Some scholars define leadership as a process, focused on achieving goals through others; the influence of other people through different varieties of power combined with the responsibility of delivering on goals. A broad definition lays ground for different theories, approaches, and views. These include personal- , strategic- , administrative- ideological- , situational-, emotional-, authentic, transformational- , relational- , operational management , and many, many more.
In this program, however, we will not touch upon most of these theories. We view, work with and practice leadership at a practical, operational and personal level.
LEADERS ARE HUMANS
Our starting point in the program is you as a human being, a flawed and imperfect human being. In our view, all leaders are also flawed and imperfect. We aim to destabilize the concept of the leader, and rather focus on leadership as a relational process and the act of taking responsibility for some of the problems we face together.
KNOWING DOING GAP
Ann Cunliffe, professor of organisation Studies in Leeds is highly critical of the concept of leadership as something that can be taught, as are we in Future Leaders.
Cunliffe has studied MBA programs worldwide, and how they develop leaders. The results show that far too often programs and studies focus on theory, with little room for participants to adapt what they learn reflexively. Jeffrey Pfeffer, a professor in organisational behaviour at Stanford explains how this has been shown to have a negative effect on leadership development, as people learn the ideal way to lead, but rather seldom, manage to apply it when they graduate, which is shown to increase what Jeffrey calls a knowing-doing gap and apathy.The Future Leaders program is designed to close the knowing-doing gap, though emphasis on practical and contextual learning.
The program is anchored in critical management studies, deep learning and complexity theory. Through personal system-two reflections, participants develop their own evolving strategies for self-leadership, leadership and navigation in complex contexts. Our focus lays on developing personal strategies through testing, challenging, learning and iterating, aligned with where you are in your life, the people you work with and the context in which you operate.
The program is not aimed at handing out simplified objective truths about leadership. We view leadership development as a life-long learning process where you consciously learn through a combination of experience and reflection. The structure, support-system, relations and content are all designed to aid you in developing this process.