Get a Grip on the Power of Identity

When the grandchildren were little, I turned all the lights off and said, “Let’s play hide and seek with flash lights.” I’m the grandfather who rubbed growing powder on kids and they instantly grew about half an inch (.2 cm). I chose to be the whacky poppi.

Leadership quote: Identity drives behavior. Image of a person on a scooter.

Identity drives behavior:

We allow powerful people to interrupt and talk down to us. We expect authorities to provide answers and give directions.

When authoritative leaders ask questions, team members feel uncomfortable. They think, “You know what you want, just tell us.” They don’t want to give answers to the person who is designated as the answer person.

Self-perception drives self-expression:

The way you identify your role defines success. Parents feel responsible to provide. When your role is protector you become a control freak. When you identify as a leader who develops others you coach more and give direction less.

Choose your Identity:

I chose my poppi identity. We choose our leadership identity. You might choose to be an encouraging leader. That choice influences the nature of your interactions. You set yourself on a path when you choose to be a results-driven leader. You have a mental image of a leader who gets results and you conform your behaviors to that image.

Align the identity you choose with your personality, talents, abilities, and knowledge. Most importantly, align your identity with your vision of your best self.

Authentic leadership begins when identity drives behavior. Who you perceive yourself to be finds expression in what you do.

When you ask yourself, “What kind of leader do you aspire to become?” you’re asking a deeper question. “Who do you aspire to become?” Don’t simply be yourself. Become your best self.

What blocks people from becoming their best self?

How to we become authentic?

Still curious:

Self-Perception Determines How You Lead

4 Tools for Self-Reflection Every Leader Needs

What Is Authentic Leadership?