When it comes to good leadership, substance always wins over style. For many years now, it seems to have been the opposite. Bold and brash people – usually men – were the ones found in most leadership positions.
These “A” type personalities are excessively ambitious, very competitive – sometimes aggressively so – and exhibit impatience and and a need for control. The need for control also applies to their image, which is curated in a controlled manner.
This type of person is not approachable, nor are they accessible. This means that employees will fear them. A person who is afraid will be unhappy and anxious and, therefore, will not perform well. This attitude will surely pass on to the customer, who will go elsewhere for their needs.
Bill George, a senior fellow at Harvard Business School,writes that authentic leaders are thoughtful people. They think carefully before they speak and are acutely aware of their surroundings and situation. This means that they take great care in incorporating people’s feelings when making decisions.
“Authentic leaders monitor their words and behaviors carefully to be attuned to their audiences and to enroll their colleagues and teammates. They do so because they are sensitive to the impact their words and actions have on others, not because they are “messaging” the right talking points.”
Becoming an authentic person does not happen automatically. As with most things, it takes time, energy and most of all patience. In the process, one is bound to make mistakes and and sometimes speak before choosing their words wisely, for example.
But this makes them even more authentic because they are being truly honest. When people put a wall around themselves and hide behind it, they are cheating themselves and others. Present your true, authentic self and watch how everyone benefits.
Weaver, Thinker, Doer