00:08 Hi, I'm Denise Simpson, master life and leadership coach who helps women step into their authentic and feminine power. So they can lead like visionaries influence with grace and create a legacy of contribution and service. You'll hear about real leadership clients with real problems, navigating their success in life, business, and career. If you're ready to become a masterful leader, then this podcast was made for you.
00:47 Hey there, welcome back. My friend. Happy you are here. I can't wait to get into this conversation about authentic leadership. Authenticity is confusing for a lot of people. You know, some women say to me, I just, I don't know who I am anymore. I've taken on so many different leadership principles, different leadership behaviors. You know, I don't even know who I am and how I am supposed to lead. And this is true for a lot of us. Who've been leaders for a long time. We have unconsciously taken on behaviors, patterns, beliefs from very interesting leaders. I remember my first leader at bath and body works. Um, yeah, she was interesting and she scared the hell out of me. And I took on a lot of those mannerisms and, and tactics and I made them my own. And then I started to be a very scary leader with my, my retail employees.
01:54 I remembered not knowing who I was. It was unnatural for me to be mean to my employees. It was unnatural to be direct and forward and downright rude to my employees. It was so unnatural for me, but this is all I knew. She was, you know, maybe my second leader at that point in time. And, and she was pretty dominant in her energy was very forceful. And I took on a lot of her behaviors at the unconscious level. And it wasn't until I remember getting any evaluation from my leader at that time. And she said to me, you remind me of so-and-so. You're just like her. And I thought, oh no, she's horrible. I don't want to be anything like her. And I became very conscious of my own behaviors and it all stemmed from what I learned at the unconscious level. And so authenticity is confusing to some people it's not until we get a negative evaluation.
02:56 It's not until we get a negative, you know, feedback from our employee or employer that makes us realize, wow, that's not who I am. I don't even know what you're talking about. Well, it's because we've taken on a lot of, again, behaviors and beliefs from our leaders at the unconscious level. And so authentic leadership is, is one of those theories that is really hopeful. You know, it was written by bill George back in 2003. And it's a great theory. You know, he has these five tenets that I like to share with my clients. And it's a fantastic theory. It's been researched millions of times. It has a great body of empirical research and, and still use today. And, you know, especially during the last, you know, four or five, six years, it's been on the forefront of a lot of, you know, political leadership parties, as well as a lot of organizations and corporations wanting to lead with more integrity and conscientious behaviors, they're geared towards, you know, the people and finding balance and equity among diverse groups of workforce.
04:20 And so I think authentic leadership is one of the according to research, one of the biggest predictors of an employee's job satisfaction, organizational commitment level and workplace happiness. So the more a leader is authentic. The higher the ratings are, the correlation is positive in that the employee's job satisfaction is higher. Their commitment to the organization is stronger and their workplace happiness is high. That's important to understand that authentic leadership has a direct correlation or relationship to these variables of, of an employee. And if you're a leader and you're listening to this, then it's really important that we start looking at you and how you lead at your most authentic, highest self. And that means that we need to look at what bias, what prejudice, what discriminatory principles that you have been leading from at the unconscious level, so that we can then really unearth who you are at the most authentic level of leadership.
05:37 That's what authentic leadership is now. I don't, I don't think bill George intended to do all that and I'll go through his five tenants and just a little bit. And then some of my ideas on how you can start really looking at being more authentic and how you lead. So whether you're leading a nonprofit, you're leading your constituents, you're leading your employees, you're leading your children, you're leading your clients. So it doesn't matter what context this is in. If you are a leader, you identify as such, then we need to take this theory a step further and I'm going to help you do that. Okay? So let's get started with bill George's five distinct qualities or tenants that you can develop. So number one sense of purpose. So our most authentic leaders are passionate about their work. There's no doubt about it. You listen to them, speak.
06:32 There is passion behind their words, passion behind their work. Their behaviors is a reflection of their passionate words and their principles. They are really driven by this internal purpose and, and it's something that they need to do. It's something that they want others to do. It's something that you know, is, is promising and it's hopeful, and they are full of energy and, and full of again, passion behind a project behind a mission, a vision. You know, when I hire employees, I am always looking for someone who comes with that purpose comes with passion. They're very grounded. They know who they are and their words and their behaviors are in complete congruence. So a sense of purpose is important. So start paying attention to you and how you are coming to the organization on a daily basis, how you are showing up for your children on a daily basis.
