Academic journal article Manager

How to Build a Leader?

Academic journal article Manager

How to Build a Leader?

Article excerpt

1. Introduction

In today's world, the thing we miss the most is leaders who can transmit vision.

One of the reasons for which visionary leadership is so little developed today is determined by the value that our society grants a certain kind of capital: material capital.

The Noble prize laureate for economy, Joseph Stiglitz (2010) says in his book, "In freefall" that "an imminent death experience forces one to reevaluate one's priorities and values. Global economy has just been through such an experience. The crisis has brought forth not only the flaws in the predominant economic model, but also the flaws in our society". And he underlines the fact that: "too little has been written about the fundamental «moral deficit» that has been brought to the surface - a deficit that could be more serious and even harder to correct."

In his own turn, Stephan Young (2008) asserts that this obsession of the material gain has led to the short term thinking and to the narrow following of one's own interests. The contemporary man is dominated by the desire to possess, not by ideals.

Leaders and managers must raise their eyes beyond their own interests and must be able to regard their role as the one of determining the company or society to have moral goals and values, not just profit. They must take responsibility for the world in which they operate and in which they create their wealth. Leaders can give anything up, but responsibility. John D. Rockefeller Jr said: "I believe any right brings with it a responsibility, each favorable opportunity, an obligation; each possession, a debt".

Fry and Slocum (2008) argue that one of the biggest challenges that leaders are nowadays facing is the need of developing new business models that would emphasize ethical leadership, employee welfare, sustainability and social responsibility without sacrificing profitability, profit growth and other financial performance indicators. There is an ever higher need for leaders that are able to maximize at the same time the so called triple crucial factor: "people, planet, profit".

The present paper is structured, after the introduction, in two important sections: the first one aims to comparatively analyze, at a distance of centuries, gestures and examples of good practice regarding the social mechanism by means of which a young person might be calibrated into a leader of his / her generation and to discuss the breaks of the current social system. Beyond the social, historical, cultural perspective, it includes elements of ethology and social anthropology, and the approach will also be built on an analysis which will constitute itself in a prognosis for the future generation, starting from the history of the last 30 years and covering its effects in the present. The second section presents several performance models that, according to the authors' opinion, may contribute to the development of those leaders that society needs so much.

Th most important problem the present approach faces is the lack of specialized bibliography regarding the formation of a leader, something else and in some other area than the politics. The approach is built on complementary works and precise examples offered by history and circumstances that have required rapid interventions in the equation of power.

2. Comparative Analysis between Civilizations and Generations

Every leader has and develops a double reaction capacity. One is determined by the cultural heritage of the social framework in which they are formed and the other is represented by the potential of building up the level of one's received knowledge. We can offer comparative examples between civilizations which are technologically competing against each other. One of the most inventive societies in history was the Medieval Europe which, until 1800 was under Asia's counterpart economic strength. But what worked here more was the urban particularity of this civilization and within it, the freedom of choice, the right of innovation and the access to power through merit and performance. …

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