What Will this Article do for Me?
- Learn the components of a framework for leadership
- Uncover the qualities of exceptional leadership
- Act on a vision for developing and attracting authentic leaders
- Compare your leadership attributes to those attributes of leadership success
Look Inward and Lead Outward
Knowing oneself is a primary quality to becoming a genuine leader. The term authentic leader has become a newer style of leadership. Authenticity refers to being aware of the attributes of leadership that are positive as well as those traits that need to be fine-tuned or stopped. Every leader has barriers to leadership that they are not aware of and as a result refrain from honestly taking a look within.
When a leader is willing to look inwardly, they become stronger at leading outwardly.
By becoming more self-aware and understanding how to regulate their reactive habits and impulses they discover what motivates them to achieve. This self-discovery enhances a leader’s vision and results in building stronger leaders throughout the organization.
Start Developing Your Leadership Vision:
- Reinvent yourself
- Live your core values
- Discover your blind spots
- Act upon your leadership vision
Do You Have a Confidant?
Becoming and “being” an authentic leader is hard. If it were easy there would not be a leadership deficit and more authentic leaders would exist. Dr. Whitaker points out the importance of utilizing a thinking partner to help leaders uncover their blind spots and suggest actions for developing their leadership skills. A confidant is an individual that disagrees with a leader’s thinking or tells the leader what he or she may not want to hear.
Do you Inspire Others to Trust You?
Authentic leaders engage their followers to believe in them and their purpose. This requires a leader to inspire a common vision, establish confidence, and appreciate working with others. Specifically, authentic leaders are friendly, accept responsibility for their actions, and is mutually supportive of everyone – not, just the people the leader likes.
Dr. Whitaker’s research proposes that a leader can have a great strategy or plan of action, but without trust from their followers neither will be fulfilled. The level of trust doesn’t ensure a plan will work, but without it, the plan is destined to fail. This secret ingredient to leadership success is so essential, but yet even today leaders still struggle to build trust with their managers, peers, and team members.