Discovering myself as an authentic leader, and in fact taking necessary steps to ensure that I live up to my dream as a true leader has not been easy. To understand the meaning of an authentic leader, it is important to understand the term leader. According to my understanding, a term leader simply means someone who shows or leads the path, that is, someone who is strong enough to motivate and guide others to do the right things. Leaders easily get others engaged in a project, which they believe in.
An authentic leader is more than just an engagement in leadership. Unlike other kinds of leaders, an authentic leader has to believe in what he or she is currently or planning to do. An authentic leader has to believe in what he or she is saying and take steps to fight for it. In part, true leadership is concerned with being honest to oneself, own ideas and beliefs.
An authentic leader is more than just being honest to oneself. It involves developing an envious personality that can be considered as a role model. True leadership also involves a number of attributes, such as observing, listening, and anticipating your colleagues’ needs and taking necessary steps to help them. Ability to combine all essential attributes leads to charisma.
Ideally, human beings are not born with leadership qualities. One needs to work hard to discover and develop special qualities. Certain leadership tactics, when developed fully, will qualify one to become an authentic leader. Thus, authentic leadership can be said to encompass the natural qualities to lead, and other special qualities that one will have to acquire, cultivate, and develop. The ability to believe and actually have passion to do something comes from charisma. That is the quality that true leaders of the world are seen to possess. Unlike other forms of leadership, true leaders have a presence, that is, a certain gesture that is influential whenever they talk.
Throughout the course, I managed to come up with my own leadership style and guiding principles to ensure that I continue to grow into a true leader. Some of the principles that I considered most vital in my journey towards authentic leadership is determination, resilience, honesty, faith, respect, and reliability.
Determination will help me to stand for what I belief without wavering, while resilience will help me to stand firm in what I belief in, even during instances where no one seems to support my views. Honesty is another important principle that will help in improving my level of credibility and loyalty. Faith is also important to me, having been raised from a very religious background. Respect is also important because people will not be willing to respect someone who is disrespectful. Lastly, I must present myself as a reliable leader who will always deliver on promises.
During the course, I got the chance to grow by participating in various exercises that brought various kinds of lessons and new discoveries. With the help of the various exercises, I was able to discover myself with respect to personal strengths and weaknesses, and from that information, I was able to formulate my path towards a better personality.
For instance, the exercise on scoping compass helped me a great deal to discover some facts about my self. When I was undertaking the exercise as an interviewer, I discovered that I tend to go into details than actually scoping out. The discovery was quite surprising for me because I have always been thinking that I am not curious and more likely to respect some boundaries. That was the reason why I would think that asking general questions would help to identify the bid issues easily.
Apart from improving my self-discovery, I was also able to learn various kinds of things, which helped me in developing personal principles. The lessons were of great importance because I was able to know almost all my weaknesses and strengths. I was then able to plan on how I would be able to act without being constraint by my weaknesses. I also made plans for addressing key weaknesses so that I could be able to develop fully into a true leader.
I also have to learn from other persons and therefore, I will be able to understand behaviour of many individuals and the reasons that individuals behave in certain ways. Ability to understand other people is one of the essential qualities in leadership that will enable one to act in a manner that will satisfy everyone. It will also help in reconciling any worrying parties because it would be easier to pinpoint the main or root cause of a problem if one understands behaviour of the parties concerned.
The most important step, which brought a lot of meaning to my developmental efforts, was discovery of my strengths. For so many years, there were some activities, which I could not do because I thought I would not succeed. However, after discovering my strengths, I realized that I could participate in many activities successfully. Discovery of my strengths helped me to belief in myself and avoid being afraid of taking steps to pursue my dreams.
When we were performing solutions marketing in our class, I got a chance to participate as a leader. During the exercise, I was able to demonstrate and practice my leadership skills.
During the exercise, I was able to initiate new changes to the group by encouraging members to participate openly and actively. I successfully created an environment where members could openly share ideas and comments without discrimination. Some of my teammates appeared judgemental; however, I was able to resolve all issues. Besides, I helped the group members to be focused to the main goals of our undertaking. The final effect of my leadership was that everyone appeared energized and motivated, and because of that, we were able to surpass our pre-set goals.
Generally, I was able to impact the team positively because I encouraged equal participation and sharing of ideas. The unity, which we had enhanced our level of motivation, and therefore, we were able to address the task at hand in a synergistic manner resulting in achievement of our goals.
The main goal of my leadership effort was to ensure that all group members were focused on achieving the goals of our mission. That is why I encouraged participation of everyone so that all our strengths could be pooled to attain mutually satisfactory results.
During the exercise, I learnt that I am an impactful leader who can have presence, although the quality is yet to be fully developed. I also learnt that I was respectful and open towards other people’s ideas and opinions. At first, I was rather impatient; however, I realized the weakness and took corrective action as soon as possible.
Time management was one of the areas that I did exemplary well. All activities were completed within the required timeframes. In addition, all tasks were distributed efficiently to all participants. I was also able to unite my group members and encourage full participation.
Despite the fact that every group member participated, there were challenges trying to get every member to be involved in equal discussions. Time constraints were one of the reasons for the challenge. The other reason for emergence of the problem was that some people appeared more dominant than others did.
The exercise is closely related to what we have learnt in class because as I realized, leadership entails various developmental stages that must be passed before one becomes a true leader. The theoretical principles of leadership are applicable in real life context, and that, they can be helpful when one is a practising leader.
I intend to continue developing my communication skills. In the past, I used to have serious problems with my communication skills. Over the past few months, I realized that I have taken great strides. I would like to continue developing the skills to full height by participating actively in interaction with various kinds of people. I would also wish to identify individuals who have perfected their communication skills and try to learn from them. In addition, I would also like to ensure that my levels of motivation and determination are maintained. To be able to maintain he levels, I will constantly remind myself of my personal goals, principles and values, and encourage myself to keep going.
Sheppard, Charlie. Save your drama for your mama. San Francisco: aChoice Pub., 2013. Print.