Most people have a work persona. There are parts of ourselves that we may not be comfortable revealing to others at work; with many of us holding back what makes us human and vulnerable in order to be seen as professional, competent and successful.
Mike Robbins is a passionate advocate for authenticity in the workplace. He is a thought leader, a sought-after speaker, and the author of four books, including his latest, Bring Your Whole Self to Work.
Mike believes authenticity is the foundation of bringing our whole selves to work. When we have the courage to be ourselves and be authentic, it both liberates us and gives others permission to do the same. It’s about leading with humility, and remembering that we’re all vulnerable, imperfect human beings doing the best we can. It encourages risk-taking, speaking up, asking for help and connecting with others in a genuine way, allowing ourselves to be truly seen.
It’s not always easy. Given the global and dynamic nature of today’s business world, sometimes we don’t feel safe enough to show up authentically all of the time.
Mike believes that when we don’t bring our whole selves to work we suffer – lack of engagement, lack of productivity, and diminished wellbeing. We aren’t able to do our best, most innovative work, and we spend and waste too much time trying to look good, fit in, and do or say the “right” thing.
For teams and organisations, this lack of psychological safety makes it difficult for the group or company to thrive and perform at their highest level. It takes commitment, intention, and courage for leaders and organisations to create environments that are conducive to authenticity and humanity.
We would be interested to hear your thoughts on leaders bringing their whole selves to work, and the difference it makes to an organisation.