Leading Out Loud: A Guide for Engaging Others in Creating the Future by Terry Pearce

Pete Hammett

Dr. Pete Hammett, Visiting Professor, Purdue University Center for Food and Agricultural Business

Communicating effectively is a critical competency for anyone who interacts with people. The ability to express ideas succinctly and clearly is foundational to convince others to consider a different point of view and to keep appropriate people informed of progress. Clarity, persuasiveness, enthusiasm and conviction are all relevant factors.

Leadership presence is the ability to supercharge communication skills to bridge the gap between getting people to ‘do things’ and inspiring people to ‘become something’. Leadership presence can be defined as the ability of a leader to inspire people to look inward and connect their business messages with employee experiences and what they deeply believe in and care about. This builds trustworthiness to create shared purpose and engage the hearts and minds of others, as well as enables leaders to lead across boundaries by earning employee commitment (versus compliance) and providing meaning that fuels maximum contribution.

As humans, we leverage our communication skills to influence, we persuade to gain compliance and we draw on our leadership presence to inspire and motivate to achieve commitment. Leadership presence builds on a leader’s communication skills to boost their organizational impact by enabling their ability to authentically connect and engage their people.

The 5 key disciplines of leadership presence are:

  • Cultivate deep self-awareness
  • Build authentic rapport and connection with others
  • Demonstrate credibility
  • Exhibit grace and resilience under pressure
  • Communicate with heart

My favorite insight from Leading Out Loud was: “Managers are evaluated by what they know and the results they achieve. Leaders are followed because of their ability to articulate who they are and what they stand for.”

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