Is Authenticity Overrated?

“To thine own self be true” from Shakespeare’s play Hamlet, is one of the most famous quotes from The Bard’s works.

The essence of these words has great staying power and meaning, especially now.

Applause for authenticity

When asked how they’d like to come across in their leadership roles, more clients than ever share that they’d like to be authentic, natural, and genuine. They want to be true to themselves – not phony, fake, put on, or overly packaged.

We coaches, of course, applaud these aspirational adjectives.

Feeling comfortable and “like yourself” can contribute to smooth, valuable, and positive interactions. Feeling inauthentic can lead to stiff delivery, gestures, and facial expressions.

Kayla, a marketing leader in biotech, was asked to speak at a town hall. She was more nervous than usual, stumbled over statistics, and was told she seemed “scripted.”

Why? Kayla was in the challenging position of not believing what she had to say to her team. Her desire to be authentic clashed with what company executives needed her to say. Quite a challenge!

The Dilemma

Communication coaches understand that solely relying on your “real self” may not always align with achieving your goals.

It’s important to stretch beyond “doing what comes naturally” in order to build your executive communication toolkit and success.

Authenticity Awareness Quiz

Answer these three questions to determine if moving beyond being authentic is a valuable goal for you.

  1. Does my authentic self always help me get the desired results in this situation?
  2. Does my authentic self always help me to build and maintain relationships?
  3. Is my current toolkit of skills consistently effective for professional growth and success?

Most motivated professionals answer No to one or more of the above questions. Terrific! That shows a desire to expand their comfort zone, add new strategies to their toolkit, and experiment with feeling “authentic in new ways.

Executive communication coaches reassure our clients that:

  • Authenticity + Building Best Practices is an ideal professional formula.
  • New behaviors will feel awkward at first. Within three to six months, they will be part of your natural self.
  • You will experience success as you expand your executive communication repertoire and, at the same time, still believe “To thine own self be true”.
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How to Motivate Others

Become a more trusted and effective leader! In this 30-minute recorded lesson, you will learn the difference between inspiration and motivation. We will introduce six proven strategies and show you the unique Motivation Matrixthat you can put to use immediately to motivate anyone. Watch it now: Spread the love

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Paraphrase When Communicating and Coaching Others

Paraphrasing is repeating in your words what you interpret someone else to be saying. Paraphrasing is a powerful approach to furthering the understanding of the other person and yourself and can significantly increase the impact of another’s comments. As coaches, we know paraphrasing is incredibly difficult because we often need to listen deeply, a skill you must purposefully cultivate. Despite appearing attentive, our minds are churning with various thoughts, beliefs, defenses, distractions, and redirections. The

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MassBioEd Course: Presenting with Persuasion, Clarity & Strength

Join Robin Golinski, Executive Communication Coach and our partner, MassBioEd on June 13, 2024 from 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM Presenting with Persuasion, Clarity & Strength provides professionals with key skills to comfortably speak in a clear and confident manner. Whether presenting internally or externally, telling your story effectively, delivering meaningful messages, being persuasive, and speaking confidently in a variety of settings takes skill development and practice. The course is taught with role-playing and exercises. “I

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