Authentic Leadership: The Five Characteristics of Effective Leaders

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Quick Summary

Too often, leadership gets reduced to mere influence. While this is important, real leadership—leadership that creates personal and organizational leverage—is much more. In this presentation, I share the five characteristics of effective leaders. These mark those who leave a lasting legacy.

Presentation Outline

Using examples from my own experience as well as relevant case studies I explain that effective leaders share five characteristics:

I conclude with an inspirational challenge. Stop waiting for this kind of leader to show up. Decide to become the leader you always wanted to follow.

Target Audience

Individuals and organizations who want to focus on becoming and developing strong, effective leaders. I have spoken on this topic to a wide array of industries—financial advisors, publishers, business consultants, retailers, small business associations, and churches.

Possible Formats

This presentation can be delivered as a keynote or workshop, ranging from 30–60 minutes long, depending on your needs. The ideal keynote length is 45 minutes.

Intended Outcomes

  • Audience members will be inspired to become better leaders, taking their knowledge, skills, and character to the next level.
  • Audience members will understand the five marks of authentic leadership and why each of these characteristics are essential to be effective.
  • Audience members will leave with practical, actionable steps they can implement immediately.

Topic Authority

  • I led Thomas Nelson Publishers, the seventh largest book publisher in the U.S., as the Chairman and CEO for more than six years. (He served in executive leadership at Thomas Nelson for fifteen years.)
  • I led the company through the Great Recession, going through two rounds of layoffs, slashing expenses, restructuring debt, and emerging as one of the fastest-growing, most profitable publishing companies in the world.
  • I also lead an enormous online tribe. My blog is the top leadership blog in the world, with more than 300,000 visitors a month. I have written more than 450 posts on the topic of leadership.

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