After a fortnight which included our Authentic Leadership Course and two workshops on Authentic Leadership I was ready for lunch today with the Finance Minister. That sounds very grand for a minion like me and yes, there were about 120 other people there. But sometimes you just get lucky and I arrived in my little panel-beaters loan car about the time the big silver BMW arrived and we walked in together.
Not being one to let an opportunity go amiss, he introduced himself “Bill” and we chatted about the AUT Centre for Innovative Leadership and our focus on authenticity. ”So, what is one thing about leadership that politicians could take from you”. “Excuse me, can I take Mr English, I know everyone wants to talk to him”, interrupted the very polite and organised function manager. “Be real – that’s want people want from our leaders”, and he was gone, from me anyway and his five minutes of fame with me were over.
It struck me during his speech that he was kinda real – spoke about his six children and their interest-free student loans – mentioned that he sometimes gets told what to do by his boss.
Not that hard to be real is it? Or is it? Depends on whether you’re prepared to be vulnerable, disclose some stuff and let people in. In my world over 70 people in the last fortnight got a taste of what it’s like to start discovering their authenticity through their own stories.
What is your story?