The dangers of faking it.....

Authenticity is key. It's been said that if you can fake it then you’ve got it made (until you are found out…).

Welcome to 2016. So how did you celebrate New Years Eve?

My wife Linda and I decided to dine out and then return home to welcome in 2016. We opted to watch BBC’s Hootenanny hosted by Jules Holland. We loved the energy and build up to the midnight chimes of Big Ben.  We enjoyed ourselves, watching the party atmosphere throughout the show. The finale was a great rendition of 'Enjoy yourself, it's later than you think'. Fabulous.[embed][/embed]

Imagine my disappointment when I noticed that the end of show credits said ‘Recorded at….’. I later discovered that the whole programme was recorded before Christmas. So the music wasn’t live, the countdown to midnight was staged and impromptu comments from all the celebrity guests were probably rehearsed. I felt I had been tricked.

OK, so the con hasn’t cost me anything. Maybe I should have read the small print. But the experience of seeing so many people faking a New Years Party with such gusto left me feeling a little empty, a bit let down. And it reminded me how important authenticity is in leadership, business and in ourselves.

So how do we deliver what our customers and employees need without deliberately misleading them?

For me, the ability to build trusting relationships is key. That’s about knowing yourself, what’s important to you and sharing this with others. Being upfront about your intentions and values and then living them will enable others to make judgements about you. No faking it. Disappointments will then be avoided.

So how will Linda and I celebrate New Year next time around? We’re not sure. But if we do watch Hootenanny then I will view it with a fair degree of cynicism – which is hardly the right mood to approach New Year. Therefore I'll more likely avoid Hootenanny and view it on iPlayer later, as just another programme to catch up on.

Wishing you all the best for an authentic 2016

Paul Beesley

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