So I have had to grow quite a bit as a leader. I’m a type A individual. I might actually be borderline OCD. I’m left brain to the max. So I’ve had to learn how my personality impacts others. I’ve had to learn how to engage people given my style.
What I haven’t ultimately changed is what makes me – well me. I’m passionate. I’m sarcastic. I leverage humor often. I am “how can we get to point a the fastest” person. I’m loud. I’m confident (ok, most of the time). I’m caring. I’m emotional. This makes for a unique combination. For me, it works well.
Then I’ll meet a person that I’m pretty sure bleeds glitter and pixie dust. They naturally are about positive reinforcement and comfort for themselves and others. They are softer toned and inviting. For them, it works well.
Here’s the thing I’ve come to accept. If we as leaders have genuine intentions and be authentic to who we are, it will work for you. We don’t all have to be identical clones. That doesn’t mean never evolve. This other person makes me look like a bull in a china shop. I want to learn some techniques that increases inviting people to engage. However, I may need to do this in a way that’s true to me. If I just copy someone else, people can tell when you are acting and they will stop trusting you.
For example, I’m not a soft sell kind of gal. Recently, I was told to increase my question asking with adding “May I”. No matter how hard I try, every time I hear the words “May I”, I think of “Mother May I” and I started having flashbacks to bad moments from my teenage years. (Yes, I probably need a therapist). However, I can understand why asking gently is important and find a way to accomplish this that is authentic to me, because then it will be natural not forced. I could say “would you mind?” or “would everyone be ok with…” instead. Now the person who was asking me wouldn’t care which way I said it but so often we take feedback as verbatim. Make it you own. Take the essense and/or reason and evolve authentically – then be proud that you are different.
What do you find unique about your leadership approach that you’re proud of?