Grounded & Authentic Leadership
To be a leader in your profession requires coming from your center, your truth. In addition, you need to be able to clearly articulate what is important and why. You can no longer “walk the talk.” This world needs you to “talk what you are walking” so people can see the path and the road ahead.
“If knowing yourself and being yourself were as easy to do as to talk about, there wouldn’t be nearly so many people walking around in borrowed postures, spouting secondhand ideas, trying desperately to fit in rather than to stand out.”
― Warren G. Bennis
Here are seven practices to keep you grounded and authentic as a leader:
1. Manage Expectations – understand in every situation what others expect of you. Ask questions. Define the best way you can participate in the situation. Reflect whether that is something you can meet or not and speak to it.
2. Define Purpose – know your purpose in any situation. Look where it works for you and where it does not and then decide how you want to address it.
3. Understand – ask open ended questions to understand situations and others. Become a student of human nature and enter into conversations and situations as a learner.
4. Challenge Your Assumptions – expand and go a little bit outside your comfort zone each day.
5. Read – read literature that opens your mind, your world view, and keeps you thinking.
6. Learn – continue to learn new skills, especially if you have no given talent in the discipline. You will develop yourself in amazing ways.
7. Be Kind – do random acts of kindness for others that cannot be traced back to you.
Leadership is a practice that requires you to constantly and passionately grow yourself in any setting. Often you will be put in situations that you did not create nor can control, and yet it will be up to you to respond in such a way that provides positive growth for you and others. Your ability to practice the above will allow you to adapt and change in most situations.