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            [post_title] =>  The ‘Simply Irresistible’ Leader
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sue cox
Sue Cox is a Learning and Development Consultant and a Tango dancer.  She has worked extensively with the public and not-for-profit sectors as well as the corporate world and has developed and led social inclusion projects across the UK. She is interested in how we develop our own potential and how we connect better with others in order to be more effective in our organisations and relationships. She will be a keynote speaker at the IMI National Management Conference on 8 October 2015 IMI: Based on your current work – if you only had 6 words of advice to give a business - what would they be?

SC: Want better leadership? Develop your followership.

IMI: What does this mean? SC: Many organisations invest heavily in developing and recognising good leadership but give little or no thought to actively cultivating good followership. Leadership is, by definition, a relational process however there is no leadership unless there is a leader/follower dynamic. When we focus only on developing leadership, we give visibility and importance to one aspect only, neglecting the contribution of followership and the untapped potential of the relationship between the two.  How much do we lose by doing so? A powerful illustration of what this looks like in practice can be seen in Argentine Tango. There is a misconception in Tango that the leader is in control and the follower is relatively passive. Nothing could be further from the truth. Tango is complex, improvised and co-created in the moment and it depends entirely on the leader/follower dynamic.  Good followership amplifies and strengthens leadership; good leadership maximises the followers’ contribution. The quality of their connection elevates the whole dance to a greater level of performance. Misconceptions about leadership and followership are seen as often in the boardroom as they are in the ballroom. If you want to release potential in your organisation and be resourceful and creative in the way you respond to change and opportunity, the challenge is to develop everybody’s ability as both leader and follower, so that each can play their full part in co-creating the dance. IMI: Where should we look for further information? SC: Visit my website at Ballroom2Boardroom.com 

