Leadership and management development

Example is leadership – Albert Schweitzer

Good leadership and management are the most important success factors in any organisation. The good leader-manager ensures ongoing learning and performance improvement by

  • communicating and developing shared vision and values
  • formulating clear goals, strategies and objectives
  • building motivated teams that focus on delivering real value and benefits to communities, citizens and customers
  • creating strong planning, monitoring, evaluation and reporting systems
  • coaching staff and managing their performance
  • facilitating individual, team and organisational learning and development
  • leading by example

Emthunzini offers leadership and management training, together with follow-up support as speaking partners and coaches, using an action learning approach. Leaders and managers often need assistance in developing objectivity and perspective and in exploring options for dealing with difficult situations. And this is often not provided by those to whom they report, who often lack the skills, are enmeshed in the same situation, and with whom there is an unequal power relationship. An independent speaking partner provides for this need.

Leadership development involves personal development, which requires the courage for self knowledge, and the will to address one’s own deficiencies in a systematic manner. Action learning practised on an individual basis provides a valuable method for taking the path of self improvement to develop one’s full potential as a leader.

Communication is the most essential leadership competence, including listening to really understand, asking the right questions and saying what is needed and sometimes inspiring in specific situations.

Management involves achieving results through and with others

Management on the other hand involves a range of technical skills that can be learned and practiced, such as planning, organising, delegating, monitoring and evaluating. But managers also need to manage themselves, their time and the performance of their staff. However, the developmental manager is also a leader.

Good leaders facilitate the development of a learning organisation. They serve as role models by learning and developing themselves, and create a learning culture by encouraging learning and innovation among staff. They promote learning as a core value in the organisation, making continuous learning and performance improvement part of the culture.

A key function of modern leaders is to facilitate the development of their staff and organisations. A learning-based and sustainable approach to organisation development requires staff participation in regular review, evaluation and improvement processes. Leaders in a learning organisation involve staff as partners, as everyone has different experiences, roles and contributions to make.

Developmental leader-managers facilitate participation and dialogue, and welcome feedback and questioning. They encourage staff to innovate and nurture rather than fear leadership abilities in others. Good leaders also need a strong conceptual ability which encompasses both immediate awareness and insight, and long-term perspective, imagination and oversight. The Polarities Model serves as a compass for leaders in this regard, as well as in terms of awareness of process and interaction dynamics.