Beyond the leader-follower dichotomy

We live in an age of volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity.  We will not transcend the challenges of this world with the type of leaders or the leadership development strategies that led us here.  New methods are being developed to improve and expand our collective leadership capacity.  We are beginning to transcend the false and hierarchical dichotomy where the people at the top of the power pyramid are leaders, and the rest of the pyramid are expected to be followers.  We need to scale cultural and social transformation in rapid and high impact ways. We are facing the end of leadership and follower-ship and the emergence of ‘everyone leads.’

The reality of human experience is that we all lead, from time to time.  When we recognize that there is something inherent in human nature to lead, new opportunities for collective action become available.  History has been dominated by cultures of leadership that divide and rank human beings into leaders and followers.  Traditionally leadership has been associated with hierarchies and power over others.  But power is not confined to people with positions at the top of the power pyramids. Everyone has power.  The “end of leadership” (Kellerman, 2012) coincides with the emergence of democracy and the evolution of human development.  Power imbalances contribute to many of the wicked problems facing our world.  The end of authoritarian forms of leadership are, and will be, creating space for the emergence of new mindsets about leading and following.

The leadership development that we seek (where everyone leads) is emerging through trans-disciplinary explorations that include: the stages of human development, stages of spiritual transformation or consciousness, evolutionary psychology, theories of transformative education, neuroscience, and ancient transformative disciplines such as alchemy.  The next level of transformation in developing our collective capacity to lead social change is integral; weaving intellect and spirit, reasoning and intuition, secular and sacred, and individual and collective practices.

Robyn Morrison provides co-leadership development services to individuals and organizations.  She has developed tools and programs to catalyze the leadership potential throughout a work team or movement.  Contact Robyn for more information if you are looking to create a highly engaged and empowered team or movement.

[contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *