What Kind of Leader Are You?

BOOKSHave you ever given any thought to the kind of leader you are? I’ve been a student of leadership for many years, and one of the challenges I faced was trying to navigate my way through all the material.

The volume of literature is staggering. 

A recent Google search returned more than 455 million results on leadership. Amazon alone has more than 179,000 different books, videos and self-help products on leadership with more added every day.

I’ve always been interested and quite frankly, impressed with many of the studies, empirical data, perspectives and opinions on the various traits and characteristics that will make better leaders. So some years ago, I set out on a personal journey to better understand leadership and management.

Over the course of my 20+ years of searching and research, I studied management at Stanford University, I’ve been through years of formally structured programs on transformational leadership and advanced leadership development. I’ve even taken metaphysical courses and numerous personal development programs, all in the pursuit of understanding leadership and management … and you know what I’ve found? I’ve found that they’re correct! Ok, well not everything that’s offered is valid or helpful, but certainly a good amount of the literature written and lessons offered on leadership is good material. After all – someone, somewhere, found something that worked for someone, at some point and time. It’s all a matter of perspective. #Best Advice

Leadership is Personal.

Consequently over the years, as I’ve also helped coach and develop other leaders, one thing became clear. It’s that leadership and particularly, how to excel in leadership, is a very personal and individualized thing.

That’s why there’s such a preponderance of leadership material. I believe that every leader has their set of ingredients that will make them a good leader.

Taking this one step further, included in this unique set of ingredients or formula that leaders have, lies a secret sauce. When a leader’s secret sauce is identified and applied, it enables them to stand out from the crowd and be a “shiny” leader.

What is a shiny leader?

Being “shiny” comes from within. In a previous Article, I described shininess as a kind of radiance deep inside that emanates out, something that others see, feel, and are attracted to. To be more specific, “shininess” is an internal element or group of traits that exist within a person that, when uncovered and released, enables that individual to stand out from others. It’s a quality of brightness, a sparkling or brilliance, a luminous that is observed by others, yet the observation occurs at a level that is often felt more so than seen.

Shininess is an energy or vibration that’s hard to describe or put your finger on, yet you know it when it’s present. When someone is a shiny leader, they have an inner light, as if filled by sunshine. They attract others to them in a way that transcends charisma, charm, or magnetic personality.

So how can someone find this elusive shininess?

That will be the subject of my next post. But I’ll give you a hint… It starts from within.


Carly Vivian
Carly Vivian
CARLY is an expert in leadership development and organizational change management (OCM). Her mission is to reinvent how people think about change, replacing fear and inertia with clarity of direction and forward momentum. Carly loves to work with leaders and help guide them and their teams through major transitions with agility, connection, and commitment. As a leader in Slalom's Business Advisory Services practice, she leads strategic initiatives to bring new levels of transformation and change management to clients. With 20+ years of consulting experience and deep expertise in executive coaching, organization effectiveness, strategy, and team effectiveness, she has a proven track record for delivering solutions that drive growth, accelerate innovation and result in improved outcomes. Carly can be reached at [email protected]

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