Posts Tagged 'TranspersonalLeadership'



Indian Leaders are short on Emotional Intelligence! (says Management Next)

  lshape MNJohn Knights finds Indian leaders to be on par or even better than many global leaders in most aspects of leadership, yet, according to ManagementNext’s interpretation of his article there’s something amiss which make them behave the way they do – centralize decision-making, don’t respect other’s time, hence don’t confirm schedules, among a few. If Indian leaders were to invest in acquiring emotional intelligence, they have the opportunity to maximise their potential.

EACH TIME I LAND in Mumbai or Delhi or elsewhere in India, I feel a rush of adrenalin. I am here again to meet business leaders ranging from elite companies to start- ups – but they all have one thing in common; they are interested in how ‘leadership development’ can improve their business performance.

As I
 drive to my hotel to get some shut-eye before the first meeting I reflect on
the fact that only 30% of my agenda is confirmed but I know from experience that it will all work out and I will have a number of interesting meetings I
am not yet aware of. The mood that engulfs me is immediately optimistic, enthusiastic, friendly, open-minded and can-do. That is the effect India has on me – and these are all important characteristics for a nation on the up
– and also necessary to overcome the many serious challenges it faces.

So what about leadership in Indian businesses? And critically, what about its impact on sustainability? I see three themes that are particularly important for India at this point in time. They relate to ‘structure’, ‘process’ and, most important of all, ‘behaviour.’

Continue reading ‘Indian Leaders are short on Emotional Intelligence! (says Management Next)’

Are women better entrepreneurs?

LEADING SELF-MADE WOMEN entrepreneurs earn 17% more than the top men. However, top corporate women earn 21% less than their male equivalents – according to recent research from Barclays Wealth & Investment Management Survey.

This suggests that if we remove the cultural restraints of the male dominated corporate world, women perform better than men in the 21st century. It is interesting to also note that 6% of British women are entrepreneurs (up from 4% in 2008) compared to 12% of men and 10% of women in America.

According to this research woman entrepreneurs take fewer bank loans than men in the same position, own companies that are more likely to be sustainable, and are more driven by a work-life balance than generation of wealth.

This is consistent with LeaderShape’s experience of conducting many 360º LEIPA Assessments and coaching women leaders.  Women probably have naturally more of the attributes of leadership needed in the 21st century, but they need to overcome a few barriers to help them make the most of their potential. Continue reading ‘Are women better entrepreneurs?’

Can Mindfulness Increase Productivity?

Having drawn us away from our blackberry-addicted inattentive selves we were asked to focus on the day ahead, to be mindful of what we intended and what was involved.  We were quietly led away from immediate distractions into a deeper reality where we focused first on the simple physical realities like our breathing and then into reflection on what was important and joyful in our lives. What I feel was special about Rohan’s approach was that it was balanced between the calming and the purposeful..” Mark Goyder, Founder, Tomorrow’s Company

Can mindfulness increase productivity?

Businesses are being asked to do more for less. Many organisations are reducing staff numbers, whilst expecting remaining staff to provide the same or a better level of service. The mindful workplace is gaining popularity in leadership development and executive coaching with forward-thinking public and private sector firms such as Transport for London, Google, Harvard Business School, Pricewaterhouse Coopers, the Home Office and Toyota. It has even engendered discussions in the Daily Telegraph.

Mindfulness offers new ways of thinking and working to help meet the demands of the 21st century workplace. It can help people learn to manage their own minds, to improve workplace resilience, focus and concentration, leading to improved performance and productivity. It’s like training a muscle – training attention to where you want it to be.  A large volume of research and the new body of neuroscience support its use in finding space in a frantic world.

What is mindfulness?

Mindfulness has been shown to have significant effects in dealing with challenging situations through creating a specific mental and physical state. Increasingly it is being used in companies to improve communication, reduce stress and aid creativity.  A route to this outcome is through a continuous practice of carefully paying attention, in a particular way and on purpose. Practitioners may learn to slow down or stop brain chatter and automatic or habitual reactions.

The science

Mindfulness is at the heart of authoritative clinical approaches to stress reduction and the treatment of depression.  Known as  MBCT,  Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy is part of a UK national template set out by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE.)   Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) follows similar principles and practices.  Other scientific evidence shows proven impacts on the mind and body, following a range of mindfulness processes.

Read more about the neuroscience and how we can learn to regulate our actions by controlling the Pre-Frontal cortex (PFC).

 

What does the programme in business involve?

Find out how mindfulness training might work within your organisation incorporating:

  • Short mindfulness session as part of a coaching or workshop session to help focus and to leave unhelpful distractions behind.
  • A programme enabling individuals to identify their own preferred mindful practices and supporting development into a positive habit
  • Longer mindfulness sessions or workshops to help embed mindful practices in a department or organisation.

Contact LeaderShape to discuss the expertise we can bring to you in this area.

Are Women the Best Leaders for the 21st Century?

From John Knights – Chairman, LeaderShape:

Follow on Twitter https://twitter.com/@leadershapejohn

Recent research publicised in the UK’s The Sunday Times, sourced from Barclays Wealth & Investment Management Survey  http://thetim.es/14ne1Jt explains that the top self-made women (entrepreneurs) earn more than the top men by 17% whereas the top corporate women leaders earn 21% less than their male equivalents.

