Legitimate Leadership Authenticity is Discerningly Adaptable

Adaptability requires confidence and, ironically, consistent character. Being adaptable doesn’t mean being fickle, constantly changing course or bending under pressure. It calls for sticking to principles and plans with consideration, reasonable flexibility and understanding. Legitimate leadership authenticity is discerningly adaptable.

Being consistent in how you display these traits allows your people to count on you. They know what they’re getting and what to anticipate. Employees want their leaders to be reliable and able to handle an ever-evolving environment with a variety of inputs, viewpoints and choices. They need leaders to adapt to the diversity of their surroundings and adjust to people’s unique situations.

Leaders can, and should, assess their personalities to gauge their flexibility. A stubborn, prideful spirit clearly isn’t geared for authenticity. A trusted colleague or qualified executive coach can help you objectively determine how adaptive you are. Coaches are trained to guide you through adaptability’s nuances and steer your personality toward this critical mindset.

An adaptable approach fosters trust in challenging times and allows you to be true to yourself. People will know where they stand with you. When leaders put on airs, hide their intentions or contradict themselves, authenticity and trust are compromised. Leaders who remain calm, collected, insightful, understanding and willing to try new ideas demonstrate the trust-building power of adaptability.

Adaptable leaders know how to build unity within their teams. They avoid power games, politics or favoritism. They understand how to pull people into a common effort, pick their battles, make appropriate exceptions, meet urgent needs and make effective changes when necessary. Leaders who maintain the status quo, rigidly cling to rules and fear new approaches show a lack of authenticity, causing employees to hold back their best.

Leaders also gain respect and trust when they adapt to others’ input. Most teams include people with diverse backgrounds, personalities and perspectives, which encourage a wide range of ideas and solutions. Authentically considering what people offer and appreciating their contributions affirm them and add to their sense of fulfillment.

What do you think? Are you discerning adaptable? I’d love to hear from you. You can call me at 704-827-4474; let’s talk. And as always, I can be reached here, or on LinkedIn.

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