Genuine, Worthy of Trust, Reliance, or Belief

This is how Bill George, author of Authentic Leadership, defines authentic leadership, and we agree. What does authentic leadership mean to you?

George states that authentic leaders:

Understand their Purpose (passion).

  • If you lack purpose and direction in your leadership, why would anyone want to follow you?

Practice solid values (behaviors).

  • The values of a leader are shaped by their personal beliefs, developed through study, introspection, and consultation with others, and require 100% integrity.

Lead with heart (compassion).

  • Engage the minds and hearts of your employees through a sense of purpose. Greatness (and results!) are achieved when multiple minds contribute to the task.

Establish connected relationships (networks).

  • A detached leadership style often used when providing strategy or delegating will not lead to success as much as developing close and enduring relationships will.

Demonstrate self-discipline (consistency).

  • Converting values into consistent actions lends itself to building respect. We must admit our mistakes and not let ego or emotion impact our actions.

Authentic Leadership Self-Assessment

Ask yourself the following questions and answer honestly.

  1. What’s the purpose of my leadership? Do I really want to devote my talents to the profession I’m currently in?
  2. Am I in a position where I can make a real difference and feel valued?
  3. Do I ever check my beliefs at the office door? When?
  4. How can I stay true to my values when there are so many pressures to compromise?
  5. Can I develop close relationships with my subordinates and still achieve my objectives?

To be truly authentic, validate what’s important to you and align your personal and professional lives accordingly.

We also suggest having clearly defined vision, mission and goals, and ensure all your actions support your ability to achieve them.

Are you authentic?