5 ways to be an authentic leader

In 2020, authentic leadership is more important than ever before – people can smell bullsh*t a mile away and they’re adverse to it.

Employees and customers are gravitating towards companies and leaders with a clear sense of purpose and direction. So it’s time to stop whatever it is you’re doing right now! We’re going to explain exactly why you need to pay attention to authenticity for the future success of your business, and how you can be an authentic leader.

The concept of authentic leadership has huge benefits for business – it boosts organisational performance by 40%, improves reputation and social license and secures the long-term viability of your enterprise. Everyone wants all of this, right? Well, there’s more…

Employees are happier, more comfortable, and more productive when they feel like they know their leaders, and that their leaders have the best interests of all of their stakeholders at heart.

True authentic leadership is when leaders act as their true selves at work and they have a shared purpose with their organisation and its people. Authentic leaders allow themselves to connect with their employees and have the long-term goals of their organisation as a guiding principle.

‘Fake it until you make it’ works because you employ it for a short time, but at some point, you need to genuinely be who you are.

My top 5 ways to be an authentic leader in your business:

    • Know your strengths – If you know what you’re good at, you can work to hone them to be better at what comes naturally to you. For your weaknesses, you can strive to improve them and have someone back you up on that. For example, if you’re not a great negotiator, you can bring a team member who is great to your negotiation sessions, while working on your own skills. This doesn’t get you out of difficult conversations because you’re not good at them. No one likes it and you can’t use this as an excuse!
    • Be clear about who you are – Communicate your beliefs and what you stand for, let people opt in and out of your leadership as they inevitably will if there’s a clash in belief or style. People want to follow someone who they believe in.
    • Trust and loyalty are key – Authenticity builds trust and trust builds organisational and customer loyalty. Just like any relationship outside of the workplace, without trust and loyalty, you don’t have anything. So these are essential ingredients for workplace relationships and are important for authentic leadership.
    • Know your values – You can’t authentically be a leader if you don’t know what you stand for – if you know your values, you know the standards you will hold people to and you can back those standards with a clear why.

Are you looking to evolve your leadership skills and understand how to implement the concept of authentic leadership in your business?

We have assembled inspiring luminaries alongside Australia’s top CEOs and MDs to help you develop your leadership through authenticity, openness, and trust. Back for its fifth year on 17-20 March, the Authentic Leadership Summit 2020 is not to be missed. Tickets are selling fast, get yours here.

4 tips for setting individual KPIs for your team

Setting individual KPIs for each of your employees is probably one of the most important things you can do in your business. But it doesn’t end there – there’s so much more to KPIs with just setting them!

KPIs are absolutely essential to driving business results, improving employee satisfaction and reducing employee turnover. All of these are pretty important, right? Obviously should be top priorities. After all, you want your team to be motivated and to feel empowered to make a real difference in their career and in their workplace, for the wider world.

Without clear, concise and constructive KPIs, employees can be left feeling a lack of purpose and direction not just within company, but also in their career journey. You want to steer away from this at all costs!

As a manager or business owner, it is your responsibility to ensure you have an effective KPI system for employees. But how exactly do you do it?

My top 4 tips for setting individual KPIs for your team:

  • Set stretch KPIs. If your employee wants to move up in the business, their KPIs should be stretch i.e. difficult to achieve, but it should also be made clear that just passing isn’t enough – exceeding is where you need them to be.
  • Think about what needs to be done. What does the company need to achieve in order to get it here you want it to go, and how will the input of individuals affect that? For example, if you want an extra $100,000 in revenue from your team, you then need to work back from that number. How many calls do they do now to get that number? How many extra would they make? Emails to send out? Whatever goal is the KPI or action the staff member has to take must to correspond accordingly.
  • Performance measurement and follow up is essential. How do you measure/track performance and how do you feed it back to people? Performance metrics should be visible and clear where everyone can see them and know where they sit against others of the same position. It can either be a great motivator or a real kick in the face as to where they think their performance is at.
  • Seek feedback from your employee on what their goals are and what they want to achieve. If that’s a promotion or a sideways step – their KPIs need to align with both what the organisation needs and where they want to go, what they want to be.

Would you like to learn how to create a culture of high-performance and authenticity, and how you can best support, engage and empower your people to succeed? Back for its fifth year, the Authentic Leadership Summit 2020 teaches you how to lead with greater purpose in the contemporary business climate. Early bird rates end in 7 days, so now is the time to get your tickets. Register here.

How To Set SMART Goals For 2020

It’s that time of year again when we all evaluate every area of our lives and think about what we want to achieve in the year to come. From career to health, family life to finances, many people daydream about what they want to do and hope it will magically happen or come to them, but that’s very far from the truth.

The only way to make all your dreams for the year come true is to set SMART goals for 2020. Not just any goals, they need to be SMART. If you want something, you have to go out and chase it! You need to be clear on exactly what it is you want to achieve, be able to measure it, work out whether it’s achievable and realistic, and put a time frame on it.

You have to make a plan and make it happen. You only get out what you put in, and if your dreams were easy everyone would be doing it, wouldn’t they?

So, the first step for working towards your goals for 2020 is to break down your dreams into goals. Start now, grab a pen and paper. Let’s write SMART goals together.

What are SMART goals?

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Realistic
  • Time framed

Start with a list of everything you want to achieve in the year, let your mind go wild!

Once you’ve workshopped some ideas, you can start with the first criteria – specific. Let’s take a goal that 98% of people want to do at the start of the year – ‘get healthy’. Having a goal to ‘get healthy’ is not specific. What does this mean? Is it weight loss, is it muscle tone, is it eating more vegetables?

Let’s assume it is weight loss. Specifically, how much? You have to put a number on it. Same for muscle tone, or even eating better. 10kgs? 20% more muscle? 5 healthy dinners a week?

From here, we take the next criteria – measurable – can you measure your goal? If it’s specific you should be able to measure it – any of the examples above can be measured and tracked. That’s what you want, something that makes it very clear to know whether you’ve achieved your goal or not.

Is it achievable? Did you say you want to lose 30kgs by March 31? Now, this probably isn’t achievable without drastically restricting your life or making massive changes and it’s tied to the next step, which is realistic. Given how you run your life now, considering all lifestyle factors and knowing we all only have 24 hours in a day, can you achieve what you have set out to do in the timeframe available?

And that’s how we arrive at the last criteria – time framed. You probably can lose 5kgs by March 31. That’s probably realistic and achievable, but not 30kg!

If you take all of your goals on your list from all areas of life and apply these criteria to it, you should come up with a few that you can commit to achieving. Or even one. One is better than none!

You should keep track of your efforts. It will be easier to stick to your goals if you can both see what you are doing and visibly recording the results. Seeing yourself get some small wins can be amazing for motivation! Tell someone about them – verbal commitment is hard to break, and we are social animals – social proof can help you stick to and achieve your goals.

If your goal is career orientated, say getting a promotion, setting and tracing your goals can help prove that you’re worth it. You can take your goal tracker into your next performance review. Metrics are hard to argue against, especially if they have proven results. They show initiative and commitment, what employer doesn’t want to see that?

Well there you have it, my top tips on how to set SMART goals for 2020. I wish you all the best with your goal setting and I hope you enjoy the process!

If you’d like to learn more about career goal setting, The Empowered Woman is the event for you! To be held in Sydney on March 26, you’ll learn how to break down your career goals into achievable steps and gain the tools to support your journey to the job from Australia leading businesswoman. Tickets for this one-day event will sell out quickly, so don’t miss out. Get your tickets today!