The dark side of psychological shared leadership

“Can an organization be too divergent?” asked a middle manager of a large bank me in a development journey? He was taking up the role of Facilitating Adaptability a lot lately.  And the answer seems yes. I’ve seen it in several organizations that promote shared leadership. The top keeps repeating their mantra ‘everybody is leader’, […]

The dark side of psychological shared leadership

The dark side of psychological shared leadership “Can an organization be too divergent?” asked a middle manager of a large bank me in development journey? He was taking up the role of Facilitating Adaptability a lot lately.  And the answer seems yes. I’ve seen it in several organizations that promote shared leadership. The top keeps […]

Hobbies of executives

The other day I was reading the hobbies of several C-level executives. And once again I found the usual suspects: cooking, history, art, classical music, old-timers, wine, golf, walking in the mountains … I’ve always wondered, do they do this because it is just part of the social class they belong to (cf. Bourdieu)? Or […]

Beauty & leadership development? The case of photography & dance

Leadership development starts with developing as a human being. The classical Greek philosophers such as Plato discussed already the properties of being: Beauty, Goodness  & Truth. So, in a way I’m the business of Beauty, Goodness & Truth. As a scientist Truth is the obvious one, and as a leadership scholar Goodness as well, but […]

Shared leadership in the board room

“A shared or distributed leadership model is better suited for guiding companies that are facing more uncertain, more changing, and more complex markets “(p.23) is what is argued in the book ‘Boards that lead. When to take charge, when to partner, and when to stay out of the way from’ (2014). Although it is clear […]

From expert to leader of experts: “losing my religion”.

Paul was a brilliant young engineer when he started in the IT network department of an international utility company. He soon became key in the team of network designers and when the department grew, he was elected team leader. By the age of 33, Paul was network manager with an undisputed reputation of network expertise. […]

I’m a fraud

I’m a fraud, or at least that is how I feel sometimes when I’m driving home after a day of work. It is only a matter of time before they will discover that I’m not up to the job.  I’ve heard these sentences 5 times over the last 2 weeks. And they all came from […]

Nelson Mandela: master not slave of group identity

Leadership is mobilizing others to take responsibility for necessary changes . But who is able to mobilize others? Who turns out to be the ‘natural’ leader of a group ? Who is the Nelson Mandela of each group ? Scientific studies have shown time and again that it is the person who best represents the […]

(Shared) Leadership & happiness

80% of our interactions with our supervisors are positive, and only 20% are negative. The bad news is that the effects of negative interactions on our mood are 5 times stronger (Miner et al., 2005). As a result the net effect of interacting with our supervisors is often negative. We experience less positive emotions with […]

Listening is not about understanding the other, but about making the other feel understood

Being silent has an impact for the good or for the worse. Dave Ulrich made clear in his HR masterclass in Brussels that the loudest feedback is silence. Saying nothing when you ought to speak is approving the other’s bad behavior. But if being silent means that you are listening, nothing but good will happen. […]

New Research: What Sets Effective Middle Managers Apart

Once more a study shows that middle managers who act as middle leaders are next to senior managers the most important determinants for innovation/change in organizations today.  Read this Harvard business review blog post on some great research: http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2013/05/reinventing_middle_management.html?referral=00563&cm_mmc=email-_-newsletter-_-daily_alert-_-alert_date&utm_source=newsletter_daily_alert&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=alert_date

Middle managers & leadership – part 4 – results of the Leadership for Middle Management program

As mentioned here and here, the role of the middle manager is transforming to the point that they may be the most important people in your company today (Mollick, 2011). There are a multitude of reasons for this, but just to mention two: 1)      More horizontal structures increase the importance of middle managers in achieving […]