Kellie Leitch: Authenticity in Leadership
(10 pages of text)
Case (Pub Mat)
Kellie Leitch, a long-time member of Canada's Conservative Party but a relative newcomer as an elected politician, ran in the party's 2017 election for a new party leader. Her platform addressed several issues, but the media focused on two: a commitment to institute screening of newcomers to the country for their adherence to Canadian values and a platform of anti-elite initiatives. By the time the election for leader was held in May 2017, Leitch had been singled out, criticized, and lambasted for a platform that was seen by many as running against not only accepted Canadian values but also her own experience and values. How had her reputation shifted from well-regarded physician and community leader to criticized political candidate? What strengths and experience would she need to rebuild her position?
This case is suitable for use in undergraduate, graduate, and executive education courses on leadership, communication, or career management, particularly in sessions dealing with leadership transition, authentic leadership, and reputation management. The case presents students with the opportunity to consider the following:
- The challenges of career and role transition and how to make those transitions.
- The meaning of authenticity, how it develops, who controls it, and the challenges in maintaining it.
- The relationship between authenticity and reputation, and how to restore them when discredited.
- The nature of resilience and how to become a resilient leader.
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Canada, Small, 2017
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