Leaders: be yourself

Leaders: be yourself

Is your leader a great communicator? The key is to be true to yourself according to Kevin Murray, Chairman of The Good Relations Group and author of the Language of Leaders.

We were delighted to welcome Kevin as guest speaker for our summer series of Alumni Bites (a series of webinars and speaker events on a theme - this time it was leadership).

As communicators we know how important good leadership communication is for both internal and external audiences. But how can we help our leaders to achieve it?  One message from Kevin that really struck me is that it isn’t about carefully crafted messages; it’s about authenticity - leaders being true to themselves. This is quite a shift for some practitioners, many of us are trained to be ‘managers of the message’. Of course, nobody wants their leader standing up and saying something daft, so what we need to do is coach and counsel rather than control.

Think about the tone of voice too, make emotional connections, tell a story. It isn’t all about how many corporate messages you can squeeze into a presentation.

But what do you do when you have a leader who really just doesn’t take well to centre stage? Kevin’s advice is simple: play to their strengths. If he or she is better one-to-one, then adopt that approach.

All this and more is captured in Kevin’s book – The Language of Leaders.  It’s based on a series of interviews with senior folk and full of insights. Kevin notes how leaders list communication as one of their top three priorities; yet don’t seem to invest in it.

Effective leadership is key to successful change, internal comms and PR. Our next Alumni Bites session is on Monday 23 July. It’s a free webinar with Nick Obolensky. Find out more about Nick and his perspective here and register for the webinar here.