that they are able to make the decisions that others cannot make. Many leaders make things worse by their inability to make a decision. Let me warn you that making the tough decision now will keep you from having to make a decision later on how to put everything back together.

Fourth, impartiality must be the law of the leader. David was just with “all his people.” The quality of your leadership will be determined by how you treat everyone. If you are impartial to family, you will create an unhealthy attitude in followers. The greatest leaders are those who look at what the rules dictate and expect everyone, including themselves and their family, to abide by those rules.

Leader, if you make these four values your core values, you will take much stress away from leading. If you love those whom you lead, you will embrace these core values as yours.

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