The Authentic Leader: Using the Meisner Technique for Embracing the Values of Truthful Leadership

The Authentic Leader: Using the Meisner Technique for Embracing the Values of Truthful Leadership

by Royce Sparks
The Authentic Leader: Using the Meisner Technique for Embracing the Values of Truthful Leadership
The Authentic Leader: Using the Meisner Technique for Embracing the Values of Truthful Leadership

The Authentic Leader: Using the Meisner Technique for Embracing the Values of Truthful Leadership

by Royce Sparks


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Using clear and simple exercises adapted for leadership development from the world-renowned Meisner Technique, The Authentic Leader will help you discover first-hand what it means to build your authentic leadership skills in a clear, technical way.

This book presents a version of the Meisner technique that has been thoughtfully modified for the purposes of leadership training. It aims to train leaders to be fully authentic in their responses in the most efficient way and to let their responses be filtered by their abilities to deeply interpret and thrive within the psychological realities of the circumstances they are entering, be it their own or other people’s. The exercises in this book teach that effective leadership skills are about getting the attention off of oneself and allowing for a type of interpersonal determinism to bring out a leader’s truthful responses. This text breaks open the conversation on leadership and business skills in a whole new way using an established, although largely unknown method in the business world that will help leaders engage in the values of great leadership and train their own abilities to have presence, be dynamic, be magnetic, and know how to read any situation and thrive within it.

Whether you are green in your career or at the head of a nation, an aspiring leader or an educator looking to use this material, this work develops and nourishes powerful leadership in unconventional, effective, and dynamic ways.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780367900991
Publisher: Productivity Press Inc.
Publication date: 08/07/2020
Pages: 298
Product dimensions: 7.00(w) x 10.00(h) x (d)

About the Author

Royce Sparks is an internationally recognized teacher of the Meisner Technique. He has taught it to both performers and members of the business world, having been one of the masterclass lecturers at UCL on their MSc in Management. A graduate of the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, he has presented on Meisner and other approaches to performance at international conferences. His interest in performance techniques for business and leadership development are a core element of his research. Individuals and companies within the arts he has collaborated with professionally include The Noh Theatre of Japan, Terence Stamp, Frantic Assembly, Nickolas Grace, Michael Attenborough, Complicite, Brigid Panet and more. He received his Meisner training first under Scott Williams at the Impulse Company in London for five modular years before furthering his knowledge and receiving his certification to teach the Meisner technique from leading world expert Larry Silverberg, with whom he later collaborated. He regularly coaches and has taught in Canada, the United Kingdom, Europe and the United States.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements ix

Part I The Heart of Leadership

1 Distilling the Wandering Mind 3

The Wisdom of Illness 3

The Placebo Effect (of) in Leadership Coaching 7

An Unexpected Lesson 9

The Unknown Path: The Values Not Often Shared 11

This Book and Our Journey Together 13

2 The Three Pillars of Leadership: Vision, Power, and Technique 17

Who Needs Leadership Skills? 17

Via Negativa 19

All Leaders Are Aspiring Leaders 21

A Little of Nothing 22

What Actors Teach Us about Leadership 23

The Perils of World View 25

A Challenging Balance 29

The Morals of Power and the Power of Morals 31

Power Applied: Divisions of Leadership 33

Natural Is NOT Necessarily Good, Good Is Not Necessarily Natural: the Dynamics of Interpersonal Power 35

That Which Moves 36

Identity and Institution: Power by Association 38

Forward Motion 42

Part II Living Truthfully

3 Investing: The Beginnings of Everything 45

A Complex Puzzle 45

The Law of Three People 47

The Power of Observation 48

Solving the Challenge 49

Exercise: Investing in the Reality of Doing 51

The Trouble With Counting Bricks 53

Rival Solutions 57

Summary 60

Tips for You and Your Coach 60

4 The River Between Two People 63

Creating Context 63

The Human Target 65

Exercise: You-You Repetition 66

Let Me Get That for You 73

Summary 76

Tips for You and Your Coach 77

5 The I in You 81

Beyond the Shallow Rim 81

Point of View 84

Exercise: You-I Repetition 85

Daring Pandora's Box 88

The Value of Dosed Chaos 90

False Positives in Training 92

How a Leader Learns Best 94

The Pivoting Moment 98

Summary 100

Tips for You and Your Coach 101

6 Catching the Floating Moment 103

Shoes over Soul Searching 103

Exercise: The Three Moment Exercise 105

The Moment in Isolation 109

A Hierarchy of Specificity 112

The Power of Stillness 117

A New Starting Point 119

Two Wild Cards 121

Top of the Mountain (For Now) 124

The Wiring Under Like King Kong 128

Summary 129

Tips for You and Your Coach 130

7 Moment by Moment 131

Leadership Across and Within 131

Exercise: The Three Moment Exercise 2.0 135

To Err Is Divine 140

Summary 146

Tips for You and Your Coach 146

8 Chaos and (in) Leadership 149

A New Gallop 149

Exercise: Switch 149

The Unseen Shared Values 151

The Storm in the Details 153

Unpredictably Predictable 157

Summary 160

Tips for You and Your Coach 161

9 Into the Great Unknown 163

The Depths 163

Exercise: Auto-Switch 163

Sans Safety Rails 165

To Time We Leave It 167

Technical Clean-Up Duty 170

The Subtle Eye of Chaos 172

What Belief Does to Chaos 174

Meaningful Meaning 177

Exercise: Repetition 178

Summary 180

Tips for You and Your Coach 181

10 The Knock at the Door 183

A Primal Impulse 183

Exercise: The Knock at the Door 183

Homework: The Independent Activity 196

Summary 198

Tips for You and Your Coach 199

Part III The Given Circumstances

11 Impossibility by Design 203

New Horizons 203

The Meaningful Ingredient 204

Inner Fire 206

Exercise: Preparation 207

Exercise: Independent Activity 210

The Four Criteria 211

Alternate Possibilities 213

Safety in Danger 214

Strategies of Safety 218

The Unacceptable Offer 219

Where Dragons Wait 220

Summary 221

Tips for You and Your Coach 221

12 A Broken Back Shows the Way 223

Reality Reintroduced 223

When the Actor in You Speaks 224

Exercise: Breaking the Back of a Text 225

Flattened Aliveness 230

Words, Words, Words 233

Summary 234

Tips for You and Your Coach 235

13 Life Examined 237

New Eyes 237

Exercise: Text Analysis 239

Side by Side 246

Exercise: Testing the Analysis 254

The Microcosm 254

Exercise: Interpersonal Analysis 255

That Wide Unknown 259

Summary 259

Tips for You and Your Coach 260

14 New Ground: Additional Exercises for Living Truthfully within a Given Set of Circumstances 261

Fine-Tuning 261

Completing the Hierarchy 261

Speeches and Presentations 265

The Activity 266

Partner Activity 267

Recorded Speeches 267

Tactile Aids 268

Structured Improvised Scenarios 268

Improv + Repetition 268

Preparation and Activities 269

Refining the Given Circumstances 270

Long-Form Scene Work 270

Summary 272

15 Afterword: The Essential Hunger 273

Index 277

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