The Unlocked Leader: Dare to Free Your Own Voice, Lead with Empathy, and Shine Your Light in the World

The Unlocked Leader: Dare to Free Your Own Voice, Lead with Empathy, and Shine Your Light in the World

The Unlocked Leader: Dare to Free Your Own Voice, Lead with Empathy, and Shine Your Light in the World

The Unlocked Leader: Dare to Free Your Own Voice, Lead with Empathy, and Shine Your Light in the World


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The most effective leaders are “human leaders:” leading with empathy, vulnerability, and authenticity. But many still adhere to the outdated myth that leaders must be “superhero leaders: infallible, unflappable, and fearless." Tragically, their innate ability to inspire remains locked within, blunting their impact.

In The Unlocked Leader veteran executive leadership coach Hortense le Gentil combines real life stories, rigorous research, and practical tools to explain how superhero leaders can become effective human leaders. You’ll discover:

· How to identify the mental obstacles that stand between you and leadership authenticity, and sap your energy and impact - your mindtraps.

· How to confront your fears and escape those traps by operating a mindshift.

· Practical strategies to better connect with yourself and others - a mindbuild.

The journey from superhero leader to human leader not only transforms the lives of leaders themselves - both at work and beyond. It also makes a profound and lasting difference in the lives of people around them and the organizations they lead. This is how human leaders make an impact and shine their light in the world: by changing the way they connect with themselves and other people, they start a chain reaction that reverberates throughout their organizations and beyond them, because we are all part of interconnected networks of human relationships.

An indispensable leadership manual for people who wish to lead not just with their heads, but with their heart and soul as well, The Unlocked Leader belongs on the bookshelves of leaders and aspiring leaders at all levels looking for a fresh new perspective on effective, powerful leadership in service of something bigger than themselves.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781394152933
Publisher: Wiley
Publication date: 09/26/2023
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 213,450
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

HORTENSE LE GENTIL is an executive leadership coach whose work is informed by 30 years of experience working across industries. Hortense is part of the Marshall Goldsmith 100 Coaches, which brings together the world’s leading executive coaches, consultants, speakers, authors, iconic leaders, entrepreneurs, and nonprofit leaders.

Table of Contents

Foreword by Jim Citrin



INTRODUCTION: The Fear of Being Human9

A New Business Environment and New Expectations 

The Sum of All Fears 

How to Become a Human Leader

PART 1: MINDTRAP – Identify Your Lock 

Chapter 1. When the keys to past success get in your way: how mindsets become mindtraps 

The Birth of a Mindtrap 

Cul de Sac 

How well do you know yourself? 

Chapter 2. Uncover your inner obstacles: which mindtrap is holding you back? 

The long shadow of trauma 

What is a Trauma? 

Inherited trauma 

How do you define your identity? 

Are You Wearing the Right “Suit”? 

The Consequence of Mindtraps 

Chapter 3. Find the source of your mindtrap: whose voice is it? 

The Voice of Authority 

When behavior speaks louder than words

The Power of the Collective 

Which voice do you listen to? 

PART 2: MINDSHIFT – Free Your Voice 

Chapter 4. How we can change our mindset: the stories we tell ourselves 

Finding Order in Chaos 

The Master Filter

The Meaning Making Machine 

The Space and Time Traveler

The Human Connection 

The gap between who we are and how we are perceived 

The “Gandhi neurons” 

Chapter 5. See yourself differently: a view from outside the frame 

Hitting the Wall

The Gift of External Perspective 

Your immediate environment

The power of words

The Professional Guide 

Open your Ears, Eyes and Mind85

Chapter 6. Challenge your beliefs: is it true, relevant, or helpful today? 89

Truth Be Told 




Is it relevant? 




Is it still helpful? 



Chapter 7. Challenge your fears: three strategies to “do it anyway” 

See the Gift in Crises 

Find Your Boosters 

Take One Step at a Time 

Chapter 8. Let it go: three ways to make peace with the past

Let Go 



Rewrite Your Story 

Time travel

PART 3: MINDBUILD – Lead With Empathy 

Chapter 9. Define your identity as a human leader 

Understand what drives you 

From Personal to Collective Purpose 

Write Your Eulogy 

Imagine your future self

Back to the future 

Identify your role models

The Other Benefits of Flexing Your Imagination 

Chapter 10. Empower your inner leader: four practices to better connect with yourself

Staying on the Right Path 

Self-care for the soul

Draw from a bank of positive memories

Practice Gratitude 

Learn to protect yourself and recharge 

Chapter 11. Become a new leader: four practices to better connect with others 

Learn to listen more and speak last

Cultivate Your Empathy 

Practice and roleplay conversations 

Learn to set and maintain new boundaries 



CONCLUSION: The New Leader 


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