AUTHENTIC LEADERSHIP: Meaning, examples, characteristics, theories


Expect to learn about authentic leadership, authentic leadership theories, and examples of authentic leadership, the definition of authentic leadership, authentic leadership characteristics, and authentic leadership importance from this post.


This is a theory formed by Bill George in his book authentic leaderships published in 2003. It’s a theory still forming in the world which sees leaders as real and genuine.

 Authentic leadership entails that if leaders are genuine and real then they are likely to succeed in their business. There is other important leadership for leaders but being yourself helps you develop those skills.

Researchers have in fact show that authentic leaderships are the biggest predictor of an employee’s job satisfaction, workplace happiness and organizational commitment.

It’s important to understand authentic leaderships. And how being yourself could be the best option for you as a business manager or leader. Also how authentic leaderships knowledge could benefit your team.


Authentic leadership theories are a set of values, qualities and skills a leader of a business should possess. If they want to be an effective business director or team leader.

Although the authentic theories is still under consideration on been a general acceptable norm in business. Most business owners already have begun to use these theories.

There are a certain set of behaviors outlined in the authentic leadership theory that makes it tangible. And they include: 


this authentic theory simply states that a leader should be familiar with both how they view themselves and how others see them. But more importantly, how their actions affect those around them for better or worse.


The authentic theory of transparency means having clear motives for every action. Furthermore, It is very important for authentic leaderships. Strong communication skills are also essential, along with tact.


finding balance around your terms in business is an authentic theory trait. Being able to navigate the dynamics of teams, tasks, and project needs.  Are however, essential in authentic leadership so that each area is served to the fullest without sacrificing another. 

Strong sense of morality

A strong sense of morality is an authentic leaderships theory. An inner compass that guides decision-making. And helps keep workplace discussions fair and equitable. 


The authentic leadership examples model hopes to create business leaders who don’t fall into the tempting traps of the contemporary corporate culture.

Authentic leaders are known to follow the moral compass examples. They believe in adopting ethical and socially responsible business practices. Always, in dealing with their partners and clients

An authentic leader is one who never cuts corners to come across as a hero or get a job done. He doesn’t even attempt to capture the limelight. Instead, he cedes the limelight to the deserving people he works with which is his or her team.

Some examples of authentic leadership include the following:

EMOTIONS: Examples of authentic leadership

Authentic leaders should adhere to the example of authentic leadership. Which requires them to listen to their hearts and display courage and empathy.


The authentic leaderships theory revolves around the example of integrity of the leaders. They will gain respect for how true they are to their words. It is also easy for subordinates to trust leaders who are honest and have integrity.


This authentic leaderships example refers to leaders who are pragmatic and think long-term. They don’t focus on short-term gains or losses but are always ready to take actions that will only pay off later.


An authentic leader never shies away from listening to opinions especially his critics. Such leaders welcome constructive criticism and are even willing to change their stance. If they ever find merit in the arguments or criticism.


Authentic leadership is really incomplete without the right purpose and vision. Whichever authentic leadership examples we look at, we will always find that the leaders are striving people.

They are always working towards achieving their own goals. While also helping those around them to fulfill, and even exceed, their potential.


The example of transparency should be a watchword for an authentic leader. Accessibility and ability to combine free communication with empathy and justice.

The public and private personalities of an authentic leader are almost identical. As they are not ever afraid of showing their real side in any situation.


The definition of authentic leadership is derived from the Greek word “ authentikos “ meaning principal or genuine. Many ancient Greek principles and philosophies are still pertinent in the world of business as social leadership.

Authentic leadership emphasizes on transparency, genuineness and honesty. Authentic leadership definition build authentic relationships and inspire trust and motivation in their employees. The definition of authentic leadership lays in the act of an authentic leaders literally.

Definition of authentic leadership simply entails defining a person who would:

  • Take into account all available alternatives and act with prudence
  • Remain emotionally unperturbed and stay in control under all circumstances
  • Give others a fair treatment
  • Display courage by doing the right things


The characteristics of authentic leadership possess several qualities. In order to achieve the characteristics of an authentic and successful leader. And also, encourage increased employee performance.

Authentic Leadership characteristics work on the principle that a leader can prove their legitimacy by nurturing sincere relationships. With their subordinates and giving importance to their input through actions put on exhibit.

An authentic leadership characteristic encourage their subordinates to be more open; they appreciate their support in the success of the organization. The leaderships style of an authentic leader promotes both individual and team performance.

Some of the characteristics of an authentic leadership include:

IDENTIFYING YOUR VALUES: characteristics of an authentic leadership

Having strong values and commitment to an ethical way of leading is another way of being an authentic leader.

 Knowing your own ethical code as well as the ethics of your company, and refusing to compromise these ethics, can help strengthen your leadership skills and instill trust in your team members.


One of the characteristics of an authentic leader is one who regularly assesses their strengths and weaknesses. And also, considers how these factors affect their ability to lead.


