Team Leadership: Stone Age Management fights back
The Apprentice (BBC TV) which showcases the management style of Alan Sugar, founder and chairman of Amstrad, implies that aggressive leadership is the real secret of business success. However Sally Bibb, author of The Stone Age Company, contends that much of the success achieved by such leaders is in spite of rather than a result of their ‘no-prisoners’ style.
Bibb argues that were they to adopt more collaborative styles they would be even more successful.
For example research in JIm Collins book Good to Great of what differentiated companies who achieved 7 times the stock returns of the pack showed that a major factor was leaders who demonstrated “extreme personal humility and intense professional goodwill”.
If fact we may be doing our ancestors a great disservice in labelling a leadership style as "Stone Age" as Virtual team anthropology shows Palaeolithic societies had the practice of pooling their human capital simply to survive with leadership rotates according to the task at hand.
To read Sally's full article see Tough at the top.
Bioteams Books Reviews
I have been thinking a lot about what happens when a leader gets under severe pressure, usually because things are not going according to plan. It seems to me this is the very essence of real leadership and where leaders can really justify their salaries. BUT according to Professor Dietrich Dorner, in his excellent book The Logic Of Failure: Recognizing And Avoiding Error In Complex Situations, there are two very tempting but ultimately disastrous tangents a leader can pursue in a crisis instead of addressing the real issues.