"Conservative Leadership" vs "Creative Leadership" ?

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January 15th 2008
Published: January 22nd 2008EDIT THIS ENTRY

I was having this thoughts the other days about how people lead other people and about the kind of "leaders" i met during the last 3-4 months. Most leaders that i have seen lately are afraid to step out of their comfort zone, they tend to "play safe" and see where the road takes them in stead of making at least small risks that could bring so much more. Now, observing these in the last months made me think and i started researching a bit my past to see where are the "risk takers" and what is my position to them now. What i have seen is that lately i haven't really met people that will actually take decisions out of their comfort zone and more i have more appreciation for some people that took decisions fast and proved that they can "innovate" than for ppl that played safe all the time. so let's call the ppl that play safe "conservative leaders" and people that are making this risk-creative-innovative decisions/moves "innovators".
Now looking at the image of the two opposite species that i defined i would say that all the people that took decisions out of their comfort zone have been called "CRAZY" in the beginning...believe it or not that is true, i will not go back and debate on well known cases of leadership or great leaders of the world, i will just ask you to take the small examples around you: A 21 yo girl from Ukraine that never went out of the country will go and lead a team of 5 people in an African country for 1 year and be responsible for the future of an all organization, The sales director of a multinational leaves the company because he does not like the person above him and indirectly takes with him half of the sales department, ETC. The second question that hit me is why most of our leaders today are not that innovative, are not stepping out, are not, are not, are not. So i came up with two possible answers, even tho loads of other answers are in my mind...

Version one "fear to fail": Well i think we bring into discussion the "risk taker" topic. Does a leader needs to be a risk taker? at the trainings that i have attended lately this was never brought into discussion even tho it plays an important role in the decision making process and dynamics of the team...i wander why?? Now this fear to fail is even more enabled by the reaction of people.

Version 2: The concept of leader vs manager is not yet defined as it should...employees are receiving leadership trainings that are in opposition with their management preparation and don't know how to act and when to consume their leadership. Now i also saw managers that knew when to be leaders and this because they knew how to combine their management preparation with their own experiences and leadership preparation, but these people have been creative from the beginning...


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