07:35 Are you passionate about being a mom? Are you passionate about being a leader or if you are a political leader, are you passionate about your constituents and their particular needs? What is your sense of purpose? And if you're a follower right now, and you're thinking about your current supervisor or your current leader, ask yourself that question, does this leader, this person I report to today, do they have a sense of purpose? And if they don't and start looking for others in the organization that, that resonates with this idea of purpose, who else is the CEO, especially does the CEO of the entire organization have a sense of purpose and, and do they demonstrate it through the words that they speak and their behaviors. So, number two, bill George is, again, we're going through bill George's five distinct qualities or the tenants. And, and again, you can develop this for yourself.
08:36 And I have some ideas on how to do that at the end of this list of five. So number two, is, does this authentic bleeder, or does this person have distinct values? These are values driven by their beliefs and their morals. So values are very personal values are formed at really the unconscious level. It's probably even deeper at the unconscious level than your beliefs are. And values really come from many influences. Like your parents, like your culture, your religion, or your faith, your socioeconomic status, maybe even where you were raised geographically. So, so many influences that then comprise your values system. And so does this leader, do you, as the leader have these values that are driven by your beliefs and morals, and do you stand by these values? Are these values grounded in integrity and do your values align with your behaviors? And so, as a leader, I remembered leading my academic staff with number one, the value of fun.
09:52 I know, right? Academics and fun. I know strange to hear academics is so serious. I know, but I wanted to have fun. I wanted to show up every day with my authentic personality. I wanted to have fun. I didn't want to be moody. I didn't want to be a jerk. I just, you know, and, and, and let me tell you, there were days where I did struggle with that because I was really focused in, on a reality that I wasn't at that point in time fulfilled with. And so I would come in little grumpy and would take it out on some people unconsciously, unintentionally of course, but my value of fun is primary. And I needed to remind myself of that value and how it drives my decisions every day, wanting to have fun with my employees. I wanted them to feel like they were free to be themselves.
10:51 I wanted to have a good time. I didn't want it to be so serious. And that's the actual value that grounds my business today is fun. I want to have a great time with my clients. I want them to feel seen. I want them to feel heard, and I want them to be the most authentic selves. I want them to have fun in their bodies, have fun in their roles. So for me, it's fun for you. It may be something very different, right? So start looking at your values in the context of the role of leadership. Are you leading your constituents with, you know, these particular set of values or are you leading your family with this particular set of values? So every context has a different set of values. I believe so, because the way I show up in my business leading my clients is different.
11:44 When I show up, you know, with my extended family, I, you know, I tend to be very introverted. And so I pull back a little bit and I just observe. And so I'm not necessarily wanting to have fun and, you know, and take out my freak flag. I'm very conscientious around them and that's okay, that's natural for me. And that feels authentic for me. So now I want for you to start looking at your value systems in the different contexts that you live in and be conscious of them. That's the point of this values are at the unconscious level. And again, they're very deeply rooted at the unconscious level. So a lot of us don't even know why we behave the way we behave or make decisions from. And so it's important that we get conscious of these values. So make a list of them.
12:38 And now let's move on to number three. Number three is relationship building, an authentic leader, establishes real connections. They are real and genuine. You know, they may not be super deep level intimate type of relationships. Although they're highly capable of that. Authentic leaders are sincere in the relationships that they are building. They're not doing this to find ways to leverage or manipulate or use people there. They're just naturally wanting genuinely caring and wanting to, to learn about their employees in an effort to make the employee feel just as authentic. And part of that organization as the leader is. So relationship building is number three. So start looking at how you leader, how you are building these relationships. So now let's move on to number four, and I'm going through these very quickly. My friend, if you want the transcript of this recording, they're always on my website.
13:45 So go there and you can read this transcript. So if I'm going too fast for you, I'm so sorry. It's just, there's so much to get through today. So let's get to number four, an authentic leader has goals and they're, self-disciplined in achieving these goals. They have these goals for the department, or have these goals for the family, or have these goals as, you know, as, as, as a community. And they are guided by their goals. And they are really great at really exciting the workforce, exciting the family, getting them on board and helping them move towards achieving that goal together. And they're very disciplined. And so I had a few leaders who would set a goal would set an objective or some type of measurement that we needed to meet as a department. And the second it got tough, they quit and said, oh, nevermind.
14:44 Actually, we're just not going to do that anymore. We're going to turn our attention to this other project. And I remembered going, especially this one leader, I thought, wow, this guy is a little bonkers. Like one day he is so excited. One day he's really, you know, thrilled about this objective. And he's, you know, our biggest cheerleader. He is, you know, getting us excited to move towards this goal. And then he switches directions out of nowhere and it's like, okay, there's stuff going on. And I wonder, what's going on? Could it be him internally? Or could it be pressures from his leader? But I remembered always evaluating people's behaviors. Maybe that's why I'm such a great coach. I'm always evaluating people's words and their behaviors. And, and, and especially when they're not congruent, that's when there's a big red flag. And so start looking at yourself in regards to goal setting.
