Regular readers of this blog will be aware of my interest in authenticity, and my advocacy of an authentic style of leadership.
I was therefore intrigued to hear Sir Terry Leahy, formerly of Tesco, on the Andrew Marr Show, on BBC1 this morning. Speaking about his new book, Management in Ten Words, when asked by Marr to single out the one most important word, Sir Terry immediately chose “truth”, which comes first in the book. (Movie trivia: in John Boorman's Excalibur, when King Arthur asks Merlin to identify the single most important quality in a knight, the wizard replies "truth".)
Of course, authenticity is about deeds rather than words – it’s not just about being (i.e., believing yourself to be) authentic, it’s about demonstrating it to others by your actions. I don’t think anyone would doubt Sir Terry walked the talk, and I look forward to his book with interest.
Those ten words in full are: truth, loyalty, courage, values, act, balance, simple, lean, compete, trust.