Keynote Speaker: Lead with Vulnerability


By: Jacob Morgan, Author, “Leading with Vulnerability”

Growing up, Jacob’s mom emanate emotional vulnerability, and his dad was not. His dad was more stoic. It was all about mental or physical toughness.

Lead with Vulnerability

Fleetwood Grobler, CEO of Sasol acknowledged that the company is struggling and is undergoing a hard time. I believe we can rebuild trust, so come with me in this journey and help transform our company. This statement signals leadership. Because leading with vulnerability is important so long as it’s partnered with leadership.

Admit to mistakes and show what you’ve learned so you don’t repeat the mistake again.

Purely being vulnerable is not in your best interest. You have to demonstrate you’re fixing your gaps. Not just ask for help but also propose steps to fix the problem.

A vulnerable leader is a leader who intentionally opens themselves up to the potential of emotional harm and takes action to create positive outcome. Remember:

Vulnerability + Leadership = Vulnerable Leadership

In a survey of 14,000 employees, there were 13 factors to consider as follows:

However, the more senior you become, the less you practice these attributes in leadership. The more senior you become, the less you wish to show your emotional vulnerability.

It is alarming to see how the higher you are in the hierarchy, the less vulnerable you become.

Attributes and behaviors that were beneficial to you before are no longer beneficial today. It was a badge of honor before to work as a tough boss. It was accepted and respected. However, things have changed and now as leaders have a choice. Are leaders going to adapt and change or keep to the status quo.

The more vulnerability you bring in, the greater your leaders have of being high quality. Here are some of the LOI of leading with vulnerability:

There are 8 attributes for vulnerable leaders:

1. Competence: Be good at your job

2. Self-confidence: Believe in yourself

3. Drive to do better, to be better

4. Self awareness and understanding your strengths and weaknesses

5. Self compassion: How do you talk to yourself

6. Integrity: Not just telling the truth, but the decisions you take and the decisions you say no to

7. Empathy: see things from other people’s perspectives

8. Authenticity: Be consistent with your staffs and everyone else

Find out what your base camp is for you. Find out what’s the scariest things is for you. Give yourself things to do to climb your vulnerability mountain. Build your vulnerability mountain and climb it.

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