In today’s business world there are so many competing challenges placed upon leaders. Balancing stakeholder interest, financial responsibility, customer expectations and workforce diversity requires leadership intelligence.
Leadership Intelligence is the ability to create authenticity by assessing behavioral cues, exercising emotional self-awareness, engendering trust through relationship building and preserving core values with ethical decision-making. Authentic leaders are highly regarded by employees as being trustworthy and dependable. Their actions are consistent with their words.
Having studied the tendencies of high-performing executives of major Fortune 500 Companies, the ability to sustain elevated levels of professional success is the result of authenticity. A focused, even intentional commitment to lead with a values-based mindset.
Top performing leaders demonstrate a deeper understanding of their own strengths. It is the innate ability to connect with the inner-self that annunciates their personal influence in the role as leader. But the question that begs to be answered is, “How is authentic leadership created?”
With careful consideration directed to the existing business challenges and anticipating future leadership barriers, authenticity is adapted from five primary intelligence models – Behavioral Intelligence, Emotional Intelligence, Relational Intelligence, Ethical Intelligence, and Spiritual Intelligence. Where the principles of each intelligence model overlap authentic leadership is realized.
Let us examined each in more detail.
Behavioral Intelligence is the ability intuitively assess behavioral cues for predicting future behaviors through an individual capacity to observe, influence and engage with others. A leader with a high BQ rating can anticipate employee behaviors more readily. This enables them to be proactive in managing workforce issues. Equally, behavioral intelligence equips leaders with the tools necessary to drive employee performance, source and select top talent, align team members for high performing teams, and add meaning to work by effectively communicating business objectives.
Relational Intelligence is the ability to understand, diagnose, and promote healthy relationships through effective interpersonal skills. Leaders who possess a high RQ rating view employee relationships as vital to organizational success. Human capital is not a means to an end but each relationship is a top priority. Demonstrating relational intelligence means actively investing in employee development through one-on-one coaching and mentoring. A leader strives to meet team members where they are, leveraging situational leadership principles to effectively maximize interpersonal skills for cultivating productive authentic relationships. The well-being of the workforce is more important than the bottom-line.
Emotional Intelligence is the ability to control one’s own emotions to influence the emotions of others. Daniel Goleman defines EQ as the ability to identify emotions, harness emotions for critical thinking, regulate emotions and demonstrate empathy towards others. Emotional intelligence is the internal harmony that drives responses in high stress situations enabling leaders to make sound decisions, communicate effectively and fully engage with their direct reports. Leaders with a high EQ rating are more successful at motivating employees to be self-managed and remain goal-oriented for optimizing business results.
Ethical Intelligence is the ability to align priorities through business architecture which creates optimal relationships with employees rooted in honesty, authenticity, respect, self-forgetfulness, and trust. True leadership influence is derived from personal power where ethical considerations remain a top priority. Leaders who exhibit mastery over ethical intelligence display moral courage even when faced with having to make unpopular decisions. A leader with a high EIQ rating engenders trust from their followers making it possible to stimulate support for an organization’s vision, mission and values. They are highly successful change agents driving organizational change initiatives with minimal resistance.
Spiritual Intelligence is the ability to cultivate authentic disciplines by connecting with the inner-self. A leader with a high SQ rating exercises wisdom through a vertical relationship with a higher power that advances their influences on the external world. Spiritual Intelligence guides relationships, influences work ethic, affects value-based decisions, directs ethical behavior, and determines strength of character — by a deepening connection with one’s internal world which impacts how they lead others. Next to emotional intelligence there is no greater source for establishing authenticity then through a conviction to spiritual intelligence.
To this end, the interdependence of each intelligence model creates the necessary framework for developing leadership intelligence. Within this framework are the core competencies that breathe life into a leader who is authentic. To lead into the future we will need more authentic leaders.
If the concepts set forth in this article intrigue you then please contact us at gracecovenantconsulting.com. Our new ASCEND® Leadership Development Program creates an engaging educational experience based upon the blending of these intelligence models.