KARIN ZASTROW

blogging about DIRECT LEADERSHIP

Mintzberg and Direct Leadership!

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People have told me for years and I have to admit it: I am a doer. Someone who works hands-on and writes based on my experience as opposed to a scholar or a student.

For that reason, when I published Direct Leadership – the new narrative of everyday leadership, and people told me that it seemed inspired by Mintzberg, I could truthfully tell that I was not aware of that inspiration. And consequently Mintzberg is also not on the book’s litterature list.

But what a mistake …

As part of some research I am currently starting to look into, I am now finally actually reading Mintzberg. And I am proud and pleased to find that people were right. There is a lot of commonality in his and my thinking in relation to the nature of managerial work.

Allow me to share just a few examples with you all:

I say: I do not pay too much attention to the common distinction between leadership and management… I address any man or woman whose job includes leading and managing two or more people….

Mintzberg says: I use the words management and leadership interchangeably… I reject this distinction, simply because managers have to lead and leaders have to manage

I speak about the situational/opportunistic nature of the manager’s work as follows: Leadership opportunities are the numerous challenges, which do not lend themselves to solution according to a predefined procedure or routine.’

Mintzberg says: Put together a good deal of craft with a certain amount of art and some science, and you end up with a job that is above all a practise. There is no ”one best way” to manage it all depends on the situation.

I say in relation to Direct Leadership role no. 6 (Decision Enabler): In the past it was common to perceive decision-making as an inherent and distinctive leadership responsibility.

Mintzberg says: While managers certainly have to make decisions, far more important, especially in large networked organisations of knowledge workers, is what they do to enhance the decision-making capabilities of others…

Do I have to say that I can’t wait to read more of this intelligent passionate man?
And all of the above is from his old book ”Managers Not MBA’s”.

I can’t wait to get through his newer books.

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Written by Karin Zastrow

June 8, 2012 at 15:37

Posted in Misc

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