For some, leadership comes naturally. These people effortlessly bend others to their will, they are born to command. ‘Here’s the strategy people, let’s go execute.’ This is the archetype of the leader as an out-in-front force of nature, bursting with charisma, alive with energy.

But the truth is, most of us aren’t like that. We are thrust into a leadership or management role, often without much preparation. And even natural leaders struggle to bring people with them all of the time. Leadership isn’t as easy as Napoleon made it look.

Fortunately there are other ways of practicing leadership that do not require the stress of reaching out to motivate and inspire others – and yet are just as powerful in their effect. This article is about one of those.

For many, leadership is about knowing the talents of the people around you and deploying those talents in the most effective manner in pursuit of the team’s goals. Fair enough.

But what if I said to you that leadership should begin by allowing your team to truly know you? What if they could read the map of your talents, understand how you channel your intelligence, how you make decisions, where you see success coming from, what your strengths are?

Wouldn’t that make it easier for others to understand you, to get behind you and support you? Of course it would.

(Conversely, if revealing yourself to others scares you, if you want to remain a mystery, stop reading now.)

In short, isn’t spreading that kind of clarity about your leadership style a big part of what leadership is all about? Damn straight it is.

It’s also an awful lot easier and less expensive to let yourself become transparent to others than spend years trying to turn yourself into Julius Caesar (and probably a lot kinder to humanity).

Leadership is a huge subject. I’m not trying to pretend that this is the beginning and end of the matter.

But to improve your leadership and influence considerably in a very short space of time, let others know your strengths. They’ll love you for it. It’ll also help you understand theirs.

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