14 Apr What is Authentic Leadership Coaching?
In leadership, the agreed goal for people to learn what the leader knows.
In authentic leadership, the goal is for everyone to learn what nobody knows.
The question “who is…?” can often be more powerful than “what is?” So when we speak about authentic leadership, answering the question “who is an authentic leader” might reveal something more empowering than “what is leadership” or even “what is authentic leadership?
Voice and vocation both find their root in the Latin “to call”.
Top 5 qualities of authentic leaders:
• Authentic leader is someone for whom leading is not something to do, but a calling, a way to be.
• Authentic leader is someone who is in touch with, and unafraid of their own voice.
• Authentic leaders need to say the least and can listen deeply.
• An authentic leader is not obvious. We learn to appreciate them over time. We learn to trust them through consistency and conversations.
• Authentic leaders teach us that real voice is not only about the words.
As we get to know them we become aware as much about what they don’t do as what they do:
• Authentic leaders don’t confuse their job title or role with who they are as people.
• Authentic leaders don’t seek credit for success, or recognition for accomplishment.
• Authentic leaders do not blame. They don’t confuse criticism with hostility or correction with animosity.
• Authentic leaders don’t mistake truth with authority or power.
• Authentic leaders don’t confuse guilt with motivation, knowledge with wisdom, busy-ness with action, or reasons with results.
We gradually learn to see that it is not what they do as much as who they are that makes the biggest difference. They listen in a way that goes way beyond their own agenda, to what is not said as well as what is said. They respond from compassion and caring rather than approval or fear. They are able to laugh at themselves. They can be with another’s pain, but never colonise their journey. They know the difference between saying yes and no, and have the courage to do it and take a stand.
Leading is their life!
Authentic Leadership – A Practice for Life
Authentic leadership can be understood as an integrated and cohesive approach to leadership. It is an approach that takes a decidedly personal perspective to leadership.
When we attempt to eliminate the personal we are at risk of losing the source of our experience of what it takes to lead and be a leader.
We lose sight of ourselves. It is often said that there is no agreed definition of leadership – that the scholars don’t know what it is they are teaching, the researchers don’t know what it is they are researching and the practitioners don’t know what it is they are practicing.
Authentic leadership is a framework for finding our way back to the art and soul of leadership and which leaves people with the close-up, lived experience of being a leader in their lives, not knowing more about the theories of leadership.
The Art of Leadership
Authentic leadership sees the practice of leadership more as a creative or artistic act than a technical, routine or habitual process.
It views the source of leadership as being in our creative imagination.
Creative imagination is the fundamental disposition of the authentic leaders It is the capacity to envision possibilities beyond those immediately visible. It is the ability to open, boldly, to a wider range of options, alternatives and opportunities than those that are apparent and recognisable.
Creative imagination implies a refusal to be limited by the prevailing views and opinions of perceived reality or what prescriptive solutions determine is or is not possible, and a readiness to entertain the unpredictable and the unanticipated. In other words leadership that is rooted in our creative imagination is leadership that can bring about (invent) new possibilities that are not conceivable in any of the current considerations.
Authentic leadership is not confined by what is known, familiar or predictable – it is creative action in practice.
Authentic Leadership Coaching
Authentic leadership coaching means listening to people from possibility rather than the past. It is listening to people’s story knowing that they made them up and they can make up more empowering stories that transform their experience of life.
Authentic leadership coaching is seeing your coachee as who they can be rather than who they think they are. It is being a stand for the fullest manifestation of a person’s potential.
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