Leadership develops talent in everyone.

Leadership that deals with social change values everybody and is inclusive. It doesn’t consider talent or potential as a prerogative for a select target group. It doesn’t pigeon-hole people. It takes each and every possible person along in the task to be done. Carol Dweck [i] makes distinction between two mindsets: “In the fixed mindset, everything is about the outcome. If you fail, it’s all been wasted. The growth mindset allows people to value what they’re doing regardless of the outcome.”

The growth mindset is typical for transformational or higher level leaders as different authors [ii] described. They don’t think in dichotomies as have’s and have not’s, right and wrong, in or out. “They tolerate ‘imperfections’ and accept persons as they are,” as Greenleaf [iii] puts it. They struggle to see the full complexity and strive to maximize the potential of the whole. For those leaders effort is ‘inherent to progress’, criticism is information, failure is a side effect of practicing and success comes from hard work.

Any comment?


[i] DWECK, C. (2008). Mindset, the new psychology of success. How we can learn to fulfill our potential. New York: The Random House, 277 p.
[ii]
COLLINS, J. (2001). Good to great: why some companies make the leap, … and others don’t. Harper Business, 300 p.
LOGAN, D., KING, J., & FISCHER-WRIGHT H. (2002). Tribal leadership. New York: HarperCollins Books, 297 p.
CHARAN, R., DROTTER, S. & NOEL, J. (2001). The leadership pipeline. How to build the leadership-powered company. San Fransisco: John Wiley & Sons Inc., 248p.
SCHARMER Otto C. (2009). Theory U: Leading from the future as it emerges. San Fransisco: Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 533 p.
KEGAN, R., and LAHEY L. (2010). Adult developmentt and organizational leadership. In NOHRIA, N., & KHURANA, R. (eds.), Handbook of leadership theory and practice. A Harvard Business School centennial colloquium. Harvard Business Press, p. 769-787.
[iii] GREENLEAF, Robert (2002). Servant Leadership. A journey into the nature of legitimate power & greatness. New Jersey: Paulist Press, 370 p.

About Koen Marichal

Director Future Leadership Initiative at Antwerp Management School
This entry was posted in 19 leadership thoughts, 8. Development & mindset, Academic insights & evidence, English and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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