Over the last month I’ve been asked to volunteer what I believe the 2 or 3 most critical leadership attributes are from my experience. It didn’t take me long to say:
What exactly do you mean when you say courage they asked me?
- Have the conversations you really need to have
- Make the right decisions at the right time and with the right intent
- Ignite conflict rather than waiting for it to erupt
- Resolve the conflict constructively
- Tame the advice monster and choose to facilitate others’ thinking to find their own solution
- Talk about the planned change without hiding behind the “veil” of confidentiality
- Hold the space for tough and vulnerable conversations
- Give trust to others and when they share with you be sure to “keep it in the vault”
I went on to explain we need a huge dose of human kindness. Leaders who believe in their people and treat them with human kindness:
- Show compassion
- Interact with empathy
- Think the best of others
- Demonstrate gratitude
- Practice joy and bring a sense of happiness
- Show vulnerability by engaging in conversations where they don’t know the outcome
- Listen with the intent to deeply understand
People want to be lead by someone who they can trust to BE authentic no matter the circumstance they face. How would you describe authenticity I was asked?
Having the confidence and courage to behave congruently – aligning what you say and what you believe with your actions – no excuses, no justification and definitely no blame. It’s really that simple.
As I reflected upon my response it became so clear to me – the one world leader who has displayed all of these just recently – the wonderful Jacinda Ardern! She has demonstrated each of these attributes at a time when her people really needed them – what a fabulous leader and wouldn’t our world be different if we had more leaders like her.