Saturday, September 24, 2005

elegant leadership

Fire Canoe #2
Originally uploaded by peter bowers.

it is good to read leadership books from people who have led in various capacities. one author that seems to catch the eye of many christians is max de pree. three of his best known books are probably leadership is an art, leading without power, and leadership jazz.

i love how todd hunter in his blog gives a quick list of depree's marks of elegant leadership. these are marks any good leader will in the power of the spirit try to live out.

*freeing people to do their best, giving the gift of being understood as a whole person
*covenant relationships; not contracts, but abandoning yourself to the strengths of others
*intelligence and wisdom
*giving away involvement, not merely time; giving the gift of listening
*equality and an egalitarian spirit amid minimal hierarchy
*forgiveness and release
*appropriately matching a person's unique gifts to opportunity
*the joy of moral goals along with earned, joyfully given rewards
*equity in work and in benefits; say "thank you"
*we are not victims of our corporate cultures, we are co-creators of them. thus, grow and change as a person. learn to embody selfless, secure love. be a model, because leaders reproduce in kind.

if you want to read more about max depree, check out this book review by neil harvey, or this interview with max depree on the leader's legacy.

i will leave you with one max depree quote: "the first responsibility of a leader is to define reality, the last is to say thank you. in between the leader should be a servant."


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