The principal aspect of leadership is the ability to influence people to achieve a specific goal. These are the people who lead the team to victory. My leadership mission statement is to improve the world so future generations will live peacefully and prosper. My leadership purpose is to provide my team the opportunity to solve interesting problems and make good money. In addition, I want to contribute to creating great products. I define my success through the ability to give chances to others and to benefit society in general. Consequently, the self-assessment of being an effective leader can be performed by answering eight particular questions and analyzing the essential components of personality.
It is essential to analyze the background, core values, and understanding of the concept of self-authenticity to answer why anyone should be led by you. Eight inquiries should be addressed in advance, providing a comprehensive image of leadership (HBR’s 10 Must Reads: On Leadership, 2011). The first question is which people and experiences in your early life had the greatest impact on you (HBR’s 10 Must Read: On Leadership, 2011). There is no doubt that it was my grandfather who became the most influential figure in my life. The formation of character, habits, attitudes, and my grandfather’s influence can be traced throughout my growing-up. He encouraged me to develop a consciousness of my individuality.
In adolescence, I had insecurities, but I received the support and guidance I needed in communication with my grandfather. Moreover, my childhood playmates also influenced me; I became aware of freedom and independence, which is usually combined with a desire to be like friends. Regarding an event that changed my life, it is associated with my grandfather’s death. I rethought a lot and began to perceive reality differently. Thus, it was important that, at that moment, I could see a worthy role model from early childhood.
Self-Awareness and Authentic Self
Self-awareness depends on a person’s ability and inner resources. The authentic self can be noticed when people forget and cease to control themselves. For me, this experience is familiar when parents, friends, and peers expect a particular behavior from me, but some feelings come into collision with actions. Therefore, I try to listen to my inner voice that insistently says what I want to do in these cases. Moreover, I pay attention to what in other people’s behavior bothers me. As individuals tend to notice what they do not want to see in themselves, I can interpret my emotions and adhere to the rational part of my mind.
If I want to address my authentic self, I need to ask the right questions. For instance, the question “do I feel that this is right for me?” is beneficial as I draw attention to my intuitive feeling, which at the same time sounds like an answer to this question. This is my authentic self, which must be heard and trusted. If I am not interested in what I am doing, life turns into a burdensome duty, losing its meaning. On the contrary, I assume this is the real me if I do something that has value. Overall, while performing some tasks, I should feel a surge of energy.
My core values are kindness and self-development; they came from my early childhood and have not changed throughout my life. Self-education is the acquisition by a person of the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary for him/her. I believe this fundamental principle determines my attitude to life in general. Kindness and self-development are interconnected; since childhood, compassion has been nurtured through conversations with my parents. It helped to develop my ideas about what is right and what is wrong. Reading literature also stimulated in me the empathy and understanding of fictional characters. As for self-development, this is impossible without the constant development of intelligence. As a child, I absorbed new knowledge through literature, and educational programs about history, man, planet, space, and technology development.
As a result, self-education requires me to see the meaning of life; it also helps me set goals consciously and develop independent thinking, self-organization, and self-control. I continue to be interested in how the various mechanisms are arranged and work and track scientific and technological advances and discoveries. These days, it is necessary to be able to adapt to society. By communicating, I gain knowledge, acquire skills, get emotions and impressions, and experience life. I listen to different people, how and what they say, and their reactions to it. This helps me to perceive someone else’s opinion and try to understand the interlocutor.
Extrinsic and Intrinsic Motivation
Since authentic leaders are required to be highly motivated, they need to understand what drives them. As for all other people, I have two types of motivation – external and internal. I can evaluate my progress by the standards of the outside world. I also like the positive assessment of my actions and recognition by competent people. The source of my intrinsic motivation lies in the sense of meaning in my life. Internal incentives are closely related to my past, the way I understand it: I am stimulated by constant personal growth, encouraging other people in their development, helping to solve social problems, and a passion for improving the world in general.
The most important is to find a balance between the desire to establish me in the external world and internal satisfaction from work done. Being ambitious, I try not to meet society’s expectations presented by the environment, parents, and friends. Intrinsic motivation is more closely tied to my value system than extrinsic motivation, and it gives me a much stronger sense of my worth. The most valuable point for me is to do everything well, no matter what I undertake. However, I also confirm that I can substantially impact the community by working with other people.
