TALKING REAL. is a monthly update of leadership tips to inspire and inform sent from REAL. Leadership founder Steve Charlton.

REAL. Leadership provides a new template for leaders who don’t want to follow an old-fashioned and outdated system. We coach leaders to be more results focused, show more empathy, be more authentic and continuously learning from everyone around them.

We don’t have all the answers, but we are crystal clear on the role a leader plays in achieving long-lasting and real success for any business. Our aim is to create a network of like-minded people to bring about REAL. leadership change and make this happen.

1. REAL. Inspiring Leaders

Respectful, humble, honest, genuine, authentic, fair, supportive, determined, purposeful, driven.

Ten traits that any business leader would love to have in their armoury, ten traits that have been used to describe Gareth Southgate over the past few months. What can you learn from his leadership style?

We’ve been most impressed by his ability to make everything about his team, put them first and share the success. It’s about time traditional business leaders start to realise that people-focused leadership guarantees sustainable growth in terms of people and profits.

Learn more from his interview on the recent High Performance Podcast.

2. REAL.Leadership Tips

We are always looking for fun ways to start any meeting and especially those that might be more stressful. From simply asking everyone what was the last meal they’ve eaten to asking them to describe what superhero they would be and why?

A good team-building one for your first day back in the office could be to split into different teams, give them 10 minutes to find the most “inspirational” person or object in the vicinity and take a selfie next to it/them.

If you’re still online then why not ask everyone to send you a picture of their very first car (or their parent’s car) and then guess who owned which one…

Scroll to the bottom to see which car Steve owned!

3. REAL. Leadership Challenge and Solution

Recently the REAL leadership team talked to a number of senior business leaders in our community. They shared with us their lockdown experiences, what they’ve learned and how they will adapt their leadership style in the future. Above is one of the interesting results we had, and here’s some tips for overcoming this challenge.

As no-one knows what the next “normal” is, leaders must adopt a test-and-learn mindset. Be open to different working models and layouts, how to measure productivity vs encouraging collaboration. Don’t be afraid to experiment and to change your mind.

Always over-communicate – listen more than speaking, share your concerns (show vulnerability) so they feel safe to reciprocate and share, talk to individuals as well as the team. Say it once, twice and a third time to make sure.

Take time at the start of each meeting, virtual or on-site to ask how people are, as we’ve got busier in back-to back meetings that has been forgotten.

Don’t assume everyone is ok. Encourage people to ask you anything – sharing/listening/hearing is a great mantra.

Employ a team of “change agents”…the people in your team most likely to know what’s going on in your team, give you the “pulse” of what’s going on, give them licence to be brutally honest with you, tell you whether your communication is hitting home or not.

Send us an email at  and we’ll send you the full pdf of our findings.

4. REAL. Life

Our founder loves working with exciting leaders and their businesses, regardless of their background or experience they all have one thing in common…they can’t succeed alone!

They are keen to improve their leadership capabilities, but rarely want to fit into the blueprint of a traditional leader.

Business leaders must become what we call infinite leaders – those who not only enjoy learning but feel a constant need to acquire new skills.
Reid Hoffman – Co-Founder LinkedIn

Have you got some great leadership tips to share with our community? Please email and we’ll include them in future editions.


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