15:40 And are you disciplined enough to achieve those goals? Because remember people are watching your employees are watching, they're evaluating your behavior. And so do you stay on task? Do you stay on a project until it is fulfilled with your team? Or are you scattered in all over the place? So pay close attention to that leader. Okay. Number five, an authentic leader, according to bill George has a genuine heart. They are compassionate. They are empathetic to the point where they understand their employees challenges. And I say to a point because leaders, although they can be very empathetic, they know that they need to practice compassion. Instead of empathy. I know this is going against everything. Daniel Goldman says in emotional intelligence. And it's a great theory. It's fantastic. Lot of empirical research also with that theory, but, you know, sociology and the social sciences SA says that those of us in leadership, those of us who are serving others, like therapists, client, coaches, consultants, those of us who have patients, those, those of us who have clients, we serve our clients or our patients from a perspective of compassion instead of empathy, then I'm going to do a, uh, a session.
17:08 I'm going to do a podcast on the differences between those two, because it's important that if you are leading that we need to, first of all, understand the difference between empathy and compassion. And, and then also show you the research, why compassion is a better perspective to be able to help your employee or your client best. All right, my friend. So those were the five tenets or the qualities that make up an authentic leader, according to bill George. So check out his website. I think it is authentic leadership.com. There, you'll see some videos, um, like press releases that he's done or, or interviews that he's done on television. And you'll get to read so much more about his body of work, which is really fantastic and is, is really what I ultimately guide my clients through is a series of authentic leadership. And I, however, call it sovereign leadership.
18:05 And it's important that we know who we are first and foremost, before we get to lead others, we don't want to lead from these unconscious behaviors that we learned from really bad leaders. So authentic leadership is really at the core of everything that I do. So now that you learned about those five tenants or the qualities of an authentic leader, I want to share with you just four simple things that you can do to start honing in on your authentic perspective on your authentic leadership qualities. And the first thing I want for you to do is explore your life stories and your personal experiences tap into and reflect on your past your present and your future. So what this looks like is jotting down some ideas on where you got certain principles, certain leadership principles, you know, for me, from, from my perspective of the Mexican American culture, especially my subculture being raised on the Texas Mexican border.
19:19 I had an interesting vantage point. I was able to have one foot in Mexico and one foot in Texas. And I was able to see the differences, the contrasting differences between those that lived in Mexico and those that lived in the us and the freedoms and the advantages and the benefits of being an American citizen. And I was able to, at a very young age, see these very contrasting lifestyles. And I had a lot of friends who had homes in Mexico, lived in Mexico, but would come to school in the us. It was just such an interesting perspective to see all these angles. And I am now able to practice from a very compassionate leadership stance. I can, I can pull back and really step into their shoes if I need to, as an empathetic leader, but then I pull back and then I'm able to be objective as a compassionate leader.
20:25 So that's something that helped me throughout my leadership journey. You know, another thing that I learned, especially from my mother was that her patients came first. She was a nurse, worked for an OB-GYN for a very long time. And her patients would call her first, before they would call the doctor. So my mother would be at labor and delivery before physician would get there. And my mother really took her, her vocation so seriously and loved her patients so deeply. And I learned that from her. I learned that way of, of, of leading with the heart and building these, these authentic, genuine relationships with my clients, my students, my employees, and I learned that from her at such a young age. And so a lot of my leadership principles for, for better or worse, I took from my childhood. I took from seeing my first models of leadership and action, which were my parents and my extended family members and the authority figures in my life.
21:32 And so I've taken a lot of that at the unconscious level. And now, you know, as a leadership expert, as a leadership researcher and a coach and consultant, I'm, I'm able to look back with a very interesting perspective on how I learned all of these things and how I behaved from these value systems, because I learned these things at the unconscious level. So start looking at your life stories, your personal experiences. What did you learn from your first role models of leadership? What did you learn from those authority figures? Where are they good? Are they bad? Are they, are they, you know, impeding on your leadership success or are they helping you expand into a greater leader? So here's where we get conscious, right? Cause we've been unconscious this whole time. Here, we become conscious and we make a list of those of those life stories, those life experiences that have influenced the way we lead today.
22:33 So that's the first thing I want for you to do. The second thing I want for you to do, my friend is to seek support. I want for you to find people outside of your organization, preferably people in your inner circle that see you for who you are. They're going to be the ones to tell you that's out of alignment, Denise, that's out of alignment with what you just said. You're behaving in such a very different way than what you just told me. So there's incongruence there, right? I have people in my life that do that. They're like, wait a minute, you said this, and now you're doing this. What's happening here. And those are the people that I surround myself with. I want those people in my life for ever. So start finding people who are honest with you, who are going to support you and will provide you the feedback that you need so that you then realize, wow, I'm being way out of alignment out of integrity.
