Episode 1 – Leadership Complexity
When (re)designing leadership frameworks and -development programs at our client’s premises, we often get the question what leadership is. Before strategic workshops take off, clients often start deep diving into the latter themselves. After a while, they notice being overwhelmed and don’t see the wood for the trees. Lots of research has been done during the last century whereby a bunch of theories, styles, models, books have been published. So, what makes organisational leadership so complex (episode 1)?
This is what we’ll talk through during this blog. In the next episodes we’ll share some more insights related to:
- leadership theories (episode 2)
- leadership styles (episode 3)
- the importance of followership (episode 4)
- and of course, last but not least, Shared Leadership (episode 5)
Let’s also share some thoughts during our upcoming Leadership-webinar, on September 21st 2017. More info will follow in the coming weeks!
So, what makes it all so complex? Leadership theories study interactions (e.g. through personality, skills, attitudes, beliefs, …) leaders have within organisations and describes how this reflects to the related leadership outcomes (e.g. the follower’s relationship with its leader, the produced output, employee satisfaction, …).
Hundreds or more elements need to be taken into account when trying to get a grip on this topic. Most of the leadership theories only look at one (1) type of leadership related input (e.g.: personality, traits, behaviour, …). They make a statement predicting the leadership outcome. The good thing is that the specific theory therefore can be empirically tested and measured. Correlations can be found and compared with each other. Scientific supported conclusions can be written and published.
All theoretic models that really do accurately predict something, are useful and relevant in particular contexts. It depends on what you’re looking for: what leadership drivers do you need to accomplish the predefined organisational goals? Which leadership behaviour do you want to adjust? What kind of outcome is expected from your leaders? For example: if you are looking at work-related outputs, then variables concerning the leaders’ relationships might not (in first instance) be relevant for you. In other words, the leadership theory that you want to use must include elements that are of interest for you. But, when the pedal hits the metal, it is shown that a one-size theory doesn’t fit all leadership needs! Besides the theories (blog episode 2), numerous type of leadership styles exist (blog episode 3). What style will fit your needs best? And what about your leaders’ followers (blog episode 4)? Let’s try to increase insight and reduce complexity in the upcoming blogs.
In episode 5, and during our live webinar (September 21st), we will explain our vision and approach to make organisational leadership understandable and effective. Leadership that brings long-lasting results in the end.
The next blog, episode 2, will be published as soon as possible. If you are looking for some additional food for thought we can advise some other interesting readings:
- Book ‘Naar Gedeeld Leiderschap’ (Koen Marichal en Karen Wouters), ISBN 978-94-6337-115-5
- Book ‘Goestingarchitecten’ (Mieke Van Gramberen), ISBN 978-94-0145-051-5
Curious what we can mean for your organisation?
Kris Rayen +32 474 98 30 05 firstname.lastname@example.org
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