In Search of...Transformational Leaders
In his article, "A Systemic View of Transformational Leadership", the late Russell Ackoff defined the activity of administration as "directing others in carrying out the will of a third party, using means selected by the same party." He contrasted this with management, which he defined as "directing others in the pursuit of ends using means both of which have been selected by the manager." Russ reserved the activity of leadership for "guiding, encouraging and facilitating the pursuit by others of ends using means, both of which they have either selected, or the selection of which they approve."
Russ concludes, "a transformational leader is one who can formulate or facilitate the formulation of an inspiring vision of something to be sought even if it is unattainable, although it must at least be approachable without limit. The leader must also be able to encourage and facilitate (inspire) pursuit of the vision, by invoking the courage required to do so even when short-term sacrifices are required, by making that pursuit satisfying, fun as well as fulfilling." Dr. Deming would certainly agree on the role of fun, not to mention making a difference from where we are, something Russ advised attendees to do during his appearances at our 2005 and 2006 Forums. (Link here for a screensaver of quotes from Russ that we created in 2008.)
If you're interested in exploring the limitless implications of leadership and improving team work in industry, government, and education, through better thinking about thinking, we invite you to join us at the In2:InThinking Network 2012 Forum in Los Angeles, California on April 19th through 24th. This year, our ever timely focus will be;
"Leading with Better Questions"
For reservations or more information, visit our 2012 Forum website at www.in2in.org/forums/2012 or e-mail us at email@example.com.
Our Forum registration fee is $400 for the weekend Conference, with a $50 discount for registrations received by midnight, Pacific Time, on March 8th.
In2:IN 2012 Forum Team