Let’s all be a bit more ‘perfectly imperfect’ – leadership reflections

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As a leader, of any kind, at any level there’s an unspoken expectation that you have the answers, the guidance, the ‘plan’ to solve it all. And in certain situations you do have the answers and in those all elusive moments you feel somewhat worthy of your title as a ‘leader’ and the tight grip of ‘imposter syndrome’ temporarily loosens. But sometimes those two parts of us collide- our overwhelming ambition to fulfil our purpose as leaders and the things that make us fundamentally human and thus ‘perfectly imperfect.’

And so I sit here questioning how I’m to reconcile these two identities of mine in the best interest of ‘leading another’. If I conceal my emotion, much like Elsa from Frozen, I risk losing authenticity and credibility as a leader. But if I openly share my emotions and don’t provide enough rationality, measure and reassurance, I risk losing my ability to provide others with the clarity they may be seeking. It’s a fine balance and one that I am chipping away at every day. How do you authentically lead with clarity? How do you model vulnerability yet be a pillar of strength? How do you avoid perpetuating perfect so as not to inhibit another’s right to express themselves without fear of judgement? It can be done and we know it can be done- we see it globally every day (and even some frightful examples of how not to lead!) But as for now and as for me…it’s still a skill set I am trying to secure. One thing is for certain- putting the cards on the table about it and sharing this dichotomy may just be part of the knack of overcoming the challenges I face and being able to sustain an authentic leadership style…and maintain who I truly am while I’m at it. 

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