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Leadership Today In today's world, organizations operate in an environment of intense competition and very rapid rates of change. These operating features place unprecedented demands on both the organization and its leaders. Even the brightest group of people needs savvy, experienced leadership to succeed. There are many concepts put forward about leadership. Many of them provide similar concepts about what makes an effective leader - trust, relationships, vision and a new way of being. Be it a private business or government agency, it is critical for organizations to optimize the effectiveness of its leaders, its teams and their synergies.
It means creating high levels of performance and dynamic cultures; teams that demonstrate openness, trust, accountability and alignment of focus. Leadership is a well-used term that means many things to many people. It is about taking people to places that they would not go by themselves. Here are some of my ideas that I'd like to share with you of my way of looking at leadership and what makes an effective leader in multicultural society. So, everyone should understand what organizational culture entails and how best to form / maintain a "good" culture. According to John Kotter in "Rethinking the Future, " leaders tend to understand culture more than managers.
Thus, leadership may be required to avoid clash of cultures, refrain from arrogance, find and eliminate weak spots in the culture, provide an example to the overall organization, and keep the smaller parts in sync to maintain a positive organizational culture across offices in different locations. First, there are many facets to a great leader and all of them are based on the leader's network of relationships. Fundamental to effective relationships is trust and, above all else, to become an effective leader in todays reality, one must be trustworthy and build trust with others. Effective leaders understand that trust is based on assessments of past actions. They are sincere and mean what they say.
They "walk the talk." They are competent at what they do. Their employees know that they can do what they say they can do. They are reliable. They understand the promise cycle. They are clear in their requests and offer, allow for negotiation of those requests and offer in the context of defined organizational priorities and then manage their promises effectively.
They recognize that once lost, trust is hard to recover and so they work hard to maintain the trust that they have built. Since leaders manage what could be, they are able to design organizations that are capable of adapting to the rapidly increasing change of the business environment. Those organizations are flexible and focused. An effective leader sees their organization as a network of relationships and has the conversational skills to build those relationships having in mind controversy in employees cultures. They know that the right conversation at the right time and in the right mood will build relationships. They know that the wrong conversation will damage them.
They have an understanding of language distinctions and the active nature of language and utilize these in the conversations that they have. Next, effective leaders recognize that to manage what could be, they must interrupt their "busyness" in order to reflect and speculate. They need to step away from the day to day pressures to see the forest from the trees. They also recognize that breakdowns present opportunities and that the bigger the breakdown the greater the potential for learning and transformations.
Therefore, they do not punish mistakes but see them as opportunities for learning and growth. An effective leader is able to anticipate or create shifts in the paradigms in which their organization operates. They recognize that we are all unique observers and that there are many different viewpoints within their organization. They tap those views to generate paradigm shifts. They then have the conversational skills to create new realities for people and to shift their organization in ways that they adopt the new paradigm and make quantum leaps forward. An effective leader has to have employees who personify the mission and values of the organization...
They are people who are fully committed to what the organization wants to achieve. They know that commitment comes from the heart, not the head and that personal commitment is an embodied way of being and an emotional acceptance of a way of doing business. Therefore an effective leader understands how to tap into the fundamental mood of their organization and to intervene and influence in ways that develop a mood of ambition for the future throughout the organization. They also have to understand the vital role that each individual's emotional state plays in their ability to learn at any point in time. They know that certain moods and emotions enhance learning and they seek to establish that emotional context to enhance their systematic learning programs. When I think back to when I entered the organization that I work for the first time at the time, I did not get a real sense very often of what it is like to work for the organization from the people that I met.
Trying to remember whether they were bright and happy to be at work or if I got a sense that they were there under sufferance. Given that this mood would be a predisposition for the action that could occur within that organization, it may well not be conducive to the actions that are needed. We are all subject to our moods and emotions and the impact they can have on an organization, it seems that moods and emotions are one of the domains that the noted organizational consultant Chris Argyris calls the "un discussable" within organizations. Given that moods and emotions are so important to an organization, they become a critical aspect of leadership today. Blindness to a mood is not restricted to individuals and can also apply to an organization. Good leaders need to be attuned to the mood within their organization.
