Why Real Leaders Don’t Care About Titles Or Formalities

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As leadership is so important, and needs to change, how about this one? Dean Williams, author of the newly released book Leadership for a Fractured World and professor at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, published an exciting article in Fast Company offering new viewpoints on leadership that are highly relevant to today’s fractured world.

Leadership for a fractured world is a complex topic, and no single theory can do it justice.

Traditional leadership that relies on prominence (“look to me”), dominance (“listen to me”), and tribalizing (“follow me”) to get things done isn’t working anymore. Instead the best leaders are global change agents; they’re men and women who can act with or without formal positional authority to mobilize diverse factions to face reality, participate in interdependent problem solving, and contribute to innovative solutions with focus and speed.

The ILF agrees that a different skill set is required to ‘create the best mixture’ out of innovation teams. This need becomes even more evident in the graph shown below. The graph illustrates that while the rate of the introduction of change has increased exponentially in many areas (including human awareness), leadership does not seem to keep pace with this – so desperately needs to catch up!  The graph is from the book ‘Complex Adaptive Leadership’ by Nick Obolensky who is a member of the ILF Wider Community and ran an ‘Innovation Leadership Event‘ for us in 2010.


Original article published by Fast Company on the 2nd of April 2015 by Dean Williams. Read the full article here

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