Modern leadership is about making people’s lives easier, with the hope that quality of life improvements will filter down into employee work and the success of the business overall. You might be surprised to learn that the traits most employees look for in a leader are based on understanding and integrity. 88% of employees surveyed by Dale Carnegie Training said they value bosses that listen to them, but only 60% felt their current leader exhibited that trait. Most employees want a leader who will develop themselves and others, allowing them to share ideas, make mistakes, learn from them and improve. It can be tempting to conceal our perceived inadequacies and flaws to preserve our polished facades or adopt a leadership persona that doesn’t chime with our actual personas, but both of these approaches create inner conflict, with leaders struggling to align their work and personal personas. Dropping the mask at work completely might not sacrifice your integrity, but it will almost certainly sacrifice some of your authority. It’s up to you how much of that authority you’re willing to relinquish and how much of the mask you’re willing to permit yourself to drop.
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