In the workplace and in business characteristics like drive, tenacity, grit, decisiveness, focus, and forthrightness are often seen as essential on the pathway to success.
Conversely, when discussing factors that struggling managers suggest might have deterred their progress some key attributes were mentioned as hindrances; sensitivity, too empathetic, a tendency to need time to process information before acting, introverted character, conflict averse and so on.
Along the line, in deep discussions, certain insights emerge. Qualities which suggest, patience, people focus, partnership focus were derided as being mainly unhelpful in business. Of course, there is a degree of nuance and subjectivity, but in general terms the tendency to value traits that are more ‘out there’ seems to a be a common perception of how to be successful in management or business. This contrasts with the derision for characteristics typically viewed as ‘soft’. The negative comparison may be quite clear in terms of culture and feedback which can support the notion that only one leadership style can be valid. It’s refreshing to see this notion being challenged. Apart from the obvious problems, trying to measure up to a style of leadership which is not aligned to personal values and attributes can lead to intense self-doubt.
An anti-model audit is our self-reflective tool to examine styles of leadership based on goals, personal characteristics and skill set. It seeks to find a leadership style that is authentic, aligned to individual personalities, values and core beliefs.
At DDC, we use this in our mentoring work, and we reimagine leadership models in a way that creates greater clarity and connection with the individual’s authentic self. For more information, email us:
We’d love to hear about how you found your leadership style and aligned your leadership style to your personal values!