The Five Practices of Authentic Leaders: Part 5 of 5

What does authenticity have to do with leadership? If your role involves influencing others or bringing out the best in people, your own authenticity can have a major impact on what you are likely to produce. Authenticity is about credibility and trust. When you are fully in touch with who you are, you are able to bring the full range of your capacity to a situation:  you are more powerful and engaging, more present. People trust you when you are genuine and authentic, not a replica of someone else. 

You can become more authentic through making five practices habit. Each practice will be explored in separate writings.  Delved into so far:  1. Know Who You Are, 2. Reframe Your Life Experiences, 3. Live Your Values, 4. Prioritize Balance.

5. Serve Others

 In line with their own values and sense of self, authentic leaders seek to be of service to others.  In a society of “what’s in it for me?”, authentic leaders recognize that true success is not about their own promotion or about getting subordinates to follow them.  It’s about getting out of themselves so that the collective “we” can rise up together. 

 Before rolling out a new strategic IT plan, LaVerne Council, Corporate Vice President and CIO of Johnson & Johnson, made a point of asking her employees what they needed:  what they were hearing in the organization, what they were learning and how their department could be improved.  Her initiatives created a different kind of connection with people and made the conversations richer.  They also allowed her to not only to devise a strategy absolutely relevant to the needs of J&J, but to also achieve early buy in on the changes to take place. 

 Authentic leaders reap special rewards. Leading authentically brings a deep inner satisfaction that you have empowered others and have thus made the world a better place. This is the challenge and the fulfillment of authentic leadership.

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