Embracing Receptive Leadership

How comfortable are you receiving instead of acting, giving, sharing, and creating?


Through my international coaching and training work, I’ve witnessed that while most high achieving leaders are comfortable producing, designing, and accomplishing their goals, it’s much harder to be still, be open, and be ready to receive from others and the environment around you. And from my experience, this holds true across cultures, languages, and value structures!

With such a busy season of creation happening in my life currently (from strategic business development to baby growth at eight months pregnant now!), I’ve found it essential to consider the alternate perspective of balancing receptivity with activity.

I call this practice Receptive Leadership, and it’s based on the framework that author and coach, Amanda Owen, shares in her groundbreaking book Born to Receive.

Embracing RL

You practice Receptive Leadership when you intentionally choose to exhibit your influence through channeling your receptive power that is supportive, rather than using active power to force a particular outcome.


From Born to Receive by Amanda Owen

Embracing Receptive Leadership puts you in what Owen calls a “receptive state” where…

  • You are calm, relaxed, and engaged
  • You conserve your energy and suspend activity
  • You listen
  • You remain open
  • You are patient

Receptive Leadership can look and feel different based on your context, natural strengths, and personal background. Here are some examples of habits and ways of being that Receptive Leaders embody and practice:

  • Building in intentional time to relax and take a break, especially when your calendar is full and life feels crazy
  • Watching and observing others as they interact and connect
  • Letting go of the things you can’t control and the negative self-talk that derails you
  • Appreciating what you have in your personal and professional life instead of comparing and judging yourself (and others)
  • Welcoming interruptions as opportunities to disconnect and reboot
  • Noticing how your environment is supporting you and showing gratitude in return

Owen also identifies these Top Ten Skills of Skilled Receivers that complement these Receptive Leadership practices beautifully.


From Born to Receive by Amanda Owen

“We need to compose our lives in such a way that we both give and receive, learning to do both with grace.” ~Mary Catherine Bateson

The Art of Asking

One specific ability that skilled Receptive Leaders develop is asking the right people for what they want in a humble and honest way. Typically, we don’t ask for help or support because we believe we can “do it all” (or at least do most of it) or we have mental roadblocks based on our pride and ego that prevent us from reaching out. Sadly, this creates more divides and disconnections, generally leaving us alone and without what we truly want.

“A lot of people are afraid to say what they want. That’s why they don’t get what they want.” ~Madonna

Consider this…

  • How easy is it for you to clearly articulate what you need?
  • Do you often take the next step of asking for this support?
  • What gets in your way of asking for help?
  • Name three specific areas that you desire more support in your life now.
  • What one thing are you willing to do to reach out and ask for help?

Receptive Leaders are not afraid to ask for what they want, and they expect to get it. They are able to get over themselves enough to accept help from others, building bridges instead of walls. This forms a powerful sense of community and connection that cannot be created if we are working alone or think we can manage everything solo.

“Ask for what your want and be prepared to get it!” ~Maya Angelou

How will you embrace Receptive Leadership to enhance your influence and impact? I’d love to hear all about it!

Calling All Millennial Leaders and Managers

x8EkZf3Yn9U6wAAACV0RVh0ZGF0ZTpjcmVhdGUAMjAxNC0xMC0yMVQwMzoxNDo1MC0wNzowME8qMGsAAAAldEVYdGRhdGU6bW9kaWZ5ADIwMTQtMTAtMTZUMjM6MjE6NDYtMDc6MDChy3dqAAAAAElFTkSuQmCCOver the next few weeks, I will be connecting with high-achieving Millennial leaders and the people that manage them to support the development of a BRAND NEW program that I’ll be launching later this year.

If you fit into any of the categories below, then email me for more information on how you can help (and get a FREE gift!).

  • You are a Millennial Leader (age 25-35)
  • You manage Millennial Leaders in your current role
  • You know one or more awesome Millennial Leaders and/or managers I can connect with

Thanks for your support and create a great day!

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Leslie Bosserman, M.Ed., CPCC

Leadership Coach & Culture Consultant
Call: 310.409.9240

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My Motherhood Intentions

Dear Moms…


As I prepare to join your noble ranks in just a few short weeks as a new mom, I’ve been reflecting a lot on what it means to become a mother – to fully care for and love another person that you had the ability to create and birth. I am often overwhelmed by so many thoughts and emotions as I try to grasp the deep and awesome capacity I have to love someone who I haven’t even met yet.

While I know motherhood is far more complex than I can ever imagine, I wanted to share some of my best intentions for the mom I want to be.  I’ve largely learned these principles from the example the courageous women who I’ve been blessed to know and what they have so graciously modeled for me.

My Motherhood Intentions


Be Available. The best moms – and people – are the ones you can connect with and who make time for you. Even when life feels “too busy,” be available for your children and husband. Remember, relationships are more important than tasks.

url-1Teach Honesty. Children learn through observation, so model honesty in your speech, emotions, actions, and interactions. They are absorbing more than you know!

MW-BQ655_bubble_ME_20131210095914Play Often. Allow raising children to let you connect with how to play and be silly. There is a time to be serious, too, but don’t forget to play!

Release Expectations. Realize that motherhood is new terrain and that you are always learning. Don’t judge yourself or compare yourself to others who may seem to “have it all together.” Be real and let that be enough.

2594328877_46abbb6485_zChoose Positively. When life is hard and things seem to be stuck or just plain frustrating, find the silver lining and focus on the hope, love, and purpose behind it all. You can always choose your perspective, so choose positively.

While these are just five simple intentions, I wanted to share these as we approach Mother’s Day this weekend and let you know how humbled and excited I am to be at this stage of my life!

I also would love to know your most important intention, reminder, or piece of advice as a mom if you’d like to share or comment below.


Thank you for being perfectly (and imperfectly) YOU, and enjoy a very special Mother’s Day this Sunday!

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Leslie Bosserman, M.Ed., CPCC

Leadership Coach & Culture Consultant
Call: 310.409.9240

Subscribe here to stay connected!