Executive Presence: Myth, Meaningful or Mastery?
16 Pages Posted: 17 Sep 2019
Date Written: September 5, 2019
Executive presence is a theme that has been increasing in popularity over the last ten to fifteen years. As fascinating as the concept appears to be, there remains much confusion as to the nature of what executive presence truly represents. Is it trainable? Is it not trainable? Is it a so-called ‘x-factor’ in leadership? Is it something leaders are born with or can it be developed? Leaders and management consultants are debating these questions in the boardroom and in the classroom. Scholars and academic practitioners generally agree that executive presence can increase leadership effectiveness, widen leaders’ spheres of influence, and can be a career “game changer”. While some experts feel that executive presence relates to character, substance and style, others contend that it is connected to appearance, communication and “gravitas”. This paper could add clarity to the ongoing question of whether executive presence is merely a myth, if it is meaningful to practitioners and scholars, and if it eventually could make leaders masterful in their roles.
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