Tanveer Naseer

Leadership Coach, Speaker, and Writer

What We Get Wrong About Authenticity In Leadership

Discover why authenticity in leadership is not about being the “real you”, but about understanding what your purpose and core values are.

When it comes to improving the way we lead, there’s a number of approaches that have been championed by both leadership experts and researchers looking into understanding what makes someone a successful leader.

While some concepts can be straightforward, others are more susceptible to misinterpretation and consequently, lead to approaches that weaken your ability to bring out the best in those you lead. One example of this is the idea that we need to be “more authentic” in our leadership.

Unfortunately, talk of authenticity in leadership often gives rise to the notion that leaders simply need to be ‘the real you’.

The truth, though, is that when it comes to leadership, authenticity isn’t about being the “real me”, but being true to our purpose and values that drive us [Twitter logoShare on Twitter].

It means that in every encounter, in every conversation, and in every word we speak and action we take we hold ourselves true to that vision that defines why we do what we do, as well as to those core values that serve as both our cardinal points and rudder to ensure we stay the course and not run astray.

Of course, when it comes to core values in leadership, not surprisingly the values that come up are integrity, trust, and respect. Without question, these are important values that a leader must treat as not only unshakable, but ones that should never be compromised in order to achieve our goals or vision.

However, in the context of authenticity in leadership, we need to do more than simply adhere to these core values considering how these are values that we should expect in everyone and not just in those holding leadership positions.

After all, would you willingly buy from someone who lacks integrity in how they’re willing to short-change you to increase their profit margins? Would you want to do business with someone who disrespects you or the people you care about? And would you be okay doing business with someone you don’t trust?

Of course not, which is why we need to recognize that these aren’t noble or virtuous values to hold, but the very least we should have and be doing.

But this is where our values allow us to be more authentic in our leadership as they help to Click here to continue reading »”What We Get Wrong About Authenticity In Leadership”

Leadership Biz Cafe Podcast #22 – Andy Molinsky On Stepping Outside Your Comfort Zone To Succeed

Discover the real keys for how to effectively move outside your comfort zone to develop new skills and insights that will power your success.

There’s a common saying shared often in our social media streams that you achieve success, we need to take a leap out of our comfort zone in order to access that space ‘where the magic happens’.

But is this really what we need to do to achieve success and personal fulfillment? That question serves as the starting point of my discussion on the true nature of comfort zones and learning how to grow our competencies with psychology and organizational behaviour professor Andy Molinsky.

Andy is a Professor at Brandeis University’s International Business School, with a joint appointment in the Department of Psychology. His research and writing has been featured in Harvard Business Review, Inc. Magazine, Psychology Today, the Financial Times, The Economist, and the New York Times. Andy was awarded as a Top Voice for LinkedIn for his work in education. Andy is the author of two books, including his latest, “Reach: A New Strategy to Help You Step Outside Your Comfort Zone, Rise to the Challenge, and Build Confidence”, which serves as the focus of this episode.

In this episode of my leadership podcast, Andy and I discuss the realities of moving outside our comfort zone and how we can effectively accomplish this, and over the course of our conversation, Andy shares a number of valuable insights, including:

  • What’s the real difference between between introversion and extroversion (hint: it’s now how shy or outgoing we are).
  • The five challenges we face when moving outside our comfort zone – and the ones that most of us struggle with the most.
  • Understanding the many ways that we avoid moving outside our comfort zone and how this can actually create a negative feedback loop that stifles opportunities for growth and success.
  • The three strategies successful people share in common in how they approach moving outside their comfort zone to drive their future successes.
  • The surprising reason why clarity is a key factor to our ability to succeed in moving outside our comfort zone.

I’d appreciate it if you could help your support help support future episodes of this leadership podcast by taking a minute to rate my show on Google Play, Stitcher Radio, or iTunes.

It’s worth noting that my leadership podcast was recognized by Inc. As one of “12 podcasts that will make you a better leader”. So please help me get the word out about my show.

Click on the player below to listen to the podcast: Click here to continue reading »”Leadership Biz Cafe Podcast #22 – Andy Molinsky On Stepping Outside Your Comfort Zone To Succeed”

7 Steps To Becoming A Happier, Higher-Performing Leader

Discover 7 steps that can help leaders build habits that will help them not only become higher-performing leaders, but happier ones too.

The following is a guest piece by Jennifer Moss.

From growing a successful start-up, to writing a book and speaking internationally about workplace culture, to making a solid attempt at being a decent wife and mother of three kids; I require an enormous amount of mental bandwidth. I’m sure many of you reading this blog are in the same boat.

But, my question to you is: Are you building the right habits? The kind of habits that make you happier, more emotionally intelligent? The kind of habits that build up your psychological fitness so you can emulate positive and empathetic leadership?

We tend to think that healthy habits are correlated to better eating or working out. But, what if I told you that emotional healthiness is the precursor to improved physical health and higher performance at work and in life. Good mental health habits free up space in the conscious decision-making area of the brain so you better attend to other priorities. As a leader, this is enormously helpful.

