Do You Know Your True North?

Top Tips On Becoming An Empowered & Empowering Leader

From 2016 Australian CEO of the Year Viv Allanson


One of the CEO’s I coached in 2016, Viv Allanson, CEO of Maroba Aged Care Services in Newcastle was recently awarded the coveted APAC Insider’s 2016 Australian CEO of the Year Award and both she and I are incredibly proud of this achievement. Today Viv is going to help you discover your true North by sharing some valuable tips.

An inspiring and visionary leader, Viv prides herself on applying principles of justice and sustainability in her work, assisting aged care services internationally to design and build aged care facilities that provide a positive environment for clients and staff alike.

In this inspiring article, Viv shares her top tips on becoming an empowered and empowering leader.

  1. The capacity to love others, even the unlovable. The unlovable maybe clients, your team, maybe even your own family. If we bring into our leadership role – whether in the workplace, community or family setting – baggage around people who are unlovable and we don’t deal with that effectively it will thwart our relationships. We need to be very clear that we are here to love our stakeholders, because they are the ones that unlock our success. We will not become successful in and of our own doing.
  2. The courage to go in a different direction
    to where everyone else is going. All my working life this is what I’ve done and I’ve required enormous amounts of courage to do it. What motivates that courage? It’s my love for the people. Loving them enough to take courage to create a new path.
  3. Know who you are.
    Know yourself and be very comfortable in your own skin. Not striving to look to who is the latest trend or how should you be. But to know yourself first and show up as your authentic self.
  4. Be your authentic self.
    People often struggle with authenticity. They can’t always explain it, but people can certainly smell a rat when authenticity doesn’t show up. Yet we see it time and time again. If you know your authentic self however you can figure out where the sincere relationships lie and to trust those people to tell you the truth.
  5. Rely on sincere relationships to hold you accountable.
    True friendships will give honest feedback about how you’re showing up, performing and relating to the rest of the world. Superficial people won’t tell you that, so it’s important to surround yourself with solid, strong, supportive, loving relationships.
  6. Knowing and understanding your true north.
    From a young girl, all I ever wanted to do was be a nurse. Nobody could take that away from me, that was the driver within me. Why? Because I knew I could make a difference. I chose the profession and passion of nursing to live that out. Had I not known my true North, I would have been dragged this way and that way. If you know your true North you show up authentically and you have people around you who love you enough to tell you the truth about how you’re showing up, then you can step into leadership with confidence.
  7. Seek a confidante. As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. That’s what I found to be the biggest benefit in my coaching experience with Caryn Walsh. It was absolutely critical for me to get my traction; my wheels were spinning and I just needed that experienced level headedness and passion to come back alongside me saying “Viv we can get this done.”


Watch the full interview here 

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