tango

Sue Cox spoke at the IMI National Management Conference on Thursday 8 October. This event has now reached maximum capacity however if you would like to be added to the waiting list, please email your contact details and company name to conference@imi.ie. [post_title] => "Want better leadership? Develop your followership" Six Word Wisdom from Sue Cox [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => want-better-leadership-develop-followership-six-word-wisdom-sue-cox [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2020-05-11 20:42:07 [post_modified_gmt] => 2020-05-11 20:42:07 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.imi.ie/?p=11952 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 22610 [post_author] => 80 [post_date] => 2018-04-05 09:27:06 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-04-05 09:27:06 [post_content] => [caption id="attachment_22612" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Jack Welch was CEO of GE for 20 years. In a changing world, is he still the model for leadership? Jack Welch was CEO of GE for 20 years. In a changing world, is he still the model for leadership?[/caption]   When discussing the challenges facing business leaders it seems almost de rigeur nowadays to talk about the level of change organisations are facing. The challenge to equip leaders to build the future in these uncertain times is certainly daunting, with seismic geopolitical shifts (in this context the Trump administration seems to be the gift that keeps on giving), disruptive technological change (how many of us even fully understand the implications of bitcoin, blockchain and whatever new technology will be unleashed on us next) and even severe climate and weather events. The very ubiquitous nature of these challenges may however inure us to their real potential as both a threat and an opportunity to affect a true paradigm shift in how we view leadership, a classic case of an issue being undervalued through overuse. . The Concept of Leadership From the perspective of the 21st century the development of our concept of leadership is a little clearer than it may have been in the past.  From this remove we can see how the largely male, heroic models of leadership have greatly influenced the literature and teaching in this field. The business leaders who are most often cited, Jack Welch, Steve Jobs etc. are broadly from a similar mould and the models of leadership, with the exception of Servant Leadership (as a servant leader you put the needs of others, particularly team members, before you even consider your own, but how many executives really model themselves on this type of leadership?) extol an assertive, confident, out-going and mainly extroverted style. In fact, the Myers Briggs type most associated with leadership is the ENTJ (extraversion, intuition, thinking, judgment), which is described as the ‘general’, again exposing the military underpinnings of the leadership canon. We can clearly see this bias in the continuing popularity of books like Dale Carnegie’s “How to win friends and influence people”, the pseudoscience of NLP and programmes that teach executives how to create the right ‘impression’. Given the genesis of the leadership concept it is understandable that people might misconstrue the notion of leadership presence as the ability to impose oneself (and influence people), but there is real hope that we are about to experience a genuine shift in the paradigm. . Unhappy Influencers [caption id="attachment_22617" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Richard Boyatzis studied how leaders influence those around them Richard Boyatzis studied how leaders influence those around them and how that effected their lives and careers[/caption] . Recent research conducted by Richard Boyatzis and colleagues from Case Western Reserve University examined the relationship between the extent to which people adopted an ‘influencing’ leadership style and their later satisfaction with both their careers and their life in general.  Interestingly they found a very strong negative correlation between these factors, i.e. the more people adopted an influence style the less satisfied they were with their careers and lives. Boyatzis and colleagues did not have an objective measure of career success, so one could still argue that the ‘influencers’ did better in their careers, but Boyatzis’ research does tell us that irrespective on how well an outsider might judge your career progress, the ‘influencers’ are less happy about their situation.  The researchers concluded that those who adopt an influencing style are pushing on their environment and trying to get more from others, e.g. they tend to show a high need to control social situations. The crux of the problem, especially in the context of a VUCA world, is that pushing on or trying to control an environment that is in a constant state of flux, verging on chaos is unlikely to be very effective and will certainly lead to people being highly dissatisfied and unhappy in their work and indeed their lives. Now would be the perfect time for the leadership movement to learn the lessons of evolutionary psychology that success in a changing environment falls to the most adaptable, those who can outlearn their competition.   The Adaptable Generation This will require a cadre of new leaders who are less ego-identified with success and winning, who don’t see problems as opportunities to impose themselves and demonstrate mastery of the environment. Rather we will see the emergence of leaders who can go with the flow, adapt to new realities quickly, work through and with others as either leader or follower and pivot gracefully as cherished paradigms fall away and hard-earned experience proves ineffective as a guide to new problems. There is no doubt that the idea of women in leadership is in the current zeitgeist and may or may not create a fundamental shift in how we see leadership in the future.  