Being Your Authentic Self

Have you ever been told you need to change to be a better leader? When I first moved into a management role I was sent to an assertiveness class. My supervisor at the time thought I was “too nice” to be an effective leader. I would not be respected as an authoritarian. But I soon learned that being myself was and still is the best way to lead a team.

This idea is explored in the Harvard Business Review article “Discovering Your Authentic Leadership” by Bill George, Peter Sims, Andrew N. McLean, and Diana Mayer.  In this post, I want to share the main ideas of the piece with you.

Discovering your authentic self is a process that requires a lot of work. I found this article helpful because it outlines 5 practical steps a person can take to begin to uncover their true self:

  • Step one is to write down your history. How has your story shaped your life?
    Step two figure out what values and principles are important to you. Write them down so you can refer back to them. What holds meaning for you?
    Step three understand what motivates you to be successful. What gets your blood flowing?
    Step four form a support system. Find a mentor. I like to think of this as my personal board of directors, who offers support and is not afraid to give me honest feedback. Who would you put on your board?
    Step five work life balance, which means being the same person at work, home, and in your community. Do you have a “work” you and a “home” you? Why?

As I said above, getting to know your authentic self is work, but it will have great rewards. I love the quote in the article “People trust you when you are genuine and authentic, not a replica of someone else.”

Professional Coaching is a way of finding your authentic self. If you are ready to invest in yourself, I am ready to take the journey with you! Optimize YOUR Potential for a successful career. Contact me for a free 15 minute consult at christie@optimizeyourpotential.biz.

Here is the link to the full article if you want to read the rest – https://hbr.org/2007/02/discovering-your-authentic-leadership.