Executive Presence – What Is It Truly?

executive presence

Many blab about leadership executive presence and make the big mistake on focusing on the outer appearance and style. And when you go around the world you will note everyone looks at leadership differently. It is like the old saying “different strokes for different folks”.

There are a number of traits that are commonly found amongst people who are considered to have great leadership. You will note such leadership is inspiring and transformational. They have this ability to create immense impact and have a high sense of presence. In other words they:

  • Have the X-factor, confident and charismatic
  • Are not demanding (domineering/ tyrant with an ego) but commanding (worthy of a respect/ person of integrity)
  • Are people for whom you are willing to stop and listen to them when they speak (not out of fear or the title you hold)

“Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be”. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

It does not matter if they have been labelled an introvert or extrovert. Both labels have the ability to ooze great impact and presence. In other word’s they have Executive Presence.

Consider and ask yourself these question about executive presence:

  • Why would anyone want to be lead by you?
  • What are the behaviours of leaders with great presence?
  • What could you do immediately to start to live by these behaviours of great leaders?

Numerous definitions are out there on executive presence (EP). Some of these being:

  • Bates Executive Presence Index™ says it is a three-dimensional model of character, substance, and style.
  • Andrew Bryant says it the ability to project confidence and gravitas (substance) under pressure.
  • Sylvia Ann Hewlett as her book title says it all “The missing link between merit and success”

All of these are great definitions. Here is something which is even much simpler. It takes into account all cultures (eastern and western), gender, creed, caste and colour. It is a global and universal definition of executive presence:

“Executive Presence is the harmonious integration of ICE in developing and sustaining credibility.”

In other words, I.C.E. (intelligence, communication and emotional wisdom) is all about JIGRA. To expand on this definition it is about:

  •  Journey of self-leadership then leading others
  • Inner self-discovery leading to developing your outer self
  • Gratitude in all situations, no matter how tough
  • Respect and integrate both emotions and logic
  • Awakening The A.C.E – Awareness. Consciousness. Energy

It means to have grit, be brave of heart or have resilience. And it required at all levels, not just for leaders or leadership roles. It required to live one’s life with compassion, love and joy.

Global Conference Speaker, Trainer & Coach on Executive Presence – Inspiring Trust & Compassion To Achieve ROI – Delivery Experience 25+ Years | Best-Selling Author®

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