Hi again, dear Readers. Now that I am through with my temporary work at the little school with the Danish kids, my thoughts are beginning to become clearer again, and I return to my blog with some fresh perspectives. In specific, I am considering ideas along the lines of circle leadership, tribal leadership or simply new models of leadership in our world. I would like to explore this topic over several blog entries, and am, as always, glad and interested to hear your comments, stories, and opinions on this important topic.
Some basic questions to frame this subject could be: What kind of leadership is needed most in the world now? How do we define leadership at this crossroads time in humanity’s evolution? How do gender roles play into a new paradigm of leadership? Is tribal leadership a better model than hierarchical ones? Is the circle model best? What examples should we look towards for inspiration? What are the highest goals and long-term objectives that societies ought to be focused on for the near and not-so-near future? And perhaps the most significant question of all: What kind of human leadership does the Earth require in order to sustain itself and all life upon it into the foreseeable future?
In order to try to help find some starting points for these considerations, I attempted a few Google searches today. Most of what I found was rather disappointing, mostly some people who have put together a few seminars on leadership, or documents which were severely shortened to the point of uselessness. Then there were the usual business leadership models, which are more or less a better way to build a mousetrap. Then I found a blog which seemed promising, so I began to read some of the entries. It is written by an intelligent, thoughtful woman named Venessa Miemis. She explores various aspects of leadership and presents different approaches to new leadership that she has learned about. I find this blog, http://emergentbydesign.com, very interesting indeed. Not only are her articles well written and presented, but many of the comments after her articles are also quite articulate and interesting to read also. One such commenter tells her story thus:
One day, I left home one morning to hop the train, with a perky “I’m off to war!” instead of “I’m off to work!” and in that instant I knew I’d hit my limit, and that my environment had become too combative for me to deny. My Freudian slip had revealed a Gordion Knot, and it was time to move on.
I spent some time healing from adrenal fatigue. I spent some time cleaning off the ick that had covered my personal compass. I spent some time treating myself like a pregnant lady, which seems to be the only socially-endorsed circumstance under which a woman is given free rein to care for herself on every level. I spent some time writing index cards of all the business I knew how to run, and then was terribly disinterested in running them in any existing molds of how to do so.
And so I started inventing from what felt good.
What would it look like, feel like, taste like, touch like to not subsume any part of me? To function in a living enterprise that equally honored intuition and intellection? Where all of me deeply mattered? Where what I was really good at (truly) was what I was deeply honored and valued for offering?
Where feelings are valid input points that reveal edges that truly matter, that are core to success of the enterprise. Where you pause to inquire into the gut response you are getting at each stage, and you receive a higher and better outcome for your attention and diligence to all perceptual inputs.
Where creation is a dance, is fun, is play, is Work. And where Work brings health, wealth, love, and perfect self-expression. Where you can be “serious” about Work without being “solemn” about it. Where when things feels heavy, you check in with your compass to see which way feels lighter and brighter and then you know that is the correct course to take.
And this isn’t all Pollyanna bullshit. Finally our studies begin to reveal to our rational minds what we intuitively already know. Human-centric works. (Hi, Global Renaissance! What up, Occupy Everything.) As for me, some days I feel wise, which is awake to myself. So I say to me, “Find your wise company. Your wise money, your wise fellows. Choose the game. Find some players. Make up new rules together. Everybody level up.” And for all the prior hurts from the Alpha system: I offer only this: radical forgiveness. Alpha had its time; it served its purpose, we gained a lot from it, and we are playing a new game now with new rules.
Wholeness. Multi-dimensionality. Union. Synergy. Different instruments within a composition. The flute isn’t jealous of the banjo. The different instruments are unique, discrete, and better together. Let’s get the jam going. This is new, this co-arising. This high complementarity.
So let’s go together. Let’s learn new music together.
(from http://emergentbydesign.com/2012/04/06/a-rant-when-will-more-women-demonstrate-their-power/ comment by KO)
Thank you, KO, for these insightful words from a war-weary warrior of the old paradigm! Yes, I say, to the idea that “Work brings health, wealth, love and perfect self-expression.” And the phrase ‘high complementarity.” Yes, that’s it! What we need is to think of our groups, our tribes, our circles, as choirs, as orchestras– whether we are a duo, quartet, jazz band or philharmonic orchestra matters not. Think of the best musical conductors in the world. What are they able to accomplish? They hear the whole, they know exactly how to bring out the very best, the most perfect expression from each member of the orchestra, they have a level of mastery which creates masterpieces. What if we took that model into our new paradigm? Not with the old alpha male, top down, prima donna energy, but instead with humility, genuine curiosity and masses of enthusiasm for the beautiful music that we know could be created?
Dear Readers, if you have any models of new leadership that you are wild about and would like to share here, please do so in the comments area. I will continue with this topic in days to come. As always, thanks for reading and contributing to making our world, now and in the future, as beautiful, compassionate and healthy as we all imagine it can be.