I am however hopeful, that as the new model emerges we will see less emphasis on the old machismo of the ability to impose oneself on others and on the environment and more emphasis on the willingness to adapt, change and ‘flow’ with emerging realities. Bruce Lee used to tell his students to ‘be like water’, perhaps that is not a bad metaphor for what leaders will need to become.   imi-colm-foster-810Dr Colm Foster is Director of Executive Education at the Irish Management Institute. He has acted as a leadership development consultant to organisations in the US, Asia and Ireland, particularly specialising in Emotional Intelligence. The next IMI Diploma in Leadership starts on 2nd May, 2018. [post_title] => 21st Century Leadership: The Shifting River [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 21st-century-leadership-shifting-river [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2020-05-09 13:19:26 [post_modified_gmt] => 2020-05-09 13:19:26 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.imi.ie/?p=22610 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 8010 [post_author] => 7 [post_date] => 2014-09-04 14:33:32 [post_date_gmt] => 2014-09-04 14:33:32 [post_content] => Due to a number of factors such as technology and globalisation our day to day lives - whether business or personal increasingly involve broader international networks.  And while in the IMI blog we often consider our "effectiveness" in how we interact with and manage others but all too often we do not discuss the critical factors of nationality and culture. How do cultural differences impact on your ability to do business? And how can we make sure we are maximising our relationships with those in our network who may be operating with cultural differences to our own.   Erin Meyer is a professor at INSEAD, one of the world's leading international business schools. Her work has appeared in Harvard Business Review, Singapore Business Times and Forbes.com. In 2013 the Thinkers 50 named her as one of 30 up-and-coming thinkers and in October 2013 British Airways Business Life magazine on their list of 'Ten Dons to Watch'. Her work focuses on how the world's most successful global leaders navigate the complexities of cultural differences in an international environment.   Erin-Meyer IMI: Based on your current work - if you only had 6 words of advice to give a business - what would they be? EM: Succeed Globally with a Culture Map IMI: What does this mean? EM: Today, whether we work with colleagues in Dusseldorf or Dubai, Brasilia or Beijing, New York or New Delhi, we are all part of a global network (real or virtual, physical or electronic) where success requires navigating through wildly different cultural realities. Unless we know how to decode other cultures and avoid easy-to-fall-into cultural traps, we are easy prey to misunderstanding, needless conflict, and ultimate failure. Yet most managers have little understanding of how local culture impacts global interaction. Even those who are culturally informed, travel extensively, and have lived abroad often have few strategies for dealing with the cross-cultural complexity that affects their team's day-to-day effectiveness. To help people improve their ability to decode the cultural differences impacting their work and to enhance their effectiveness in dealing with these differences, I have built on the work of many in my field to develop a tool called the Culture Map. It is made up of eight scales representing the management behaviours where cultural gaps are most common. The eight scales are based on decades of academic research into culture from multiple perspectives. To this foundation I have added my own work, which has been validated by extensive interviews with thousands of executives who have confirmed or corrected my findings.   The scales are:
  • Communicating: explicit vs. implicit
  • Evaluating: direct criticism vs. indirect criticism
  • Leading: egalitarian vs. hierarchical
  • Deciding: consensual vs. top down
  • Trusting: task vs. relationship
  • Disagreeing: confrontational vs. avoidance
  • Scheduling: linear-time vs. flexible-time
  • Persuading: applications-first vs. principles-first
By analyzing the relative positioning of one nationality to another on each scale, managers learn to decode how culture influences day-to-day international collaboration and therefor avoid the common pitfalls. Managers have always needed to understand human nature and personality differences – that’s nothing new. What is new is that twenty-first century managers must understand a wider, richer array of work styles than ever before. They have to be able to determine which aspects of their interactions are simply a result of personality and which are a result of differences in cultural perspective. IMI: Where should we look for further information? EM: Read The Culture Map: Breaking Through the Invisible Boundaries of Global Business.  Or my HBR article:  Navigating the Cultural Minefield www.erinmeyer.com. Erin Meyer will be holding a Masterclass at IMI on September 30th.  If you are interested in attending click here to register. [post_title] => "Decode cultural differences to suceed globally" Six Word Wisdom from Erin Meyer [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => six-word-wisdom-erin-mayer [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2020-05-11 21:04:07 [post_modified_gmt] => 2020-05-11 21:04:07 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.imi.ie/?p=8010 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) )
Mary Meaney