Once they recognize the mood, they need to understand what is possible and not possible for the organization within that emotional space. If they feel that the mood is not conducive to outcomes they seek to achieve, they then need to intervene and change the organizational mood. The people who can influence most people regardless their nationality, religion, age within an organization are its leaders today because, just as children learn attitudes and behaviors from watching their parents or care givers, so we learn from our leaders. However, just as leaders would like the organization to catch their mood, the reverse also applies. They can catch the mood of the organization.
To avoid this, good leaders need a well thought out vision. However, in too many organizations that vision tends to only sit with the senior executives. The key to the vision is its clear definition of a future that is meaningful to all. It has to be a powerful declaration that is heard, understood and acknowledged consistently by the whole organization. In other words, the leader must speak the vision often and from a genuine and positive mood. I believe that the organizational leaders are the key to creating the organizational mood or climate.
Finally, on the other side of the coin, many leaders have difficulty trusting those that they seek to lead. In general, this mistrust is an untested assessment. In other words, the lack of trustworthiness is assumed because of a general sense of not trusting others. Because of this mistrust or at least prudence, many leaders resort to establish either covert or overt control systems in their management style - interviewing, interrogating, telling and explaining. Unfortunately this may have the opposite effect than that desired by a leader, if they are seeking to be trusted by others. It creates an environment where employees feel that indeed they are not trusted, which in turn breeds resentment and erodes the very trust that leaders seek to establish.
The difficulty for many leaders is that this tendency to not trust others is transparent to them. They do not see it in themselves and are not aware of this attitude to others. For many leaders, breaking this transparency is the first step to establishing higher assessments of trust in their relationships. Promises are the key to establishing and maintaining trust.
Every time that you make a promise, it will have an impact on your future relationship with the others who are involved. A promise that is kept or well managed will enhance your relationship. A promise that is broken or poorly managed will sour it. In the first instance, many people will trust you, but you can quickly erode this trust and once lost it is very, very hard to recover. In conclusion, culture needs leaders that know how to significantly enhance innovations and creativity in business; influence mood, climate, culture and morale in organizations. Effective leaders know that with increasing commitment and trust will come empowered staff...
The owner, entrepreneur, director, manager, must examine the organization's cultural structure and find ways to pragmatically incorporate this desire. Owners, entrepreneurs, directors, or managers, all must have an awareness of the role culture plays in organizations while working on eliminating oppression. Many people like to say that Australia is not a melting pot of cultures any more, rather it is a salad bowl. Sowell makes this claim in his article Diversity's Downside. He further goes on to say that diversity is a bad thing. I strongly disagree with Mr.
Sowell's claims on multiculturalism, that broad multiculturalism is bad. Diversity is what holds us together, it produces a certain wonder and respect for other people. Imagine a world with only one culture; for example imagine a world all like the US, no Far East to satisfy our fantasies and curiosities. It would indeed be a dismal and grim world if we were all like, talked the same way, only one language In his article, Sowell states that until recent times, it was understood by all that they came here to become Americans not to remain foreign. By the second generation, most were speaking English, and by the third generation they were speaking only English.
This is not necessarily true, in the beginning days of the United States of America, the people who emigrated here slowly became Americans, but they still had their foreign identities. Some immigrants from certain countries have kept their traditions and culture to this day and it has not caused a problem. Furthermore, Sowell claims that the reasons of civil unrest in culturally diverse situations are group identity and group preferences. Above all they want group identity and group preferences and quotas. In short, they want all the things that have brought on the kinds of disasters from which India and other such diverse countries have suffered so grievously. This is not true, because even though sure there are cultural differences, the thing that causes problems is pride.
When pride says that one group is better than another, the group that is put down resorts to violence to prove that they are indeed better. It is hubris that causes racial and cultural tension. For example the KKK was created out of pride that one certain race was better than another, this created racial tension. It is not group rights or even group identity thats the problem; it is pride that germinates in our mind that corrupts the world and opens the doors of violence. I can say from personal experience that it is not cultural diversity that causes tension between people. In India the tension and violence is not caused by the diversity, religious ambition and political leaders cause it.
Almost everything there is based on politics the political parties and leadership are mostly religious and the ambitions of the leaders are followed mindlessly. Furthermore the religious groups have pride that they are better and it is non-tolerance that causes all the problems. Only if people were more sensitive to others cultures and rituals there would be many less problems. Sowell's perception of diversity is not true wholly. Without diversity we would not be the same human race. It is not diversity or identity of groups that cause violence; it is human nature fueled by pride and contempt for other groups.
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