Leadership, Values and Vision

How do you define leadership?  This is a great question. I do like this definition: Leaderships is dependent on the actions one takes rather than the position one holds. I recently completed a leadership program at Walt Disney World called Disney’s Approach To Leadership Excellence (I highly recommend the course), this is where I read this definition. Disney’s has developed  great leaders from Walt (visionary, his brother was the money person) himself, Michael Eisner to their current CEO Robert Iger. What great leaders have is vision? How do you define vision and values in your organization?  Does your organization have Mission Statement? Do you employees know the organization’s mission and  vision?  Is your vision the same as the organization’s or are they misaligned? The above questions are a good place to start and leaders should be asking to themselves as well as their other leaders and employees within their organization.

Vision may be the 30,000-foot view, it may be ambitious and it is futuristic. The vision also must be realistic and at the same time the vision cannot change the values. Remember that values are important. lasting beliefs or ideals that are shared (Disney’s Approach to Leadership).  I wondered if my vision and values for my organization were the same as my officers? Do my personal vision and values match and are consistent with the organization I lead (a future blog)?

My vision since becoming of Chief of Cary Area EMS was to be the best EMS Service, provide the best patient care, have the best staff and to grow. My core values are: Do the right thing always (in life and for our patients), Honesty (my staff knows that you never lie to the Chief), Trust, and Caring.  Yes the vision changes and our vision has changed slightly. My initial vision is still in place today. I asked my officers to write down their core values and vision. For the most part we are aligned, which made me happy.  In our discussion, my officers communicated in different ways with me that they share doing the right thing, honesty and caring and that they are important at Cary Area EMS. We are working on the misalignment, which I see is communication issue. Sometimes the communication may not be as clear.

As for vision we are on the same page. We have assembled the greatest staff, we have grown and we take care of patients. We continue to look at the future and we are not afraid to change the vision as long as the values stay the same.


Steven Cohen is the Chief of Cary Area EMS, the host of the podcast Medic2Medic and is been in EMS for 35 years.

Contact Information: Cary Area EMS:chief@caryems.com. Medic2Medic Podcast: medic2medicpodcast@gmail.com.

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