What is Soulful Leadership?

Soulful leadership is characterised by one who acts in an authentic manner, seeking information that informs decisions and behaving in a manner that respects and honours the value of others. Soulful leadership is often informed by or tied to one’s spiritual awareness, and a desire for impacting the greater good. It is a form of leadership that relies on thoughtful intellection, honest and trusted relationships, effective problem-solving skills, a solid moral compass, and intuition with an eye on doing the right thing over that which is “just easier.” Ultimately, soulful leaders contribute to the ongoing prosperity and well-being of all involved – the leader, organisation, people (employees, customers, communities), and environment (health and resources).

A soulful leader is more likely to inject leadership with greater purpose and passion, and move it away from its current storyline of crisis toward one of greater trust, higher employee engagement, and fewer incidents of scandalous behaviour. Our mission is to foster the development of leaders with the knowledge, tools, and support necessary to bring out the best in the leader, and promote an environment that supports informed choice in the selection of one’s leadership style.

What does the research tell us about Soulful Leadership?

Arthur P. Ciaramicoli, Ed.D., Ph.D states in his research:

“What makes up the soul? Soul, is that intangible, invisible part of every human being that yearns for attachment to something deeper and broader than ourselves. A person who is soulful lives with purpose and a desire to be of service. He or she is not primarily motivated by status or image but has a natural interest in teasing out the potential of a family, community, corporation, community and nation. Soulful people lead with great passion, they are intimately aware of the structure of their organisation. They are interested in motivating from the bottom up, not from the top down. They know who cleans their office, who mows the lawn, who fixes their computers, who serves the food, who are the secretaries and the receptionists. They speak to everyone, no one person is seen as less valuable in the larger sphere than anyone else. Soulful people tend to lead balanced lives, they work with intensity, they play with intensity, but they know how to turn the dial down and enjoy life. They have an inherent love of young people, they love to educate, to witness the blossoming of young talent, whether it be their own children or the beginners in their businesses. They are the voice of reason in the face of conflict; they are not quick reactors but thoughtful contributors. They know how to listen as they are genuinely interested in understanding not only those like them but also those who on the surface seem different, they are known for finding the common ground”.

Why is Soulful Leadership important?

Soulful leadership is when we develop and balance our resilient leadership skills with our soul purpose as an authentic leader. We have clarity on our own vision, mission and values, empowering us to lead authentically:
  • We have a deeper understanding of ‘what we do’ as well as ‘who we really are’ as a leader.
  • We learn to be at peace with the decisions we make, have clarity of direction on how we want our team to move forwards and we own our unique leadership style.
  • We become values-based leaders, learning to be courageous in our vulnerability to lead with purpose.

Key Questions to Reflect on as Soulful Leaders:

  • Do you have a leadership mantra to guide you on your journey?
  • Are you clear on your values, your purpose and your Ikigai?
  • Do you speak your truth and challenge your self-limiting beliefs?
  • Do you harness your courageous vulnerability, embrace your authenticity and acknowledge the imposter syndrome?
  • Do you stay true to yourself despite the challenges whilst remaining strategic with your choices and decisions?

Articles

Forbes

Soulful Leadership: Reimagining Leadership For Today’s Complex World

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Harvard Business Review

Stop Framing Wellness Programs Around Self-Care

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Jaap Gerloff

The awakening of the soulful leaders

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Kirsten Graham

Leading with purpose: A case for soul leadership

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Blogs

Maureen Metcalf

The Soulful Leader: Learning How Empathy, Compassion and Ethical Values Improve Well-Being and Creative Productivity

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Ranger Soul

Soulful Leadership: When awareness becomes authority​

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Books

Chopra, Deepak

The Soul of Leadership

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Ciaramicoli, Arthur and Crystal, Jim

The Soulful Leader: Success with Authenticity, Integrity and Empathy

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Garcia, Hector

Ikigai: The Japanese secret to a long and happy life

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Kerr, James

Legacy

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Porteous, Mark

Soulful Leadership: A Spiritual Path to Health, Wealth and Love

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Listen

The Search for the Soulful Leader

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The Soulful Leader

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The Soulful Leader Podcast

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Watch

Open Books

5 Characteristics of a Soulful Leader

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Gaurav Bhalla

Soulful Leadership

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Frederick Laloux

Soulful Organisations

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Jean East

Leading with Head, Heart and Soul

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Lolly Daskal

We Cannot Lead Others Without First Leading From Within

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What People Say

If you are looking to work with someone who has an infectious passion for making positive change happen, you will love working with Hannah. She has a wealth of experience at a senior leadership level and is hugely committed to the diversity agenda. I have benefitted personally from Hannah’s wisdom and guidance on these issues on a number of occasions.

Andy Buck

Founding DirectorLeadership Matters

When it comes to authentic and courageous leadership, Hannah is unbeatable. Her value-driven approach allows her to be precise and focused whilst taking an empathic approach. One of the leadership traits I admire the most in Hannah is her commitment to asking the difficult questions that others avoid, and this has been evident in her work encouraging Diverse Leaders. She is fearless and highly skilled at driving change, even in complex situations. Hannah is a catalyst and can cause a mindset shift in one conversation. Her leadership creates leaders.

Jaz Ampaw-Farr

Author & Speaker

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