Quite a number of posts recently have taken me aback and have become a cause of dilemma lately. One of the renowned Professors shared a Post that said that being authentic at workplace can be dangerous! While there are reviews and write-ups which s...
Quite a number of posts recently have taken me aback and have become a cause of dilemma lately. One of the renowned Professors shared a Post that said that being authentic at workplace can be dangerous! While there are reviews and write-ups which say that by being authentic potential candidates might affect their chances of becoming leaders. As ridiculous as it sounds to me, this has now become a serious concern because the sources publishing it are the market leaders in research and almost everybody reads and values what is written and published by them! I am not against them but it just does not sound right to me!
Let’s start with the literal meaning of authenticity. Being authentic means being real or genuine; and the most important trait that a leader should have is being authentic. With exceptional researches and developments in the area of Organizational Behavior, we have now started forcing behaviors on people which is why most of us are unhappy and unsatisfied with the jobs we are in. Have you ever thought that why are you unhappy at your current job? Let me tell you the reason and that is because you are asked to please people around you most of the times and it is not your work that brings you good review or performance but your behavior at the organization that fetches you rewards, no doubt you will feel suffocated and punished! Any organization runs on profits and revenues and until you are able to contribute positively and significantly on the basis of revenues and profits, you are not required to please. Ofcourse, behavior is important but humans are social animals and each and everybody knows how they are required to present themselves and behave in an organizational set-up. A little mentoring is fine and required to fine tune the individual and help him/her learn to behave according to the organization’s culture but telling them to mask their feelings and behave in a portrait fixed style will definitely leave anyone frustrated and low self-esteemed!
While developing leadership traits in an individual, we cannot train them to being less authentic or find ways to mask their feelings inappropriately because any one would look up to their leader so that someday they could become like them. And being authentic is the key to success! High chances people might feel that their leader needs to improve in a certain manner and when they will be able to convey, the person on the other side will be able to make efforts to improve himself or herself while if a person is masked to be perfect, he/she will never be able to thrive on becoming better and this is a real issue because there is no one in the world who does not need to improve!
There are multiple instances when the leader was authentic and the organization succeeded because of their authenticity. Everybody knows that Steve Jobs was thrown out of Apple stating that he lacked the leadership skills but Apple re-hired him because he was authentic, he knew what he wanted and how he wanted! Another example is Mahatma Gandhi, and everybody knows how authentic he was and how important that he could fight the battle of independence on his terms of non-violence and truth!
Authenticity might be a problem initially but it is a catalyst to creating trust within people and only if employees are able to trust their leaders, they will be able to deliver results to the best of their capabilities! When employees are not able to trust leadership, it results in chaos and melancholies. A leader sets the direction for the organization and he/she can only set direction and show the path, the employees are his/her real strength. If the culture of mutual trust and respect prevails in the organization, it flourishes else it might succeed for some time but will end up falling like a house of cards. A great leader will never ever allow inauthenticity breed near him/her. Besides, ever book and every article that talks about great leaders says that the best of leaders are extremely honest and prefer people around them who are extremely honest and authentic.
This article was first published on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/need-being-authentic-tripta-arora?articleId=6153169877222854656#comments-6153169877222854656&trk=prof-post