A leader cannot be successful alone; even the most confident-looking one needs support. It is easy to lose the right direction if the person does not discuss it with those he/she trusts. Hence, I surround myself with like-minded people and, relying on them, confidently follow my chosen path. The team that supports me consists of my friends and family; they help me with advice and encourage me to keep working in troubled times. During the period of success, they celebrate achievements with me. After challenging cases, I can recover energy among those whom I fully trust, and with whom I can talk about everything. Thus, I appreciate the advice and value my friends and family members who see me as a person. Nevertheless, I should diversify my team with competent directors so that I can learn from them. If I want to improve my position as a leader and achieve progress in life, I need to surround myself with intelligent and successful individuals.
Integration of Life
One of the essential tasks facing a leader is to ensure the integrity of his/her life. To find harmony, a person needs to balance all its elements – work, family, social activities, and friends. I can still not be the same person in all aspects of my life; it is caused by existing prejudices and expectations that I am currently addressing. I adhere to the rule, emphasizing that in order not to betray myself, I must consciously make a choice every time it is needed. Sometimes it is difficult to decide, and I accept that I can make mistakes. Integrity requires self-discipline, mainly when a crisis occurs, and it is most comfortable giving up and reacting as old habits dictate and determine actions. Accordingly, my main task is to acquire integrity and spread it in all spheres of life. I spend time with friends and family, balancing sports, spiritual practices, and social activities. All this helps me to develop an influential leader and maintain my authenticity.
Concerning the definition of an authentic leader, it signifies the sincerity, openness, and honesty of a person. It concerns not only relationships with other people but also relationships with myself and my inner conscience. I am more effective when I behave authentically even though it is difficult to find a middle ground – being myself and managing team members. Each of them has his/her personality; therefore, it is necessary to lead them or influence them considering this aspect (Northouse, 2019). However, it is an excellent test for me as a leader as I should know which traits to show, whom, and when. When I behave authentically, I can see changes in the environment and trust my intuition.
In the initial stages of being a leader, it is challenging to adapt to any situation and people quickly and not lose my individuality. I faced some misunderstandings within the team when I was trying to be honest and straightforward. After several attempts to reach an agreement and find this balance, I can say that it was worth it. The experience of being my authentic self has taught me to set simple and clear goals. At the same time, I have learned that expressing myself should be combined with continuous learning of various sides of my nature and respect for others’ personalities.
Developing Authentic Leadership
Regarding my steps to develop my authentic leadership, I try to set particular goals. First, do not undertake more than three or four large-scale tasks at the same time. Setting goals and a sense of victory and success will become a constant incentive and motivation for new opportunities (Northouse, 2019). At the end of each day, I celebrate my accomplishments; this is required to discipline myself, set new goals, and achieve them.
Second, I adhere to the belief that actions should complement words. It is one of the crucial principles, of translating reliable ideas into reality. Moreover, I intend to get knowledge in psychology as a true leader is looking for something in common with his/her followers (Northouse, 2019). It is noteworthy to learn to master this skill for competent management. Consequently, it is necessary to engage in self-knowledge and be ready to share consciousness about myself with others (HBR’s 10 Must Reads: On Leadership, 2011). I practice the ability to self-disclosure; in addition, I surround myself with friends who are honest and not afraid to tell me the truth. They teach me to perceive criticism positively and analyze myself for all the wrong actions to change for the better.
To sum up, the personal self-analysis results showed acquired skills that contribute to leadership. The survey determined that I have the ability to solve problems. Effective leaders are well aware of how to deal with emerging challenges. Therefore, it is a crucial skill, and I can see the essence of issues, break down complex tasks into simple components, build processes and find working solutions. Moreover, the test proved that I have an innovative state of mind. This is the ability to look at things from a new angle, give a chance to an unusual idea, and listen carefully to all opinions and suggestions from various sources. For leaders, it also includes a lack of fear of experimentation, and a willingness to make mistakes and try again. A true leader needs all these qualities that are usually inherent in creative people.
Therefore, as a leader, I am excellent in communication skills. In order to lead others, I need to be able to share my plans and talk about my ideas. Hence, if I want to articulate different concepts clearly and win over like-minded people, I should improve my communication skills. Finally, I am an activator; at every moment, I used to have a clear understanding of the ultimate goal, the stages of its achievement, and ways to overcome potential obstacles along the way.
HBR’s 10 Must Reads: On Leadership (2011). Harvard Business Press.
Northouse, P. G. (2019). Leadership: Theory and Practice (8th ed.). Sage Publications.