What defines an authentic leader?
Many leaders leave their true personalities at home when they arrive at the office, choosing to command their team with as many business clichés as they can fit into their working hours. However, more and more people are realising that true, authentic leadership isn’t merely acting – to truly gain employee trust, respect and loyalty, being yourself is essential.
So what are the ingredients of a truly authentic leader?
Self-aware and genuine
Authentic leaders are individuals who are aware of their strengths, their limitations, and their emotions. They show their real selves to their followers, and do not act one way in private and another in public. They don’t hide their mistakes or weaknesses out of fear of looking weak.
Mission driven and results focused
Authentic leaders are able to put the mission and the goals of the organisation ahead of their own self-interest. They do the job in pursuit of results, not for their own power, money or ego.
Lead with their hearts and minds
Authentic leaders are not afraid to show their emotions, their vulnerability and to connect with their employees. Communicating in a direct manner is critical to successful outcomes, but it’s done with empathy.
Long term view
Authentic leaders realise that to nurture individuals and to nurture a company requires hard work and patience, but the approach pays large dividends over time.