Home » ExchangeEveryDay » It’s Time to Get Real

ExchangeEveryDay Past Issues

<< Previous Issue | View Past Issues | | Next Issue >> ExchangeEveryDay
It’s Time to Get Real
August 31, 2021
Generally by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out, and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.
-The Velveteen Rabbit (Williams, 1958)
“People want to be led by someone ‘real,’ write Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones in the Harvard Business Review.

“This is partly a reaction to the turbulent times we live in. It is also a response to the public’s widespread disenchantment with politicians and businesspeople. We all suspect that we’re being duped.
Our growing dissatisfaction with sleek, ersatz, airbrushed leadership is what makes authenticity such a desirable quality…Leaders and followers both associate authenticity with sincerity, honesty, and integrity.”

“Heart-centered leaders no longer try to cover up their ‘realness’ for fear of what others will think,” writes Nancy Rosenow in Art of Leadership: Leading Early Childhood Organizations. “They learn to stop judging any parts of themselves as ‘ugly.’ They move to a place of greater acceptance and love for themselves first, and then for everyone else in their lives.

That all sounds good, but wow, it’s not easy. It’s a process, not an event.

It was a revelation to me a few years back when I finally understood that the judgments I feared the most weren’t from others, but from myself…My greatest fear was that others would ‘find out’ about my flaws and come to the same conclusion I had – that I may not be worthy enough, perfect enough or good enough to be an effective leader. The irony is that the fear of facing my ‘realness’ kept me from creating the most real relationship with others. I wasn’t able to lead as effectively because my fears got in the way. Only when I began to risk revealing all of me was I able to move into a place where my leadership became more loving, collaborative, and yes, effective.”

The Art of Leadership
Early Childhood Organizations

Use coupon code LEADING
to get ALL Art of Leadership titles for only $19!

Leadership matters in early childhood. Leading Early Childhood Organizations provides you with practical advice from top experts on leadership in the early childhood arena. Content focuses on the skills required to lead an organization, supervise staff, and manage the organization.

Offer valid through July 22, 2022, at 11:59 pm Pacific Time.
May not be combined with any other offer.


Delivered five days a week containing news, success stories, solutions, trend reports, and much more.

What is ExchangeEveryDay?

ExchangeEveryDay is the official electronic newsletter for Exchange Press. It is delivered five days a week containing news stories, success stories, solutions, trend reports, and much more.

Comments (2)

Displaying All 2 Comments
Tiffany Peckham · September 02, 2021
Lincoln, NE, United States

Kim, thank you for the kind comment. Have a great day!

-Tiffany at Exchange

Kim Quinn · August 31, 2021
OKC, OK, United States

Thank you SO much for putting this idea out there. We don’t seem to have many managers or leaders willing to do this, not in early childhood or most other professions either. It’s the only way, though, in my experience and you are also correct that it is not easy. But so worth it!

Again, I mainly wanted to thank you!!

Post a Comment

Have an account? to submit your comment.


Your e-mail address will not be visible to other website visitors.

Check the box below, to help verify that you are not a bot. Doing so helps prevent automated programs from abusing this form.

Disclaimer: Exchange reserves the right to remove any comments at its discretion or reprint posted comments in other Exchange materials.