In today’s conversation on the process of developing your unique authentic leadership style, we begin with a fundamental assertion: every single individual on earth is different.
There is no one else exactly like you on this planet.
You are unique.
That’s a positive. It means you’re special – and if you’re unique and special, then it only goes to say that your authentic leadership style, if you are going to show up in an authentic way, is different than anybody else’s.
At Hallett Leadership, we don’t try to fit anybody into a mold and say, you need to be exactly like this or exactly like that. Our goal is to bring forward what already lives inside of you, so that you can show up authentically – in both work AND life. At the end of the day, your ability to do that is what makes you an authentic leader.
Great. You want to be an authentic leader. How do you go about doing that? Where do you start?
Establish A Vision
You want to know where you’re going, so it’s important to establish a vision. That unique, authentic leader that you are – what does that look like? What is your vision of that? What’s your North Star?
Once you’ve articulated that vision, you begin the journey. Keep in mind that once you are on your way, it is probable that you will never actually arrive at your North Star.
Let’s take as an example the famous psychologist Abraham Maslow – the formulator of the Hierarchy of Needs. Maslow probably never reached the top of his hierarchy, which he called Self-Actualization, where every day he would be the most he could be. Where every minute of every day, he was 100% authentic. However, on his journey toward self-actualization, he achieved tremendous growth.
The key distinction here is that Maslow was constantly looking to improve, and he knew where he was headed. He had a North Star. That’s the purpose of the vision.
So, establish a vision for the nature of the leader that you intend to be, and then you can express that to people and get feedback along the way to see how you’re doing.
Feedback is the most effective, least expensive management tool that we have. Use it. Encourage people to give you feedback. One way to even give feedback to other people, which may help them, is to ask for feedback on yourself first. It actually invites a back and forth. It actually invites a connection that can be really powerful, and it can create trusted relationships where you can have each other’s back and work with each other to grow effectively.
Here is a video we made a little while ago to illustrate just how impactful feedback can be.
Find A Mentor
I suggest that you find a mentor, find a coach, find somebody who is willing to give you feedback. However, you get that, get as much feedback as you can. The best athletes in the world have coaches who provide a regular stream of feedback enabling them to improve their performances. As a leader, you can do that too. Get a coach. Find a senior member of your organization that you have good rapport with. Whatever it takes to begin getting feedback, so you can improve your performance over time.
That’s it for today. Don’t forget to join our newsletter as we explore the process of developing tomorrow’s leaders today.