The Portrait of a Leader Must Be Painted in Genuine Strokes

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A genuine portrait is critical for your leadership brand as well as your professional success.

It portrays your image as perceived by others, the impression you make on them. Your personality, style, behavior, body language, words, and attitude all contribute.

In today’s world, a five-minute interaction, whether in person, through e-mail or via social media, can define a leader for years to come.

It may seem superficial and therefore unimportant, but as a leader you will greatly benefit from knowing how you come across to others, because then you can make the necessary improvements.

Not manipulative or dishonest improvements, but in making a genuine investments in our skills and craft.

Here are some of the elements to pay attention to in your portrait:

Statesmanship: People are constantly judging our behavior and forming theories about our competence, character, and commitment. Your actions are how people get to know you. Make sure everyone knows what you stand for and why. Be open.

Craftsmanship. People are constantly listening to what we say our image speaks louder than we do, our words, our actions and manner need to be congruent, and otherwise we will be doubted.  Everything we say and do is interpreted in the context of who we are and what people think of us. Be honest.

Courtship. People seek personal connections, and impressions are always interpreted through the lens of personal preference and identification. True leadership reflects the trustworthiness, caring, and capabilities of your character. Be real.

Citizenship. People have high expectations, they want leaders to be likeable, they want them to be personable and to be regular people. At the same time they want them to be above reproach, better than average, and demonstrative of their high standards Make sure people know you are human and that you live by your values, which are not compromised under any means. Be genuine.

Hardship. People look at leaders on how they are under crisis, who you are in hardship expresses who you are in your leadership. Leaders need to show that they understand the context—including challenges. Use those  challenges to motivate others and show confidence in the outcome. Be fearless.

Great leadership and long careers, demand that we invest in ourselves. We invest in ourselves, with education, training, networking, experience, and we must continue to do so by refining the messages we convey in our behavior, words, and attitudes.

The picture you paint, the portrait you convey, the image you sketch, must and always be a true representation of who you are in everything you do.

Do not allow others to leave their impressions for you. Make sure you present yourself in a manner that is always believable, favorable and valuable.

The portrait of a leader must always be painted in the genuine strokes of their heart.

Lead From Within: Just as you develop technical expertise and interpersonal skills, you should paint your portrait in a way that serves you as a leader.

 


 

N A T I O N A L   B E S T S E L L E R
The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

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Photo Credit: Getty Images


Lolly Daskal is one of the most sought-after executive leadership coaches in the world. Her extensive cross-cultural expertise spans 14 countries, six languages and hundreds of companies. As founder and CEO of Lead From Within, her proprietary leadership program is engineered to be a catalyst for leaders who want to enhance performance and make a meaningful difference in their companies, their lives, and the world.

Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR, Inc.com, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.

6 Responses to “The Portrait of a Leader Must Be Painted in Genuine Strokes”

  1. Martina

    01. Apr, 2014

    Excellent post Lolly.

    The most important investment we can ever make is in ourselves.

    And the most important investment we can make into the lives of other’s, as leaders, parents, teachers, role models, is by being authentic and exemplifying the behaviors we wish to see in them.

    Reply to this comment
  2. Terri Klass

    01. Apr, 2014

    Leading with authenticity means first accepting who we are and understanding what are our core beliefs. Then when we present ourselves to others, we must be consistent and forthright.

    I love your idea of : Do not allow others to leave their impressions for you.

    We need to be the person we need to be. Although we evolve and learn from others, we must not allow them to tell us who we should be. We get to choose who we are.

    Fabulous post Lolly!

    Reply to this comment
  3. LaRae Quy

    01. Apr, 2014

    A very insightful post, Lolly.

    Love this: “In today’s world, a five-minute interaction, whether in person, through e-mail or via social media, can define a leader for years to come.”

    We must accept that social media interactions are the wave of the future. Instead of lamenting, we need to find ways to connect in short, pithy ways and that is impossible unless we are authentic and speak from the heart.

    Great post.

    Reply to this comment
  4. Panteli Tritchew

    05. Apr, 2014

    Greetings Lolly,
    When we speak of portraits, we speak of images, and when we speak of images, we all too often think of building an image as something separate from who we are, something to be created for a specific purpose, for a specific moment, for a specific audience. Something that we can quickly put up and maintain for a short period, like the false-front movie sets for the old westerns, painted plywood masquerading as three-dimensional depth.
    In the short-term, that can and has worked for many.
    But maintaining a false front is hard work and sooner or later, over time and under duress, our Inner Us will break out, surprising everyone and perhaps ourselves.

    The word “image” itself is loaded, suggesting some kind of artifice. That’s why I love your title for this piece, Lolly, “The Portrait of a Leader Must Be Painted in Genuine Strokes.” Emphasis …Genuine.

    If we can “Be open… Be honest… Be real… Be genuine… Be fearless, ” as we work on ourselves and our way of being in the world, then “The picture you paint, the portrait you convey, the image you sketch, must and always be a true representation of who you are in everything you do.” Then our portrait is not a false-front-facade, but an extension of our depth and our dimensions. Great post, and great chat last week!

    Reply to this comment
  5. Martina

    02. Dec, 2014

    Thanks for the marvelous posting! I truly ebjoyed
    reading it, you’re a great author.I will make sure to bookmar your blog and will eventually
    come back someday. I want too encourage yourself to conrinue your greeat work, have
    a nice evening!

    Reply to this comment
  6. [email protected]

    29. Jan, 2016

    Excellent post Lolly.

    Reply to this comment

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