To me authenticity is absolutely crucial to leadership. I also realize that it isn’t.
It isn’t because we have many people that lead in our politics, our organizations, and in our churches that just aren’t real. They put on a facade that things are going great, but really they suck. They tell you we are making money, but really we’re losing tons of it. They tell you the organization is struggling, but are taking a larger and larger salary. They tell you that the promotion is near, but only to keep you hooked. Authenticity isn’t always a priority among leaders, and I think that sucks.
To be a leader worth following you must be authentic. You must tell people how it is. You must be brutally honest when you don’t like something, and encouraging when you do. I am thankful to serve under a leader that is known for being real. He shares struggles and frustrations, and doesn’t sugar coat things to trick people into thinking things are going better than reality.