This suggests that if we remove the cultural restraints of the male dominated corporate world, women perform better than men in the 21st century. It is interesting to also note that 6% of women in the UK are entrepreneurs (up from 4% in 2008) compared to 12% of men in the UK and 10% of women in the USA.

According to this research woman entrepreneurs – compared to equivalent men – take less bank loans, own companies that are more likely to be sustainable, and are more driven by a work-life balance than generation of wealth.

I am not surprised by these findings (even though they are not beyond question) as it is consistent with my own experience  of conducting many 360o LEIPA Assessments and coaching women leaders (more than men over the last 5 years).  I do believe women probably have naturally more of the “softer” attributes of leadership needed in the 21st century, but they need to overcome a few barriers to help them make the most of their potential.

Our own research at LeaderShape analysed in detail the data from our LEIPA 360o Assessment tool LEIPA of 97 leaders.   This shows there is little difference between male and female leaders in the eyes of the people who work with and for them – although again this could be to some extent because of the different expectations raters have of men and women. This is generally supported by neuroscience which so far shows little difference between male and female brains except related to reproductive functions.

Analysing 92 statements covering 19 emotional intelligence capabilities we only found a significant difference in two of the 19. In Emotional Self Control, men seemed to do better (although on further interrogation it could be that men can more effectively hide their emotions rather than manage them better in a more positive way).

The one area where women are superior is in Service Orientation.

The definition of “Service Orientation” according to Goleman et al (The New Leaders, 2002) is:

Leaders high in the service competence foster an emotional climate so that people directly in touch with the customer or client will keep the relationship on the right track. Such leaders monitor customer or client satisfaction carefully to ensure they are getting what they need. They also make themselves available as needed.

This specifically identifies women as better at customer service and client care (including internal customers) – an absolute essential to a successful and sustainable business.

Surprisingly (to us) women did not feature as better at Empathy than men. This maybe again be due to the expectation of raters but a more likely explanation is that where for many men understanding other people is not high on the agenda, women often confuse it with sympathy – ie. the focus is on sharing another person’s feeling rather than understanding them. In a business environment understanding how someone feels and why can be much more powerful in helping that person towards solutions as compared to sharing their emotions.

A critical aspect of successful leadership where women need to improve is Self-Confidence. And here I am talking about an inner self confidence (“I am happy with who I am”) rather than the macho definition of “I’m the greatest”.

My own qualitative view based on working with many women leaders is that women themselves are generally much less self-confident than the perception they give to the outside world. This is true of many men also but not to the same extent. Women tend to care very much about what people think and say about them (stone-age instincts around their nurturing and community role) and are often anxious about that – whereas men tend to care less. A good driver of course for why women are so service-oriented.

In fact, we have found that a 360o assessment process for a competent woman can be the most valuable intervention of all to increase self-confidence, as it provides proof and reassurance that the people around them think they are operating to a high quality. I have seen many women really blossom as leaders after completing a 360o assessment. Even better if it is part of an integrated  coaching, leadership development and/or women’s peer group programme.

Women also tend to be more dedicated than men at working on their development areas. This often positively impacts their approach to change, risk and conflict.

We are currently expanding the number of leaders for the basis of our research and specifically focusing more on the aspects of self-confidence.

But any future results are unlikely to change my view that a good mixture of men and women make the best leadership teams even if the women have “less experience” as they make up for it with common sense and intuition ..… as long as they have the confidence to speak up!!!

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Leadership: The Catch 22 of High Performance Management

The markets and shareholders of private organisations require high performance which provide results in the short term – consistently, every quarter.  This causes the leaders to develop performance management processes which will “ensure” all employees operate at a higher and higher level. The focus is on results.

The senior executives’ remuneration packages are based on strong financial performance. So even if the CEO and their team are ethical and not egocentric they understand where the focus has to be. But is this approach sustainable in the 21st Century?

Continue reading ‘Leadership: The Catch 22 of High Performance Management’

Go East Young (Wo)Man – to India

I have just returned from Mumbai after an inspiring week meeting with senior business leaders at a conference on ‘Success through Corporate Sustainability’.

In contrast to the UK, Europe and the US, India is optimistic and there is a real buzz where their business people see a huge opportunity for growth. What is most noteworthy though amongst the business people I met is the importance they are putting on ‘the community’. They understand that sustainable growth in India depends on them sorting out the problems of the community where they are active.

Continue reading ‘Go East Young (Wo)Man – to India’

Values = Personal Conscience + Self Determination

Two insights came today while in Mumbai.

I was given a book by Anant Nadkarni (my friend from Tata who is VP for Group Corporate Sustainability) called ‘Power & Love’ by Adam Kahane and later he talked about ‘Integrity and Courage’ as someone’s definition of good leadership.

1st insight is described in the blog; Teachers vs Learners.

The 2nd insight was that these pairs of words offered by Anant fit like a glove with our Transpersonal Leadership definition of Values (as defined in our 8ICOL model) which are broken down into Personal Conscience and Self Determination. Love and Integrity fit into the Personal conscience space whereas Power and Courage are Self Determination characteristics.

So to describe a leader, you do need to have both elements: “Who I am” and “What I am going to do with it”.

John Knights