Mary Meaney

7th Jun 2017

Mary Meaney is the Head of the Design and Innovation team at the Irish Management Institute. 

Related Articles

 The ‘Simply Irresistible’ Leader
"Want better leadership? Develop your followership" Six Word Wisdom from Sue Cox
21st Century Leadership: The Shifting River
"Decode cultural differences to suceed globally" Six Word Wisdom from Erin Meyer

Key Insights From IMI Leadership and Beyond Masterclass with Manfred F.R. Kets de Vries

In the course of this extensive IMI Masterclass series in Cork and Dublin, Manfred considered leadership from several perspectives. At its heart, he believes leadership to be about human behaviour – what we do, how we do it and why we do it. Central to his message is that to be a leader is to be human and to be an effective leader necessitates understanding ourselves and what drives us.

What do we need to do as leaders? (Picture source)

What we need to do as leaders

  •  We need to be realistic rather than idealistic in terms of what we expect from leadership. This means watching the actions of leaders not just what they say, accepting that leaders sometimes have to do unpleasant things to get good results and that their actions and behaviour should fit their operating reality. Manfred noted that in regard to leadership past leadership behaviour is very predictive of future behaviour.
  • The importance of developing reflective leaders. In order to understand others, we should start by understanding ourselves. Equally before asking others to change we should seek to change ourselves first. We do this by asking ourselves fundamental questions related to who we are and where we want to go. Manfred suggested we jump forward and consider what we would like to be written in our epitaph or eulogy – how would we want to be described? – and use this to review our values and how we want to lead our lives. This exercise also recognises that in understanding and assessing ourselves we cannot separate our public (professional) life and private life.  In fact, Manfred in his programmes does a 720 assessment on the leaders in the room – a 360 at work and a 360 at home.
  • Be cognisant that how we as leaders interact with others is partially define by the attachment orientation, we developed in childhood (secure attachment, anxious attachment or avoidant (dismissive/ fearful) attachment)

Impact of human behaviour

  • Manfred uses the Clinical Paradigm framework to explore the subconscious forces underlying human behaviour. In order to understand why leaders and followers behave as they do we need to understand and unlock these forces. So, for example, an apparently irrational action can have, if we dig deeper into our unconscious, a logical explanation.
  • To move from a 2D view of the world to a 3D view, it is vital to build our emotional intelligence (Knowing our emotions; managing our emotions; recognising emotions in others and managing emotions in others). Listen with your third ear – use yourself as an instrument by developing your EI.

Leadership is the management of dilemmas/ paradoxes

  • Continuing on the theme of subconscious forces and self-awareness, Manfred discussed what drives us to get out of the bed in the morning (fear of meaninglessness, fear of isolation and loneliness and fear of not being in control or not having freedom (independence)
  • When acting beware of conscious versus unconscious resolution – what we consciously commit to can be sabotaged again and again by an unconscious belief.  We need to be aware of the unconscious part in order to change.
  • Leadership incompetence is driven by four reasons (unwillingness to exert authority; bullying behaviour; micromanagement; narcissistic behaviour)
  • The final test of the leader is how well his or her successor does. Great companies are six times more likely to have a successor in place.

Are leaders born or made?

Individuals acquire their leadership style as a result of genetics; significant life experience; the imprint of other executive’s example; life experience and formal development/coaching.

  • Leadership 101: The role of the (silverback) leader is to provide direction; provide protection; provide order.
  • Leadership 201: The role of the (Authentizotic) leader is to provide focus/ vision/ hope; build teams (motivate/inspire others); execute (decisiveness/courage, judgement) and model integrity/trust (walking the talk). Authentizotic leaders create organisations people really want to work in. These organisations are listening, inclusive (we not me), supportive but
    stretching, model leadership and behaviours by example, etc.
  • Be cognisant of the importance of Value Driven Leadership – values can contribute to bringing people in different directions. Values have a central place in Authentizotic organisations and leadership.

Leadership style & attitudes

  • Consider your leadership style versus the Leadership Archetype profiles (The strategist: leadership as a game of chess; The change-catalyst: leadership as a turnaround activity; The transactor: leadership as deal making; The Builder: leadership as an entrepreneurial activity; The Innovator: leadership as creative idea generation; The processor: leadership as an exercise in efficiency; The coach: leadership as a form of people development; The Communicator: leadership as stage management)
  •  The winning attitudes to look for in leaders (Energy: a can-do attitude and passion; Energise: energise people around a common goal; Edge: if something cannot be accomplished, try a creative alternative; Execution) or (Smart, Work hard, Ambitious, Nice)
  • Remember leadership is a team sport.

Dreams and happiness  

  • A dream that hasn’t been interpreted is like a letter that hasn’t been opened!
  • Happiness is influenced by genetics (50%); life circumstances (10%) and intentional activities (conscious framing (40%)
  •  And finally, Manfred’s prescription for happiness – Maintain a supportive network of family members and friends; Manage your envy; Try expressing gratitude and Practice forgiveness.

 

 


 

Mary Meaney is the Head of the Design and Innovation team at the Irish Management Institute.  She has a background in programme design in the telecoms, IT and education sector. The Design and Innovation team is responsible for programme design of tailored and short, Diploma and Masters’ programmes. This involves working closely with clients, Associate faculty and IMI teams to deliver world-class, inspiring and fit-for-purpose learning and development programmes.

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