With all the bestselling books, articles, and training programs on leadership, why are there so many bad and ineffective leaders? I include managers in this question because, according to my definition of management, effective managers should be accomplished leaders. After all, managers get work done through other people, right? It certainly seems logical that leading would be critical in that process. So, back to our question . . .
I wonder if we are just promoting and hiring the wrong people for these positions. In the workplace, followership is not optional. It's contractual. You do your work in return for a pay check. Maybe managers are not inspired to become good leaders. Why bother? But then again, studies demonstrate a relationship between higher performance levels and effective leadership. You would think that managers would embrace leadership.
Maybe there is too much information on leadership out there. It's sort of like the continual publication of diet books and new diets. If any of them really worked, then we wouldn't need so many new ones. Is it possible that we haven't unlocked the key to leadership? Or are we lost in how to apply it on a day-to-day basis?
Or, perhaps, we are all unique and one size does not fit all. Do we need to figure out how to make all the tips on leadership work for us and our personalities. Do we follow a prescribed leadership model or create one that incorporates our strengths and talents?
I am curious what you think. Please join our conversation on the disconnect between what we know about leadership and our ability to practice it well. How do we maneuver through the leadership maze?