23:28 This isn't even my value. Like I don't even know why I'm behaving from this set of values. This is just, is not who I am. And a lot of you will realize that, especially if you're, when you're leading people and you get feedback from your employees, they're going to say, wait a minute. Ma'am like, um, you said this, but now we're doing this. That should be a warning to you. Like, oh, I did say that. I wonder why I forgot that. Or I wonder why I said this instead. And so don't be judgmental in this process. I want for you to take this feedback and use it to where you can consciously evaluate it for yourself. So seek out support and feedback. And this is why we coaches are in this business. We are here to hold our leaders and our clients accountable. We want the best for them because they want the best for themselves.
24:21 It's a, we're here to put up the mirror again to their brain to show them, this is what you're driving from. These are your, your driving values. And is this intentional, or do you want to change these valleys? Do you want to modify them at this point in your career at this point in your life? And so seek out support and especially feedback from those that you trust. So that's the second thing I want you to do. We have two more things and then we'll wrap this show up. Number three, I want for you to look at your current leadership. Self-concept, it's our self-image as leaders. That's basically what a leadership self-concept as, how do we view ourselves as leaders? You know, a lot of us evaluate our leadership much more positively than what it actually is, right? Cause we have bias in our own brain, right?
25:17 We have bias, you know, within ourselves. And so we look at ourselves as these amazing leaders and in reality, we're not that great. And so be conscious and practice self honesty here. What's my current leadership self-concept and what are the things I can improve upon? And what are the things that I should challenge? Maybe these principles aren't serving me anymore. Maybe I do need to look at my bias. Maybe I do need to look at the prejudice and all of, all of the discriminatory, unconscious principles that have been driving me to this day, I want to, I want to put all this under the microscope because things don't feel right. Things feel a little off right now. And I think it's important that as leaders, we do self evaluations and kind of like we do pit stops right along our journeys. You know, here we are trucking along, you know, unconsciously, you know, moving through our lives and then something drastically may happen.
26:19 Or a result you created that is, is not, is not fulfilling, brings it to your attention, right? Those results that we create that are painful and that caused some discomfort in us, really stop us dead in our tracks. And we're ha we have to pull over, we have to take a pit stop and we have to put all of this under the microscope and go, okay, what, what went wrong here? What went, what did go really, really? Right, right. So this is where we're looking at, what went well and what didn't go well and how we can move forward, knowing what we've, what we know now, right? Taking those learnings and then getting back on the road until we need to make another pit stop. And so this is required. Work for a leader is to evaluate your current leadership self-concept and will this current leadership self-concept take you to the next level of success in your career or in your life.
27:16 So important. My friend, all right. The last thing I'm going to cover here is what are your unique leadership attributes? This is number four, make a list of all of these attributes that are unique to you. Pride. This is the culture add that you bring to the organization. What I bring to the organization is very different than what you bring to the organization. Thank goodness. Thank goodness. There is diversity in thinking there is diversity in thinking, because we were raised differently. We bring different unique perspectives of life and of leadership into the organization. Thank goodness. We're not the same. Can you imagine? Oh my goodness. I would hate it. If you were all like me, I would absolutely hate that. I want varying degrees of, of perspective. I want you to come with the fire in your belly because of what you learned from what you saw growing up from what you learned from your professors or for w for, from what you saw with your first leadership role models.
28:29 Like I want that diversity in thinking. So what are your unique attributes? What do you bring to the organization that he doesn't bring or that she doesn't bring honor? That it's important that we consciously honor that make a list of those unique attributes, right? Maybe because you are a woman, you get to bring a different perspective on nurturing and empathy and compassion. Maybe. I don't know, maybe a man can say the same thing because of how he raped was raised or conditioned as, as, as a man in a particular subculture, right? We can't generalize these blanket statements, right? Leadership is not a blanket statement. It's not, it's not a general way that we all lead. Thank goodness we don't lead the same. And so the idea of authentic leadership is a, you get to figure out for yourself, what is unique about you that you bring to the table and then explore that, get curious about it. And if you love it, then expand upon it. That's what authentic leadership is, is bringing your whole self as unique as you are to the organization. We need more unique leaders out in the world. All right, my friend, I hope you found today's episode, helpful bill George's authentic leadership theory is so phenomenal. Absolutely love talking about it. So we, again, we talked about his five distinct qualities of authentic leadership, and then I gave you some tips on how to cultivate that for yourself. All right, my friend have a fantastic week and I'll see you on our next episode. Take care.
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