There are all types and styles of Leadership from Autocratic to Charismatic to Situational or Visionary and a host more. There are no rules against having a combination of styles and often times this is, in fact, the case. In particular, I am partial to an Authentic style of Leadership. An Authentic Leader does what they say and promise to do always and consistently. You are not and cannot be an Authentic Leader if you do things differently when it is convenient even if is “just this one time”. You can’t be an Authentic Leader yet act like one only part of the time. The profile of an Authentic Leader looks something like this:
Stands up for what they believe
Makes things happen and moves forward
Is fearless; faces everything and avoids nothing
Makes brilliant mistakes
Never sugar coats their point of view
If you’re not the real thing, it will not take people very long to find you out. It only takes a moment, a small action or misstep to cross the line from “Authentically bona fide” to “Authentic Fraud and then it’s “game over”. If you want to be an Authentic Leader or Business Owner, you should plan to be authentic all day, every day.
This is very hard work, but think about it, you will certainly stand out in the crowd in a very good way. Authenticity is a tremendous super structure that can house other worthy attributes like Honesty and Integrity rather easily, all of which are incredibly powerful traits. If you are just starting out as a Business Owner or elevating to a Leadership role in a corporate setting, you have the opportunity to be authentic without much baggage to overcome, but still it will be hard work to become and remain authentic. For those of you who have taken other leadership paths, it is never too late to change direction and there is no greater reward than to be able to look into the mirror and to be proud of the reflection you see and know that others will see it too. The lasting value you will have in business isn’t too bad either.