The Australian Institute of Management bring their vision of “Better Managers and Better Leaders for a Better Society” to life with the research they do and programs they offer that broaden the awareness and build skills into executives and businesses. One such research by Dr Malcolm Johnson is a discussion paper “Beyond Belief : The Management Reality of Generational Thinking” spotlighting the generational debate focusing on young “Gen Y” Leaders and best summed up by :
Dr Johnson concludes the report with
The report focused on the development of our young leaders, and for those charged with the mentoring and development of them to lead them as individuals, not based on a stereotype of their relevant generation perception. And I am in 100% agreement.
Attempting to lead people based on a perception and stereotype is fraught with danger with the threat of disengagement and lack of growth being negative outcomes of such practices. Leadership isn’t easy and in most cases not a natural thing for everybody. Building true leadership comes from a desire to serve people and this is highlighted by this report and so many times from history. Recommendations of quality individual conversations and discussions are referenced often and this is simply the mark of better leadership. One rule for all, may work in some situations for low-skilled employees or routine work, but to truly engage the best qualities of your people, the need is clear to bring them in as an individual, add value and development to them and watch them blossom.
In our Free 10 Day Leadership Training” (get it here) we explore some of the traits that great leaders have. While not exhaustive research, we find similarities between the conclusions from the Beyond Belief research and our beliefs in the make-up of great leaders. We state in the book that a great leader:
The research validates theses beliefs and of our values-based leadership coaching programs.. Great Leaders always build trust and rapport with their people, find ways and means to add meaningful development and inspire them into action and their achievement of results. Great leaders do not use a cookie-cutter approach to people or teams based on generalizations and perceptions. They demonstrate true care for their people and they add value to them by serving them.
The thought I leave you all with is this.
Fads come and fads go, but the basic values-based principles of leadership hold true after many years. What sort of leader are you? One enslaved by the latest and the greatest or the one founded on solid principles with the view to keep growing and learning. Leading by perception of the difference of the Generational Stereotype is simply a fad! Treat people as individuals, acknowledge and welcome their uniqueness and watch them blossom and grow.
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