Are You a “Challenger” Leader Feeling Misunderstood?

by Roberto Giannicola, PCC

Hey there, assertive, decisive, and determined leaders.

Do you ever feel like you’re operating on a different frequency than everyone else?

You drive business to success, but despite your best efforts, you’re still misunderstood, and your team doesn’t seem to be on the same page as you.

My name is Roberto Giannicola, and I get it. I’m assertive, strong-minded, and thrive on direct communication.

Admitting this used to feel strange, almost like acknowledging I needed to be in a twelve-step program for my forceful nature.

But here’s the truth: My goal was to expand and grow—not to control, dominate, or bruise egos.

However, I knew my leadership style needed refinement.

I had to learn to bridge the gap between strength and sensitivity, ensuring I lead not just with my mind but with my heart, too.

If you’re like me, you’ve stumbled, and your “Challenger” leadership style has caused personal and professional discomfort.

You may be familiar with these common setbacks:

  • Your straight talk seems harsh, causing people to be guarded around you.
  • You delegate but can’t fully trust the process, and your team feels micromanaged.
  • You aim to inspire yet come off more as commanding than connecting.
  • Your drive sets a high bar, which can create a tense atmosphere.
  • You lead with clarity and purpose, but wonder if your team understands your vision.
  • Your pursuit of perfection leads to exhaustion both for you and your team.

This isn’t just my story. It’s a call to action for all leaders who identify as Challengers.

Your brilliant strategies and visions often get muddied by your strong, commanding leadership style, which can have significant business consequences.

It’s time to amplify your results and refine your influence.

Here’s what other successful Challenger leaders have accomplished.

  • They’ve harnessed their intensity to lead more effectively and secure business results.
  • They’ve built teams that understand and excel under their guidance.
  • They’ve created environments where intimidation is replaced by inspiration and drive.
  • They lead with visions that motivate improving productivity and success.
  • They’ve increased their empathy to show appreciation and avoid churn.

So can you! Here is how you can start.

Reflect on what aspects of your leadership could use refinement or a new focus.

  1. What areas of yourself or your business are impacted by your leadership style? Be specific about the problems you want to solve, whether they are business challenges, professional roadblocks, or personal growth areas.
  2. How are these issues impacting you and your business? Quantify the cost regarding time, money, health, and overall well-being.
  3. What are you missing in your approach? Identify what you are not doing, what you could do better, and what to address to overcome these obstacles. In short, what is yours to own?

Not sure about these? I dare you to ask around. I’m confident your team has plenty to say.

The answers to these questions will pave the way for your transformation, elevating success for you, your team, and your organization.

I’m Roberto Giannicola, not just assertive and decisive by nature but also a human committed to understanding, expanding, and helping leaders facing similar challenges.

I see you. I’ll be a mirror to your shadows, pushing you to face your blindspots and become a remarkable leader.

Elevate your Leadership Potential

To learn more about challenger leadership and executive coaching, reach out to Robert for a consultation.