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Authentic leaders are the change makers who drive positive change and ensure sustainable growth. Yours Truly on stage at OECD –Organization for Economic and Cooperation Development, in the session “Leading Today: Are you a Giver, a Taker, or a Matcher?”

Thanks to Yolanda Regodón, my colleague and Associate Director of Communication at IE Business School, for facilitating the conversation with Anthony Gooch, Director of OECD Forum.

What brings us together?

Angel Gurría, Secretary General of OECD, addressed this question in his opening speech at the OECD Forum: “We come from different places, times, and backgrounds. But what brings us together is the belief that we face challenges that we cannot overcome alone. We need to welcome collective action.”
I could not agree more with Mr. Gurría. We need collective action that can only be achieved when people trust our political and business leaders. However, the credibility of leadership is in crisis. Traditional models of leadership are failing to build the required trust. There is a growing cynicism about our leaders and institutions. We need leaders to look for multilateral solutions using everyone´s talent.

Who actually drive positive change and sustainable growth?

New eras require new leadership. Leaders today face highly complex problems –technical and social- that involve more and diverse stakeholders. Leading in an inclusive world today means leading diversity. However, it is indeed challenging to move forward with a shared vision, bringing people together.
Change makers are not superheroes. Humble leaders or unsung heroes are the driving force behind positive change to achieve human-center goals. We are in the middle of a leadership revolution; there has been a shift from ego-centric leaders to collaborative and authentic leaders.
People demand that their leaders be authentic, to know their strengths but also their limitations, to be true to their principles, and to behave according to a moral code. When leaders are true, employees rejoice and feel secure. This shared vitality creates innovative solutions and high performance.

What competencies do authentic leaders have?

  • There are 9 competencies behind the 3 Hs of authentic leadership that I discuss in my book, Yours Truly.
  • Heart: Authentic leaders put their heart into their business with passion, humility, and storytelling.
  • Habit: Authentic leaders make learning a habit with a growth mindset, optimism, and resilience.
  • Harmony: Authentic leaders build contexts for others to shine in with empowerment, community, and legacy.

Does it help to be an authentic leader?

This is how authentic leadership drives positive change:

  1. They provide better and collaborative solutions to highly complex problems that require more and diverse people.
  2. They create a workforce that is committed to the shared vision of the organization.
  3. They deliver sustainable growth by promoting continuous and personalized learning that is key to long-term success.
Margarita Mayo

I´m Margarita Mayo. I´ve been a Professor of Leadership and Psychology at IE Business School since 2000. Prior to that I was a Fulbright scholar at Harvard University and professor at Ivey Business School. I feel passionate about scientific dissemination, and I have more than 20 years of international experience teaching courses on soft skills, giving keynote conferences and coaching executives on leadership development and change management. Always eager to help develop the next generation of leaders.

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