We have been sold a myth: that good, successful leaders are fiercely competitive battlers. The aggressive combative leaders we have been taught to admire actually hold a deep seated anxiety that they and their world have a profoundly unbalanced power relationship. That their world is an actual or potential threat. Drawing from his book “How successful leaders do business with their world”, as well as conversations with top leaders, author and coach-mentor Stephen Barden argues that truly successful leaders, those who act on behalf of their entire constituencies, have learned that they and their worlds are partners with a manageable power balance. That their power lies in that balance. (Theme music: "Celtic Spirit" by Julius H. from Pixabay)
Lessons from a working-class, female leader: why diversity isn't enough
In this episode, I sat down with financial sector leader Jenny Knott to discuss how deceptive the drive to diversity can be.
How can we ensure that diversity really means inclusivity and does not end up being the status quo in another guise? We also talked about her own challenges in being recognised - not just as a woman but as a working class woman: born, educated and developed outside the clubs and norms of the corporate elite.
David Lane Interviews Stephen Barden About Leadership
David Lane of the Professional Development Foundation interviews Stephen Barden about the research for his new book How Successful Leaders Do Business with Their World: The Navigational Stance.
A conversation with Manfred Kets De Vries, Professor of leadership development and organizational change at INSEAD,
I recently sat down with the author of the“CEO Whisperer” and Insead distinguished professor Manfred F.R Kets De Vries whose fascinating work focuses on leaders, leadership and the dynamics of individual and organisational change.
As we both spend much of our time dealing with leadership, top teams and corporate leaders, we had a lot to discuss.
The myths and nonsense of leadership traits
Leadership coaches inundate us with advice on "What great leaders do" or "The 6 characteristics of a good leader" or "The 14 leadership Traits" or, pick a number, "The 5 habits of great leaders."
Even if they are all entirely true, what use are they? Do aspiring leaders, simply have to mimic these sacred qualities. Are we asking them to be good actors or impersonators? Is that why there is so much talk about "leadership style" - because it's about performing rather than doing the job?
In excerpts from his controversial book, "How Successful Leaders do Business with their World", https://www.stephenbarden.org/books/ , Stephen Barden argues that leadership is never about acting - or adopting a so called leadership style. It is a hard job that requires deep learning and an apprenticeship in managing ourselves in our world. And very successful leaders start that learning a long time before they get to the top.
Battles, Balance and the Fastest Kid in Florida
In episode 2 of the series, Stephen Barden talks to Lieutenant General (Ret) Ben Hodges, Pershing Chair in Strategic Studies at the Centre for European Policy Analysis, to find out whether the US army, which - like all armies is built for conflict - has any room for balanced, partnering leaders. Or is it possible that, all the while, its ability to largely stand back from partisan politics and its stability as an institution has been down to it jealously guarding its...Power of Balance?
Let's talk about power
Coach mentor and author Stephen Barden introduces this podcast series,
"The Power of Balance". In this first episode he argues that the childhood assumption we form about the power balance we hold with our worlds, affects every aspect of our lives. Understanding this, begins to open a door on why we do the things we do.
"Having insight into why our leaders behave as they do is only half the issue; understanding why we elect them is probably much more important.
Understanding why our bosses tell us to do things at work which we’d never even consider doing in our families and communities is one thing; understanding why we actually go ahead and do them is another."