True Leaders

A film project exploring authenticity and ethics in leadership

I’m making a film exploring authenticity and ethics in leadership. I’m currently looking for subjects – highly effective leaders who are inspired by this theme to share their experience and wisdom. I want to include leaders in a wide range of settings – private and public sector organisations, not-for-profits, and community groups. So if you’re interested in featuring, please get in touch using the form below.

Why authenticity and ethics in leadership?

In the past decade ‘authentic leadership’ and ‘ethical leadership’ have rapidly been gaining traction as sustainable and responsible leadership models in the context of our current social and environmental

challenges. A deeper investigation into these models reveals strong links and overlaps between them. 

‘Authentic leadership’ covers a wide range of personal and interpersonal skills, capacities and attitudes – including self-awareness, openness, integrity, psychological resilience and emotional intelligence. At the core is the idea that effective leaders know themselves and their values deeply, and have the courage to be true to that ‘authentic’ self. They lead from their strengths and true sources of inspiration, with a deeply-rooted yet unshowy self-confidence, rather than putting on a false ‘front’ in an attempt to live up to unrealistic leadership ideals.

 

‘Ethical leadership’ is rooted in the idea that the leader should make decisions based on what is ‘right’ and in the best interests of others and wider society, even when this may lead to short-term unpopularity or lower profits. So the ethical leader is fair, respectful, trustworthy, rooted in strong values, and puts others’ interests above their narrow career goals.

 

Some leadership theorists argue that leaders cannot be truly authentic if they are not also ethical, and vice versa. When a leader is 'authentic' in the ways described above, they will unavoidably come to reflect deeply on the ethical responsibilities their organisation has to their employees, customers, suppliers and society at large. And in order to respond wisely to such ethical considerations, a leader needs to have developed the deep awareness of self and others that is integral to authenticity. I happen to hold to this view, and I’d like to speak to leaders who feel inspired to share their thoughts and experiences on this topic.​

How I’ll make the work

I’ll be filming short interviews and editing these into one combined film, which brings in my own observations and conclusions from what people have said. The finished work will be shown on my website, and through other websites and channels.

What's in it for you

If you’re selected to be a subject, you'll be featuring a film that will hopefully add to collective wisdom about authenticity and ethics in leadership, and generate media attention in the process. In addition, I'll provide you with your individual filmed interview to use as you wish (e.g. to show on your own website, for promotional or other purposes). 

About me

As a leadership & executive coach and trainer, I specialise in helping leaders and teams to stay resilient, inspired and connected – in the face of complex pressures and demands. My distinctive mindfulness-based approach enables people to access deeper resources of clarity, wellbeing and resolve for meeting tough challenges with ease and enjoyment. More info here.

Why I’m doing this

To be totally transparent about my motivations, I’m doing this project for two main reasons:

1) Professional: I want this project to contribute to collective wisdom around authenticity and ethics in leadership. I also hope it may generate more interest in my particular approach to leadership development.

2) Personal: Outside working life, I love having a creative project to get my teeth into! I recently completed a multimedia project that celebrated some of my closest friends, through films, portraits and writing (friendsintheframe.com)

 

Interested? Then get in touch!

If you’re interested in being a subject then please fill out the form below. I’ll be selecting my subjects on a wide range of criteria, so please just fill in the answers as best you can. If I select you, I’ll fix up a date with you for a short interview – and I’ll help you prepare for that by sending you in advance the full list of interview questions.

Application form for 'True Leaders' film project