The fringe benefits of failure

We were working with a group of leaders just the other day and whilst preparing for the session with them we came across this great video of JK Rowling again. Its a few years old now, but she still manages to impress us every time we watch it, so thought it was worth sharing just in case anyone hasn’t seen it yet.


The particular session we were running was all about how to increase your credibility as a leader, something that can have a huge impact on how much people respect you and want to work for you. In their famous book The Leadership Challenge,(another one definitely worth a read) ┬áKouzes and Posner conducted a ton of research into how vital a leaders’ credibility is. They discovered people who perceive their manager to have credibility are proud to tell others who they work for and have a strong sense of ownership and commitment to the organisation. Whereas conversely, people who perceive their manager to have low or no credibility often only produce if they are being monitored, are motivated by money and display very little loyalty.


Because of these reasons the session we were running was focused on how, they as leaders, could increase their credibility. For us there are 4 key factors


  1. Confidence – in who you are and what you bring
  2. Consistency – not changing your opinions to fit in with others
  3. Congruency – what you say, what you do and how you act are all aligned. Its also the classic case of ‘walking the talk’
  4. Experience – Been there done that. This is where JK Rowling came in. One of the best ways to demonstrate experience is to have some ‘war stories’ up your sleeve that you can share, especially if its a case of where things haven’t gone to plan. This is what JK Rowling does SO well. She uses both humour and her natural storytelling ability to draw the audience of eager young students towards her. She highlights how her experience of failure “set her free” and that its not something to be ashamed of.


Honestly its well worth a watch!


Of course if you want to know more about how to increase your leadership credibility don’t hesitate to get in touch



Many Thanks


Martin & Elizabeth

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