I was heartened to read Jack Zenger’s HBR article ‘We Wait Too Long to Train Our Leaders’ as it echoes much of my own perspectives and beliefs.
I shared these in my blog ‘Everyday leadership’ where I posed a few questions around leadership becoming more mainstream, leadership in our everyday daily actions and introducing leadership in schools.
Leadership exists in every aspect of our daily lives through our relationships with others, how we interact, how we communicate, our response to situations, our behaviours and beliefs…Each of us has abundant opportunities 24/7 to demonstrate, practice and build on them.
If these opportunities exist why is it that they are not being taken advantaged of?
I wonder if this is about a lack of understanding and awareness or does the word ‘leadership’ have connotations which seem beyond everyday reach?
For me, the most obvious way for young people to learn about leadership is to see it being role modelled – in their homes, schools, clubs, in the public arena… Young children learn from the actions and behaviours of those around them.
How do ‘people’ learn and develop leadership behaviours and whose responsibility is it? Individuals parents, teachers, employers, government…?
As an individual and parent I believe that we should each take responsibility for the behaviours that we role model to those around us. While some of us may consciously choose to do this, for others it may not be something that they are even aware of.
Which poses the question ‘How do you raise this awareness ’?
To gain widespread awareness and change will require collaborative effort and large scale campaigns such as the Change4Life campaign, to name but a few things. And perhaps less Britain’s got Talent and more ‘Britain’s got Leadership’!
If leadership was on the curriculum in schools, how would it be taught? Discussing and highlighting theories and concepts are useful but limited unless students are given opportunities to put them to the test and practice them. Leadership is very much a journey and thus needs continuous practice.
Teachers will also need to reinforce such leadership behaviours. They can only do this if they themselves have gone through or are going through that leadership journey.
This goes back in full circle to my perspective of everyday leadership and at all levels – its courses through the entire organisation – be it a home, community,school, small business, large organisation or country!
Would love to hear your thoughts and perspectives on this? Do you think leadership should be taught in schools? Do you consciously demonstrate leadership at home?
Image by creativedoxfoto at FreeDigitalPhotos
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Vera is a professional coach (MA in Coaching & Mentoring) helping you to progress, make successful changes, be a more effective leader and communicator, improve your performance and team working. She specialises in working with leaders, teams and women through a blended approach of individual and team coaching, training, facilitation and action learning