We launched 2017 by participating in the Corporate Athlete Program at the Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute. Our instructor is an Olympic medalist and Harvard MBA who inspired us to reflect on the power of aligning your leadership voice.
What is your leadership voice? This is essential to effective leadership because each leader is unique and has their own way to lead. There are leadership basics that matter, but your leadership voice is the signature way that you lead.
Great leadership is elusive to define. Think about Steve Jobs and Bill Gates. Both men were leaders. Both men built a successful technology company. Who they were as human beings and how they led was radically different. Both leadership approaches delivered excellent outcome. Was one leadership approach better than the other?
There is no one size fits all leadership, there is your signature leadership voice. The three dimensions to your leadership voice are:
- Inside Voice – this is the soundtrack in your head. Your inside voice is a powerful force that you will never escape. What is it saying? Does the message serve and support you or does it make you doubt yourself? A strong positive inner voice is an essential dimension of your leadership voice.
- Outside Voice – what do you say? What are the words, stories and statements that you spread? Your outside voice is what people hear. Your outside voice is one way that people learn about your leadership. Your outside voice sets the standard for the third dimension of your leadership voice.
- Actions – Your actions are what people see. This is where you walk the talk of your outer voice. Your actions are the measure of your leadership. Actions are how people really experience you as a leader. You know the sage statement, “actions speak louder than words.” When words and actions do not match, the lack of alignment reduces your trustworthiness, authenticity and respect.
Personal leadership alignment means that each dimension of your leadership voice is congruent with each other and with your purpose. Your personal purpose when amplified through your inner voice, outer voice and actions will resonate as authentic and create a lasting impact.
We suggest an inventory of each dimension of your leadership voice. Where is the connection and where are the gaps? The greater your congruence, the greater your leadership effectiveness.
To further explore this, check out the Rebel Leader’s Field Guide to Your Leadership Voice.