The Better Work Project: Authentic Leadership and Leadership Style

04 November

What is authentic leadership? What is leadership style? And how might we apply both to the work environment? In this podcast we are joined by Lorissa Garcia, leadership coach, mentor and facilitator to talk about radical self-enquiry, empathy and genuine leadership. 


Summary
    

  • Authentic leadership is leading from a place where you are your full self, for others.
  • It's understanding the lens through which you see the world, it's your strengths, your opportunity areas, your values, your beliefs, your motivators and what your triggers are.
  • Adam Grant recently said that authenticity without empathy is selfish.
  • Leaders that exhibit ‘jerk’ like behaviour are probably a leader by title only. That behaviour can be contagious and can cause a lot of conflict in the team and the culture.
  • This type of style isn't fit for purpose in environments where we need to be adaptive and where we're fostering collective intelligence of teams to solve complex problems.
  • There are outliers to this, companies such as Netflix where they are very open about the culture and their particular nuances.
  • Conversations around leadership always leads to a conversation around culture. Leadership will drive the culture and culture drives leadership. The two go hand in hand.
  • Leadership styles can be framed up as a metaphor - as a set of hats that you might wear in your leadership role that enables you to show up for people and to get things done.
  • Leaders need to be able to use a range of different styles. Context is key.
  • In a crisis situation for instance we might adopt a more directive style than we might when there is more time to be participative.
  • Style under pressure may change and that’s something leaders need to be cognisant of.
  • It’s important to understand where your people are and meet them where they are at.
  • Radically self-enquiry is important.
  • There’s a lot of vulnerability to admit that you don't know what's next, or you don't know how to lead through the situation, or you are in feeling in the same emotional state as the people that you are leading.
  • Adam Grant’s research illustrated a bias that being vulnerable or self-deprecating can be seen as a strength for men but a weakness for women.
  • The role of the leader is to guide employees and uncover blind spots for them.
  • If you've got a sick fish, you don't change the fish, you change the water. So we need to understand the environment.
  • Leaders sometimes need to create disequilibrium to interrupt the status quo.
  • Radical candour is important to having critical conversations.
  • Leadership needs to be redefined by each individual leader. They need to find the best way to wear the many hats that they have available to them and to reach out for help when they need it.

 

Reference:

The Fine Line Between Helpful and Harmful Authenticity

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