Authentic leaders do not hide things from their team or tolerate an environment of secrecy. Instead, these leaders focus on open communication.

And as well, encourage their team members to voice concerns, observations, opinions, suggestions, and criticisms.


Being a leader that is authentic involves demonstrating sense of purpose in order to be real and approachable. Often, having a sense of purpose will come out as a sense of passion in practice.

A sense of purpose can look differently depending on the leader, but ultimately authentic leaders won’t need to fake a sense of purpose.  They already are passionate about their work, and followers can see that in their behavior and in their practice. 


This characteristic of authentic leadership is essential. Goals and self-discipline helps authentic leaders have the focus they need to move forward, no matter what comes their way. A consistent, cool, calm type of leader is definitely you want during a storm or stressful times.

Not only about having the goals in mind, but also, the self-discipline to get there. This is what makes an authentic leader easy to follow. Employees will feel confident and calm when they see a leader that has that self-discipline as well.

It simply encourages the employees self-awareness for their reaction and response, encouraging them to be calm and feel relax as well.

 Authentic leaders don’t freak out or complain. They set the tone for their employees by keeping their cool and adjusting the plan when necessary. Staying focus, adjusting when the need arises, communicating, and moving forward is watch keys for authentic leaders.  


Authentic leaders are willing to show compassion, especially to their employees. They are always sensitive to the needs of others and are willing to help them get what they need.

There are many positive effects that can come from this kind of self-awareness and leadership. This genuine heart helps employees feel that they are more than just a cog in the machine. They also get to know that their leader sees them as a person and cares about them as a person.

Mental health, emotional intelligence, self-awareness, and sensitivity are all important to this kind of leadership. An authentic leader shows their genuine heart, self-awareness, and compassion in many ways.

 One of the ways they show this is by checking in on employees regularly.  An authentic leader will make sure relationships between coworkers are going well. Again, authentic leaders show genuine concern and ask because they want to know and help, not out of politeness. 


The importance of authentic leadership entails Leaders who relate to their teams. And as well, inspire effective actions which are critically important to business success.

For professionals seeking to advance their careers and make a lasting impact on their firms. Investing the time and effort into becoming an authentic leader can be immensely valuable in many ways.

But the common question you should ask yourself is what characterizes authentic leaderships, and why is it a worthy pursuit? Because this type of genuine leadership style promotes open communication within a team and has wide-reaching benefits within a department.

One common importance of authentic leaderships are the increase when team members work together under a strong leader. Other importance of authentic leaderships includes:

Better relationship with colleagues

  • Firstly, Higher levels of trust
  • Secondly, Greater productivity
  • Finally,A more positive working environment

Increased job satisfaction among employees

When leaders make each employee feel seen and heard, they’re likely to stick around longer. 

  • AnemphasisoncollaborationratherthanindividualismIt’s often overlooked but connecting the work an individual does to the positive outcomes the entire group experiences helps people feel more fulfilled. 
  • Increasedlevelsofinspiration, creativity, andproductivityWhen employees are given a positive environment. Furthermore, they have more mental space to solve project challenges. 
  • HigherperformanceratingsoverallA strong, authentic leader will be the backbone of their team. This key foundational element makes it easier for everyone else to succeed which means more progress in less time. 

What is the core of authentic leadership?

“Authentic leadership is a type of leadership that emphasizes transparency and ethical leader behavior and fosters open sharing of information necessary to make choices while welcoming followers’ views,” according to the Harvard Business Review.

What are the three pillars of authentic leadership?

Self-awareness, self-control, and ethical behavior are the three pillars that enable leaders to become more authentic and establish trusting relationships with their followers.

What makes authentic leaders effective?

Genuine leaders are open and truthful in their interactions with others at work and while expressing their own emotions. This may entail correcting team members when necessary with constructive criticism and by making an admission of guilt.

What are the qualities of an authentic person?

Simply said, authenticity means that you act in accordance with your own personality, values, and spirit despite of external pressure to do differently. You take ownership of your errors and are sincere both with yourself and others. Your actions, ideals, and values are in harmony.

What are the four behaviors of authenticity?

According to this viewpoint, the core of authenticity consists of four linked but distinct elements: consciousness, objective processing, behavior, and relational orientation.

Why is authenticity so important?

Being genuine is crucial for your overall wellbeing since it promotes contentment, fulfillment, and good self-esteem. You’re more inclined to follow your passions, have confidence in yourself, and feel comfortable expressing your thoughts when your actions reflect your genuine personality.

Why do we need authentic leadership?

Stronger teamwork and improved communication are frequently encouraged by authentic leadership. As a result, there is a greater chance for open communication, achievement celebration, and early identification of problems that may be solved.


Authentic leadership is definitely a must topic for business administrators and directors. In other to establish a trusted and reliable relationship with your partners and clients.

Knowledge on authentic leadership does not only ensure the success of your business. Moreover, it also helps you create a good relationship with your employees.

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