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Seven Ways To Develop Your Authentic Leadership Style

Source | | Michelle Braden

What happens when you get to where you thought you wanted to be, only to realize it is not the right place? Or do you ever find yourself compromising your values or passions to succeed in a new, more senior position? When that happens, you are not leaning into your authentic self, which can be detrimental to your success.

The book True North: Discover Your Authentic Leadership by Bill George summarizes what I had been personally striving for as a leader. We have tried for many years to develop the perfect model for leadership, but the truth is, leaders come in all shapes and sizes. That is because we are all different and bring our own set of experiences, personalities and passions into our leadership. Embracing our unique personalities and experiences as a leader is authentic leadership.

A leader can develop their authentic leadership by focusing on seven areas:  

Become More Self-Aware

Being self-aware is not as easy as it may appear. Self-awareness is birthed out of one’s own life story and how their story affects their leadership. Often, leaders do not tap into this goldmine of discovery. They may not go through this process because of not knowing how, not understanding the value of their life story, feeling it is too painful or being unwilling to invest the time.

But this journey is worth the investment. A survey of the Stanford Graduate School of Business Advisory Council members recommended self-awareness as the most important capability for leaders to develop. When we are more self-aware, it is not only for our benefit, but it benefits our organizations as well.

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