The essential component of effective leadership is trustworthiness, which can’t be accomplished without authenticity.
There is no universal set of traits that make a good leader. What’s more important is that you find your own authentic way to lead.
To be able to connect with others, you need to be able to connect with yourself first. You need to have a deep sense of who you are and what you stand for.
After all, you can only be yourself. You can try to emulate another person, but you can never be that person.
It’s also important to be ethical and do things that are best for the organization, instead of doing things for your own personal gain. If you have a hidden agenda, or try to fake who you are, sooner or later, people will see through the facade and you will lose their trust. And once trust is lost, it’s very hard to get it back.
A much better alternative is to act with integrity. But it won’t be easy. Your values will be challenged. It’s important to remain authentic when it matters most - during hard times. If you remain strong and stick to your values when times are tough, you will not just gain other people’s trust, but also set an example for them.
Inspiring others to be authentic and ethical is deeply rewarding. It’s a step towards a better world, where people care enough to do the right thing even when no one is looking.