Often the most highly valued character traits of leaders, in fact of any person, are listed as authenticity, sincerity, vulnerability, transparency, or integrity. These are descriptors of the type of person that draws others into relationship. They can be trusted as a safe person. WYSIWYG – what you see is what you get. People without these sorts of character traits might be better kept at a bit of distance because they cannot be fully trusted.
Another word describing a person with these sorts of character traits is “genuine.” Dr. Travis Bradberry, the author of Emotional Intelligence 2.0, wrote an article titled 12 Habits of Genuine People describing such genuine people. Genuine people are self-aware, self-confident, and comfortable in their own skin. They are also humble, respecting and valuing others. Here are the 12 habits that Dr. Bradberry used to describe genuine people in case you don’t have time to read the full article:
- Genuine people don’t try to make people like them. Genuine people are who they are. They know that some people will like them, and some won’t. And they’re okay with that.
- They don’t pass judgment. Genuine people are open-minded, which makes them approachable and interesting to others.
- They forge their own paths. Genuine people don’t derive their sense of pleasure and satisfaction from the opinions of others.
- They are generous They want you to do well more than anything else because they’re team players and they’re confident enough to never worry that your success might make them look bad. In fact, they believe that your success is their success.
- They treat EVERYONE with respect. Genuine people treat everyone with respect because they believe they’re no better than anyone else.
- They aren’t motivated by material things. Genuine people don’t need shiny, fancy stuff in order to feel good. Their happiness comes from within and from relationships with those around them.
- They are trustworthy. You know that if they say something, it’s because they believe it to be true.
- They are thick-skinned. Genuine people have a strong enough sense of self that they don’t go around seeing offense that isn’t there.
- They put away their phones. Genuine people create connection and find depth even in short, everyday conversations. Their genuine interest in other people makes it easy for them to ask good questions and relate what they’re told to other important facets of the speaker’s life.
- They aren’t driven by ego. Genuine people don’t make decisions based on their egos because they don’t need the admiration of others in order to feel good about themselves. Likewise, they don’t seek the limelight or try to take credit for other people’s accomplishments.
- They aren’t hypocrites. Genuine people practice what they preach. They don’t tell you to do one thing and then do the opposite themselves. That’s largely due to their self-awareness.
- They don’t brag. They’re confident in their accomplishments, but they also realize that when you truly do something that matters, it stands on its own merits, regardless of how many people notice or appreciate it.
See the full article for a further development of these 12 traits of genuine people.