Collaborative Leadership?

Recent events have caused me to reflect on what it means to be a leader. Is it power? Is leadership more effective with a dictatorial hand? Websters defines leadership as “the act or an instance of leading.” So what is leading? “…providing direction or guidance.”

Burzio’s definition of leadership includes providing a framework from which to guide and facilitate the growth of individuals in pursuit of the organizational goal. This idea is sometimes completely lost. Whether it’s the stress of performing or the arrogance of position, some in leadership lose sight of where they are and what they are doing. How do we learn to lead with grace and humility? And what is Collaborative Leadership?

Collaborative Leadership is

“Leadership shown by a group that is acting collaboratively to solve agreed upon issues.

It uses supportive and inclusive methods to ensure that all people affected by a decision are part of the change process.

It requires a new notion of power…the more power we share, the more power we have to use.”

I read a great article from the Harvard Business Review, Are You a Collaborative Leader?  The article gives many excellent points to ponder, but this stood out to me…”Collaboration does not equate Consensus.”  I’ve written previously on Communities of Practice and I like to think I live and work in building community…collaborating, but I do recognize there are times when I slide into the “command and control” role. What is different now than 10 years ago is that I recognize now when I am moving towards demanding and commanding and dial it back.

Thinking on the organizations you work or volunteer with, what leadership style is in practice?  Take a look at the Collaborative Leadership Learning Modules, there are great FREE resources within the site  to assist in your own personal growth as a leader.

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