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Leveraging Toltec Wisdom to Help Build Transformational Leaders and Sustainable Business

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authentic-leadership-series-june-2013By Michelle Maldonado
Associate Vice President of Corporate and Strategic Relationships, American Public University System

Leadership style is a personal and necessary expedition that often requires trial and error, introspection and guidance. In this ninth issue of the Authentic Leadership Series, I speak with American Public University System Vice President Terry Grant to discuss leadership transformation based on the four principles that define her distinctive leadership style and the culture of her high-performing enrollment management and student support organization.

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Q: How do you incorporate concepts of authenticity in your leadership style?

Terry: I don’t see myself as being different from any other person on my team. Like them, I’m just another human being trying to get my job done. I don’t believe that there has to be a pecking order. In working shoulder-to-shoulder, side-by-side, we achieve better results. That is not to suggest that this leadership style relieves me of decision-making or other responsibilities. I do have responsibility to and for my teams, but I strive to be a different kind of leader—an authentic leader. For me, authenticity in my leadership style means that I am the same person no matter where I am and that I express the same values no matter what circumstance I’m in. I don’t like to compartmentalize different facets of my life. Too many of us compartmentalize our lives. We project one persona in our civic lives, which is different from the one at work or the one at home. I used to do that, but found that it’s a lot of work and relationships to juggle. It’s neither authentic nor sustainable. I focus on living one life.

Read on to learn more about Terry’s insights on leadership style as part of the APUS Authentic Leadership Series, “The Four Agreements: Leveraging Toltec Wisdom to Help Build Transformational Leaders and Sustainable Business.”

About Michelle Maldonado:

Michelle Maldonado is the creator of The Authentic Leadership Series and serves as Associate Vice President of the Corporate and Strategic Relationships team for American Public University. She is a former practicing attorney with more than 17 years of leadership experience in strategic planning, operations and partnership development across the education, technology, and online media industries. Michelle is passionate about talent development, coaching, and mentoring of professionals to support individual growth and success. Utilizing an authentic and consultative approach, Michelle collaborates with industry organizations to form education alliances that support overall talent and institutional growth strategies. To learn more about how American Public University’s programs and services may help you, please visit: www.StudyAtAPU.com/Solutions or contact Michelle at mmaldonado@apus.edu.

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