As I was climbing through the ranks in an ad agency, all management training was geared around becoming a better ‘Leader’. Who wanted to do a course on management? That was for the losers – and in London’s top ad agency everyone expected to get to the top.
The management style a decade or two ago was a much more hierarchical affair – the boss dictated what had to be done and the workers did it.
Thank goodness it has changed. Now more than ever we work in cross functional teams, comprised of ‘experts’ from different fields – there is less emphahsis of an emperor, all ‘knowing’ style of management – it is now much more about a collective, with shared discussion and decision making. It is about everyone being equals and treated with greater respect than of old.
Leadership is an anathema. Its principles rely on an outdated paradigm of superiroirt and blind obeyance to order and authority. The best leaders I have come across ‘lead’ through managing a team really well. If you feel acknowledged, trusted, listened to and respected, THEN people will want to follow you.
So, to all trainers and talent directors, stop running ‘leadership’ courses and start running courses that truly respect people.