I believe now, more than ever before, the world has a need for authentic and conscious leaders who inspire, engage and influence. Who care about doing well, and doing good. There ARE leaders, who by doing so, are creating a sustainable future for our organisations and communities.
After many years of working with and coaching leaders I recognised in myself a desire to explore more deeply, and share first-hand, the journey and experiences of contemporary authentic leaders across the world.
From this desire emerged the Authentic Leaders Dialogue initiative. This important project show-cases the varied faces of authentic leadership – to inspire and support existing and aspiring leaders to step further and courageously into their own authentic selves.
What I have discovered is that no authentic leader is made the same, and yet authentic leaders share common values. They live into these values in their own unique ways.
Below I share, in the first of several essays, what I am discovering about Contemporary Authentic Leadership.
1 Authentic Leaders are Self-Aware
Whether it is taking time to reflect on purpose or meaning for self, identifying the legacy you want to leave behind or staying open to feedback– authentic leaders are often on an ongoing journey of self-evolution through greater self-awareness. By knowing themselves better, they begin to know and respond to challenges and opportunities better.
2 Authentic Leaders Participate in the Success of Others
Whether it is by consciously taking a step back to guide yet not micromanage their teams, taking huge leaps of faith on talent, or by continuously recreating a sense of purpose for their teams – authentic leaders have a passion for empowering others on their journey to leadership.
3 Authentic Leaders Take Ownership
Whether it is by embracing every experience as if they chose it, or taking an active part in the way they want their careers to grow and even owning up to their mistakes – leaders aren’t waiting around for someone to throw them a life-line. They are self-empowered and self-driven.
Dialoguing with leaders to reveal their unique journeys continues to inspire me. And I have begun to wonder if there is in fact a magic formula for authentic leadership – which if once defined – can be seeded into the landscape of our organisations, our communities and even our countries to nurture a future where conscious authentic leadership begins to flourish organically.
My quest to explore and empower continues. There is so much work to do. I would like to thank the leaders we have featured so far; Philippe Mathijs, Global Vice President IT and Operations at Wirecard; Ugo Bello, Global Sales and KAM Director, Novartis; Anna Dianova, Senior HR Director, PepsiCo; and those we are in conversations with right now, for being a part of this experience!
Who should we dialogue with next?
If our mission inspires you and you know an authentic leader who is a role-model we should speak to, please refer us to them and we would be delighted invite them for a chat!