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Modeling the Way. Employees operate under growing conditions of uncertainty and stress …as such it is critical that leaders step in to ‘model the way’. Values are a critical aspect of leaders’ ability to model the way.

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Employees operate under growing conditions of uncertainty and stress

…as such it is critical that leaders step in to ‘model the way’


As a first step, leaders need to determine what is important to them and what their own values are…the path that they wish to take

A critical aspect of this is discovering what they care about, finding their voice


Knowing your “inner territory,” what you value, makes you a stronger leader because it allows you to act with integrity as your values guide your actions

When a leader’s actions are guided by values s/he is able to achieve authenticity as a leader


When leaders have clarity on their personal values they experience and demonstrate a greater sense of commitment to value-aligned action and those with whom they work

values need to be forged not forced

Effective leaders do not impose their values on employees, they find a way to integrate their personal values with those of their employees to forge a common value system

Values need to be forged, not forced

Leaders need to model the shared values….

Leaders illustrate what the values ‘look like’ in the organizational context


Leaders model values by:

  • How they spend their time
  • The language they use
  • The types of questions they ask
  • The types of feedback they seek

Leaders teach values by:

  • Confronting critical incidents
  • Telling stories that exemplify values
  • Visibly demonstrating value-consistent behavior

Storytelling is one of the most effective tools at a leaders disposal…


  • Stories are easy to remember
  • People relate to stories
  • Stories demonstrate values in a way that is meaningful
  • People learn more effectively through stories
what questions should you be asking if you want people to focus on
What questions should you be asking if you want people to focus on……
  • Continuous Improvement
  • Quality
  • Innovation
  • Integrity
  • Teamwork
  • Collaboration
  • Personal Responsibility
  • Customer /Client Satisfaction
  • Trust
  • Growth
  • Communication
authentic leadership description
Authentic Leadership Description
  • Authentic Leadership –focuses on whether leadership is genuine
  • Interest in Authentic Leadership
    • Increasing in recent times due to social upheavals
    • People longing for trustworthy leaders
    • Identified earlier in transformational leadership research but not studied separately
    • Needed evidence-based research of construct
definition of authentic leadership
“A pattern that draws upon and promotes both positive psychological capacities and a positive ethical climate, to foster greater self-awareness, an internalized moral perspective, balanced processing of information, and relational transparency on the part of leaders working with followers, fostering positive self-development.”

Walumbwa, Avolio, Gardner, Wernsing & Peterson, 2008

Definition of Authentic Leadership
basic model of authentic leadership


Reflecting on one’s core values, identity, emotions, motives

Being aware of and trusting your own feelings

Internalized moral perspective

Self-regulatory process using internal moral standards to guide behavior

Balanced processing

Ability to analyze informational objectively and explore other people’s opinions before making a decision

- Relational transparency

Being open and honest in presenting one’s true self to others

Basic Model of Authentic Leadership
practical approaches to authentic leadership
Bill George (2003, 2007)

Leader characteristic model

Leaders have genuine desire to serve others

Five characteristics of Authentic Leaders

Understand their purpose

Strong values

Trusting relationships


Act from the heart (mission)

Practical Approaches to Authentic Leadership
practical approaches to authentic leadership1
Robert Terry (1993)

Action-centered model

Leaders should strive to do what is right

Two core leadership questions:

What is really, really going on?

What are we going to do about it?

Developed Authentic Action Wheel to help leaders frame problems

Locate the problem on the diagnostic wheel

Strategically select an appropriate response to the problem

Practical Approaches to Authentic Leadership
  • Fulfills society’s expressed need for trustworthy leadership. Fills a void in an uncertain world.
  • Provides broad guidelines for those who want to become authentic leaders. Both practical and theoretical approaches provide a map.
  • Like transformational and servant leadership, AL has an explicit moral dimension.
  • Unlike traits that only some people exhibit, everyone can learn to be more authentic.
  • Can be measured using an established instrument (ALQ).
  • The theory is still in the formative stages, so some concepts in the practical approaches are not fully developed or substantiated.
  • The moral component of AL is not fully explained. It’s unclear how higher values such as justice inform authentic leadership.
  • The rationale for including positive psychological capacities as a part of AL has not been clearly explained by researchers.
  • The link between authentic leadership and positive organizational outcomes is unclear. It is also not clear whether AL is sufficient to achieve organizational goals.
People have the capacity to become authentic leaders. It is a lifelong learning process.

Human Resource departments may be able to foster authentic leadership behaviors in employees who move into leadership positions.

Leaders are always trying to do the “right” thing, to be honest with themselves and others, and to work for the common good.

Leaders are shaped by critical life events that lead to growth and greater authenticity.

reflection question
Reflection Question
  • What similarities do you see between Kouzes’ and Posner’s Exemplary Leadership Model and Authentic Leadership?
  • What differences do you see between these two models?
  • If you had to choose one as the basis for your leadership development, which would you choose? Why?