Overview: Noble intent is the common denominator of all highly successful leaders. Such noble-purpose leaders do not allow transactional, financially-focused attitudes to limit their potentials. They understand by observing and assuming noble intentions, they reiterate the dignity of their organizations while building trust and long-term resilience.
The greatest leaders are noble-purpose leaders who assume noble intent in others. Far from turning its adopters into gullible, naïve suckers, noble intent is key to leadership success on a massive scale. Leadership coaching recognizes the power of noble intent. Many of the core principles of intelligent leadership use it as their foundation.
From the narrow perspective of intent, the leadership scene is home to two types of leaders.
Transactional leaders look to protect their financial interests. The force that powers their decisions and actions is one with a short horizon. Objectives that don’t entail immediate financial gain are beyond this horizon, limiting the options and potential of these leaders.
Noble-purpose leaders have the ability to look past the financial aspects of activities and formulate purposes that far transcend material gains. People can sense noble intention in others. Noble intention is a currency that people universally appreciate and seek. Noble-purpose leadership can’t fail because it doesn’t aim at the superficial financial symptoms of problems. Instead, it tackles the roots of issues, finding effective solutions that alleviate the symptoms.
As a result of their noble-intent-based approach, noble-purpose leaders are also financially successful.
Noble Intent Is a Value System
To act with noble intent is to act with the intention of doing good and not causing harm.
Leadership coaching instills in leaders a value system based on noble intent they can use to build noble-intent-based cultures in their organizations.
The value system of noble intent is based on mutual benefit and long-term legacies. A person acting with noble intent always has an impact that transcends him or her.
Noble intent inspires. Noble intent can change the world one interaction at a time. And the principles of noble intent can help everyone achieve more.
Humans cooperate; that is our strength. Sometimes, we also swindle and take advantage of each other. Nothing can change the fact, however, that noble intent fuels cooperation, allowing us to excel as individuals and as members of an organization.
The Power of Assuming Noble Intent
On one hand, the principles of noble intent require us to act in good faith with the goal of doing good and helping others.
On the other, they require us to assume noble intent in others. This is where things get tricky. Our instincts may contradict our intentions. To assume noble intent in others, leaders must overrule their instincts. It’s a worthy exercise, however, and here’s why.
The best way to get people to approach their work with noble intent is to assume they have noble intentions.
The assumption is relatively safe. Most people want to do a good job, be duly rewarded for their efforts, and advance their careers. Focusing on the outcomes of their work instead of their performances help people to act with noble intent.
An outcome-focused approach is what we like to call a customer-focused approach these days.
Balancing Noble Intent with the Realities of Life
Assuming noble intent is often at odds with the realities we observe. Giving up noble intent is never the solution, however.
Some people don’t have the skills required to do their work, and some may be unwilling to work. There may be passive-aggressiveness and other behaviors that negatively impact the relationships that comprise a company culture.
Executive coaching knows and understands these variables. Executive coaching professionals also understand that only strong, decisive leadership can deal with some of the problems that are beyond repair.
Noble intent will always be a profitable long-term investment on the part of leaders, however. Noble-purpose leadership can build organizational trust and resilience. It’s the best bet for every organization to survive major crises and find opportunities in adversity.