Written by

Bernard Marr

Bernard Marr is a world-renowned futurist, influencer and thought leader in the fields of business and technology, with a passion for using technology for the good of humanity. He is a best-selling author of 20 books, writes a regular column for Forbes and advises and coaches many of the world’s best-known organisations. He has over 2 million social media followers, 1 million newsletter subscribers and was ranked by LinkedIn as one of the top 5 business influencers in the world and the No 1 influencer in the UK.

Bernard’s latest book is ‘Business Trends in Practice: The 25+ Trends That Are Redefining Organisations’

View Latest Book

Follow Me

Bernard Marr ist ein weltbekannter Futurist, Influencer und Vordenker in den Bereichen Wirtschaft und Technologie mit einer Leidenschaft für den Einsatz von Technologie zum Wohle der Menschheit. Er ist Bestsellerautor von 20 Büchern, schreibt eine regelmäßige Kolumne für Forbes und berät und coacht viele der weltweit bekanntesten Organisationen. Er hat über 2 Millionen Social-Media-Follower, 1 Million Newsletter-Abonnenten und wurde von LinkedIn als einer der Top-5-Business-Influencer der Welt und von Xing als Top Mind 2021 ausgezeichnet.

Bernards neueste Bücher sind ‘Künstliche Intelligenz im Unternehmen: Innovative Anwendungen in 50 Erfolgreichen Unternehmen’

View Latest Book

Follow Me

What Are the Qualities of an Authentic Leader?

6 April 2022

Customers are seeking meaningful connections with brands, and employees want real relationships with their leaders. Read on to find out the qualities of a truly authentic leader in today’s world.

What Are the Qualities of an Authentic Leader? | Bernard Marr

In an era where brands and businesses are struggling to earn and retain the trust of their customers, authenticity is a good way to differentiate from competitors and build meaningful connections.

Authentic leaders “keep it real” by fostering human connections and focusing on building long-term trust.

So what are the attributes of an authentic leader, and what can we do to cultivate those characteristics in ourselves?

Quality 1: Transparency

One of the biggest things that inspires trust is transparency. Authentic leaders strive to be open with customers and employees alike. They are not only open about their values and process, but also about their technology and how they’re using it.

Quality 2: Respectfulness

Authentic leaders show respect for people, cultures, and most critically, the environment. They lead with empathy, recognizing the humanness in other people. They also strive to incorporate conscious consumption and sustainable operations into their companies.

Quality 3: Bringing Your Whole Self

Truly authentic leaders shun corporate jargon and talk to employees, customers, and competitors like human beings. When leaders drop their guard and aren’t afraid to show their mistakes and shortcomings, it allows humility and vulnerability to shine through – and that builds trust.

The image that an authentic leader projects in public shouldn’t be drastically different from how they are when they’re in private. Authentic leaders bring their whole selves to work, not two separate personas (one work, and one non-work). It also means they use social media authentically, in their own voice rather than one that is managed by a corporate communications team.

Quality 4: Willingness to stand up for important issues

Most consumers these days are belief-driven, and their values have a big impact on their buying decisions. We want our leaders to believe in the same things we do.

Authentic leaders have a strong moral and ethical compass, and they take a stance on issues like LGBTQ rights, gun control, or calling out racism. They are expected to stand up for their beliefs.

Quality 5: Reliability

Consumers and employees need to know they can count on leaders to provide great service and consistency. Reliability must be built into every step leaders make.

A Powerful Example of Authentic Leadership

Paypal CEO Dan Schulman uses social media to support social justice causes and highlight issues he feels strongly about. For example, he uses his platform to speak about his support for Black Lives Matter. Paypal also followed up his public support on social media with a $530 million pledge to black-owned businesses.

Schulman once said, “The people who argue that profit and purpose are two separate things, I think don’t really understand that they don’t work against each other.”

Business Trends In Practice | Bernard Marr
Business Trends In Practice | Bernard Marr

Related Articles

The 5 Biggest Business Trends In 2023 Everyone Must Get Ready For Now

Businesses have faced huge challenges and have undergone an incredible amount of change over the past few years, and this won’t slow down in 2023.[...]

The Top 11 Virtual Networking Tips To Boost Your Career

But in a post-pandemic world where nearly all of our networking is done online, what are the best ways to “meet” new people and build those connections?[...]

The Top 10 Reasons Why Businesses Will Fail Over The Next 10 Years

Fifty percent of the Fortune 500 companies that existed 20 years ago have disappeared, and the life expectancy of multinational companies is limited and shrinking[...]

13 Easy Steps To Improve Your Critical Thinking Skills

With the sheer volume of information that we’re bombarded with on a daily basis – and with the pervasiveness of fake news and social media bubbles[...]

The Most In-Demand Technical Skills – And How To Develop Them

Think of technical skills, and you probably imagine something related to IT or technology – data science, maybe, or computer programming.[...]

The democratization of business funding: Why every business should be aware of new forms of funding

No doubt about it, businesses need money to grow. While, traditionally, this money would come from a loan or selling equity stakes in the business, today's organizations can benefit from alternative funding platforms.[...]

Stay up-to-date

  • Get updates straight to your inbox
  • Join my 1 million newsletter subscribers
  • Never miss any new content

Social Media

Yearly Views


View Podcasts