Recently I saw a senior executive cry as she uncovered something that had been hidden from her understanding of herself. An intimate, poignant moment of vulnerability whilst with her team. I saw it as strength, a moment of courage that opened up trust in the relationship with her team in a way that a display of competence never could.
We need to redefine strength in the context of leadership. Our current view of strong leadership is one that is synonymous with forceful, powerful, tough, unyielding, and tenacious behaviour. Other words that come to mind when we think of something being strong include rigid, unyielding, immovable and impermeable.
This is where our leadership problem lies. Our conception of leadership, especially strong leadership is one that does not easily contemplate vulnerability. We expect our leaders to have their s