Bagger Vance: Yep… Inside each and every one of us is one true authentic swing… Somethin’ we was born with… Somethin’ that’s ours and ours alone… Somethin’ that can’t be taught to ya or learned… Somethin’ that got to be remembered… Over time the world can, rob us of that swing… It get buried inside us under all our wouldas and couldas and shouldas… Some folk even forget what their swing was like…

Now that’s an excellent lesson for leaders.  It’s not about how charismatic you are.  It’s not about a list of 5 attributes or characteristics to learn and master.  Instead, we need to acknowledge our true authentic swing and if we listen to it that is when we are all capable of being leaders.  Too often people think they have to act a certain way or follow some book they just read in order to become an effective leader.  The irony is we have the ability to be a leader already if we just trust in what we’ve already been given.  The uniqueness inside each one of us gives us the ability to be leaders.

People who fail at leadership, more often than not, fail because they are not authentic.  They try to pretend they are something they never were and will never be able to be.  People are very good at picking out frauds. A person who is most comfortable with an autocratic approach to leadership should not try to pretend to be a participative leader and vice versa.  Successful leaders embrace their authentic leadership style and accept that their style will not appeal to all followers. Authentic leaders understand that they cannot be all things to all people. Instead, they embrace who they are and are transparent in the way they act. Less than honest leaders instead start with the ulterior motive of getting followers at all costs including the loss of themselves.  Over time they become someone they can’t even recognize in the mirror. And in the end, as Bagger states, the ability to lead gets buried under the regret of not listening to the voice inside of us that knows us best.

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