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The Unlocked Leader

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

le Gentil, Hortense


1. Auflage September 2023
256 Seiten, Hardcover
Wiley & Sons Ltd

ISBN: 978-1-394-15293-3
John Wiley & Sons

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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 But many still adhere to the outdated myth that leaders must be "superhero leaders: infallible, unflappable, and fearless."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.

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

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.