What Makes Authentic Leadership?

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Introduction Since its inception over a decade ago, those in the leadership research community have worked to define what authentic leadership. The concept is still developing and therefore many different definitions have emerged. Common to each of the definitions is the notion that authentic individuals align their actions and behaviors with their core values and beliefs. Those who study the field have developed a continuum in which individuals can be thought of as either authentic or inauthentic.
A Comparison Review Authentic leadership theory is rooted in the work of positive psychology and focuses on the leader’s strengths, as opposed to short comings (Livingston & Lusin, 2009). The authentic leaders’ strong display of their
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According to Luthans and Avolio (2003), there are three main components associated with authentic leadership. The first is self-awareness. This notion can be simplified by describing self-awareness as “being yourself” and in order to do so, leaders must understand their passions and motivations (George, as cited in Livingston & Lusin, 2009). Authentic leaders rely on introspection to gain insights into their core values, identify and goals (Livingston & Lusin, 2009). One of the key arguments against the notion of self-awareness is the definitions of moral characteristics and attributes. The majority of leaders support the ideals of authentic leadership, however there are no set definitions regarding the concepts revered with authentic leadership such as “loyalty”, “fairness” and “justice” (Price, as cited in Berkovich, 2014). These definitions are fluid because individuals take on a variety of social roles (Algera & Lips-Wiersma, as cited in Berkovich, 2014). The second component required of authentic leadership is self-regulation. This process is the way in which leaders align their beliefs with their actions (Zhang et. al, 2012). Once internal standards are set, one must evaluates any discrepancies between standards and actual behaviors. Discrepancies are addressed as part of this continuous “positive feedback loop” (Zhang et. al, 2012, p. 589). This process is driven by the leader-not through any
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