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Authenticity – Be true to yourself

Authenticity — what is it, who has it, and how do you get it? Most people associate authenticity with being true to oneself — or “walking the talk.” But there’s a problem with that association; it focuses on how you feel about yourself. Authenticity is actually a relational behaviour, not a self-centred one. Meaning that to be truly authentic, you must not only be comfortable with yourself, but must also comfortably connect with others.
Point of View: Having a point of view is critical to being authentic. Being open and willing to engage in exchanges on that point of view accentuates your leadership and demonstrates both strength and flexibility. By articulating your point of view on firm issues, challenges, and disagreements, you will become more comfortable speaking your mind.
Positioning: While taking a position is important, over-positioning yourself is detrimental. Know the difference between navigating the political waters of your organization and actually becoming the politics itself. Get support for your initiatives but be transparent about what you are doing, why you are doing it, and how you are doing it.
Personal History: At the core, you need to connect with your personal history and identify the key events, messages, and people that shaped who you are today. Exploring your personal history will often surface messages that are worth re-examining in order to truly express your authentic self.
 “To attract followers, a leader has to be many things to many people. The trick is to pull that off while remaining true to yourself.” While it’s easy to sniff out who’s authentic and who’s not, it’s not so simple to recognize it in ourselves.
For more information on Executive Coaching & Mentoring please contact Liz Hines, Business Manager on 0113 322 9234 or 01423 876371 or email liz.hines@xenonex.co.uk or visit www.xenonex.co.uk.


Extract from article by Amy Jen Su and Muriel Maignan Wilkins