To ensure I formed new and improved current leadership habits, I developed a standard for building habits that stick. The P.E.R.S.I.S.T. model is based on existing research correlated to well-being and performance. This model continues to support my personal development routine and hopefully, it can support your efforts as well: Click here to continue reading »”7 Steps To Becoming A Happier, Higher-Performing Leader”

5 Summer Books That Will Make You A Better Leader

Five leadership books worth reading over the summer break in order to learn how to become more successful at leading others.

As a leadership writer, I get asked from time to time to share a list of my favourite leadership books; books that I found to be the most informative either for those new to leadership, or for those looking for new insights on how they can build on their existing leadership skills.

With summer now in full-swing and with many people now gearing up to take their much-needed summer vacation break, I thought it’d be fun to share five of my favourite leadership books, along with my own leadership insights on how we can be the kind of leader our employees need us to be:

1. “Multipliers – How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter” by Liz Wiseman with Greg McKeown

Have you ever worked for a boss who made you feel like you did your best work? What was it about their leadership that allowed them to motivate you to bring your best efforts to the job? That’s the question Liz Wiseman and Greg McKeown answer in this book.

Their basic premise is that successful leaders – who they call “Multipliers” – view intelligence as something that can be expanded, as opposed to being a fixed and limited resource. Based on their own research, Wiseman and McKeown share actionable steps to help readers transform into leaders who tap into the full potential of every employee under their care.

One of my favourite insights from their book – “Multipliers understand that people love to contribute their genius. If they put in the effort to figure out someone’s genius, they have opened a pathway for that person to contribute.”

This idea aligns with one of the leadership insights I’ve written about numerous times here on my leadership blog:

Leadership is not about you; it’s about how you’re empowering those you lead to succeed and thrive [Twitter logoShare on Twitter].

Click here to buy “Multipliers – How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter” on Amazon and Amazon.ca.

2. “The Progress Principle – Using Small Wins To Ignite Joy, Engagement, and Creativity at Work” by Teresa Amabile and Steven Kramer

One of the common challenges leaders everywhere face is how do we empower people to be driven to deliver their best, and which actions of ours are causing people to lose their motivation?

In “The Progress Principle”, Harvard professor Teresa Amabile and psychologist Steven Kramer reveal that the key to understanding this is Click here to continue reading »”5 Summer Books That Will Make You A Better Leader”

What Happened To Trust And Integrity In Today’s Organizations?

Trust and integrity seem to be in decline in many organizations today. Here's a revealing look at why they are so critical to leadership and organizational success.

Over the past several weeks, there has been a recurring theme in the news of organizations being caught at their worst and with it, how often leaders drop the ball in owning up to these failures incurred by those they lead.

While the most talked-about examples have been Pepsi’s tone-deaf commercial and United Airlines’ abhorrent treatment of one of their passengers, I want to share the story of another organization’s colossal misstep in order to illustrate how the disconnect leaders engender between an organization’s efforts and those they are meant to serve can have a far greater and deleterious impact than we might realize.

Perhaps best known internationally as the creator of the Ski-Doo snowmobile and Sea-Doo personal watercraft, here in the province of Quebec, Bombardier holds a storied and revered place as a shining example of Quebecois entrepreneurship, business acumen, and high-tech talent.

Or at least they did until it was revealed that the company had given its executives a 50% pay hike after laying off 11 000 employees and asking for over $1 billion in bailout funds from the provincial and federal government in order to help keep them afloat.

Since the news broke, Bombardier’s image in the province has taken a serious hit and the company has been subject to numerous protests outside their headquarters here in Montreal. Bombardier has since attempted to save face by announcing that they would defer almost half of the proposed executive compensation until 2020.

But by then it was too late as even now, more than half of Quebecers say they have a negative impression of this once well-regarded company, a reality that will not only impact their ability to garner public funds in the future, but also the way their employees view their organization and their contributions to it.

Now, in the case of Pepsi and United Airlines, the typical focus tends to be on them being examples of failures in crisis communication. And yet, while these assessments are correct, they also create a false impression that these incidents are temporal in nature, evoking the old adage of how time heals all wounds.

But the real lesson we should be taking from each of these examples is not simply what and how we communicate following a clear violation of what we claim to be our organization’s vision and/or values, but of how this kind of disconnect in our leadership can irreparably damage the trust we’ve earned – not just with our customer base, but amongst those we have the responsibility to lead.

Through the examples of Pepsi, United Airlines, and Bombardier, we not only see first-hand what happens when we fail to honour what we claim to stand for, but also an important truth about the nature of trust in leadership. Namely, that trust is not a transitory value, but should serve as an unyielding cardinal point in your leadership [Twitter logoShare on Twitter].

It’s a fact that both the CEO at United Airlines and Bombardier have failed to understand given how their first response in the face of public outrage over what happened under their watch was to sidestep any real responsibility and in the case of Bombardier, go so far as to justify it as being the norm.

What both of these leaders have clearly failed to learn is that trust is more than a noble virtue – it’s a promise we make to others that we’ll do them no harm [Twitter logoShare on Twitter].

Of course, while these examples demonstrate just how quickly leaders can Click here to continue reading »”What Happened To Trust And Integrity In Today’s Organizations?”

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