Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Still a question - Can you learn to lead?

The conversation about how, or if, we can learn to lead is raised by advocates and cynics alike. The latest version in the New York Times poses responses from Professor Cunliffe at the University of Bradford (UK) who says that leadership is essentially "being passionate about what you do" to that of Professor Van Maanen at MIT (USA) who is quoted as saying that the "idea that (leadership) can be transmitted... is ideologically vacuous." Articles like this continue in the litany of provocations that may eventually lead to concluding that we should give up, or that we have no choice but to try harder. Unfortunate that the author references Joseph Rost as proof that there is no agreement about what leadership really is. Duff McDonald's use of Rost for this purpose declines to acknowledge Rost's more important and prophetic role in proposing that leadership is more than privileged individuals with position and status in comparison to leadership that is often demonstrated as an unfolding dynamic among people seeking to work together toward a common goal.

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