Authentic Leadership

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This text from HBR outlines the high importance of authenticity while leading. It made me aware of the importance of a leader’s personality, which is shaped by his/her experiences and life story. This text shows that leading is a matter of individual procedures, determined by many factors such as the leader’s values, childhood experiences, career paths, highs and lows, successes and failures and not least by a leader’s family and environment. I think the sentence: ‘Leadership principles are values translated into actions.’, is very interesting and shows how important a leader’s values are. The Text of the authentic leadership draws very much on the need for an authentic leader, who actually takes position for his own values and his true believes. I do very much agree with this assumption due to personal experiences. I came across this phenomenon while teaching kids. Children e.g. are able to distinguish between an authentic fury and a played one. As a consequent they would not respond to a played fury while they actually change their inappropriate behaviour when I am truly angry with someone/ something. What further comes into my mind in respect to authenticity is every manner of art expression. If art is produced due to an inner feeling, which needed to be expressed, it has often more responsiveness than an image e.g. which was just made for commercial intentions, this applies also for music. If we transfer that to leading we come to the same conclusion as the text; the today’s leaders need to be authentic in order to be creditable and develop long-term relationships with their followers. A further aspect of authenticity is the showing of one-self’s true personality. I think a leadership style that includes wearing ‘masks’ is not successful for the long-term. The aspect of honesty and the allowance of being human are very important parts while leading and also managing people. Especially experiences in life shape personality and lead people in other directions...
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