We’ve often seen the word “authentic” being used to describe leaders, influencers, and personalities, especially in the time of digital media. But what does being authentic actually mean, besides being a trendy hashtag? What does authentic leadership look like and can we be more authentic leaders?
A leadership coach and consultant with senior operations experience in several Fortune 500 companies, David Brown Jr. has uncovered revolutionary ideas on authenticity in leadership while continuing his doctoral studies at Temple University. His first book, Letters to Lucia: 8 Principles for Navigating Adversity is a product of a cathartic transformation, the philosophies of which have helped shape Brown’s ideas on authentic leadership.
On this episode of The Corelink Solution, David Brown Jr. shares his findings on authentic leadership, after years of study and personal discovery. We discuss how authenticity is not only about “being true to one’s self,” but is a product of many factors, including environment, experience, and synergy between the intrinsic and extrinsic.
Leadership, Inside And Out
David believes that authenticity occurs when there is agreement between our intrinsic processes and extrinsic demonstrations. According to David, intrinsic processes are the thoughts, feelings, emotions, beliefs, values, and internal concepts that we carry with us in our everyday lives. Extrinsic demonstrations are the outward set of actions and behaviors that follow these internalizations.
“The more aligned those two are, the higher the person’s level of authenticity. The more misaligned they are or less congruent, the less authentic they are… Think about someone who believes something truly, and they go out and pound their chest in that belief, then they’re being authentic. But put yourself in the corporate world — how often do we have a thought, as a leader, and we choose not to act on it? In that environment, we are revealing less of who we are. However, it doesn’t mean that that’s not truly a…