A tough job that needs both women and men If you’re the kind of person who wakes up in the morning feeling like a heroic leader, ready to jump into their super(wo)man suit and save the world, then this article probably isn’t for you. But it should be. Because the working world is becoming more volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA), and no hero can do it alone any more. Organisations are facing unknown monsters and are embarking on great quests with unknowable ends. With so much going on, the job of leadership is simply too tough for individual heroes. Instead we need a more multi-facetted view of leadership in a VUCA world. We need leadership that goes up and down and across organisations, leadership that spans and connects organisations. In a changing world, we need leaders across organisations who can tune into what’s going on, who notice and share what they notice, who can connect with others to make sense, and who can respond in different ways. In a changing world, we need leaders who bring different perspectives and who think differently. While social diversity doesn’t necessarily mean thought diversity, it’s probably a pretty good place to start. Engaging leadership means more leadership, and more diverse leaders. It’s a tough job. And it’s one that needs both women and men. 8th March is International Women’s Day and the rallying cry for 2015 is #MakeItHappen. The question I’m asking is; how do we make an engaging leadership culture happen? A culture where both women and men can flourish as leaders? To develop engaging leadership in organisations, we need more people who see themselves as leaders, who recognise that the qualities they bring that are so valuable in a VUCA world. And we need more people who recognise those leadership qualities in others. To achieve that, here’s what we need to do: ditch the old stereotypes of heroic leaders be far more ambitious about gender diversity in leadership. Ditch the old stereotypes The old might and fight stereotypes of heroic leaders and their younger cousin, the ‘rockstar CEO’, are out of step with the leadership required in a VUCA world. And because these stereotypes tend to value a small...Read More
Leading change in a VUCA world
Working with the dynamic patterning of change is a strategic leadership capability in a VUCA world.
Need help with OD?
With our unique OD partnership service, we build long-term, trusting relationships - even if you just need us for a short time