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5-D Leadership

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All of us at some time or another have to assume the position of leadership. This can be a formal position such as a president of a company or it can be informal such as suggesting the gang goes out for lunch and you take the initiative to arrange the festivities. In today?s world much is demanded of our leaders. We place great expectations on them and we are more than willing to tear them down when they fail us. With so much riding on our performance knowing how to lead is so important if we are to survive in the world of work. Good leadership comes with mastering certain skills.

The authors Campbell and Samiec have focused on five leadership dimension (5-D) and have described them, giving specific instructions how to become competent in all five areas. The five dimensions are:

1. Commanding - taking charge. In some situations leaders have to meet a situation head on and tell people what to do and how to do it. When a situation is at or near disaster, it is not time to discuss and get a consensus. It is time to take control and discuss later.

2. Visioning - point the way. If a group is going to achieve anything, someone has to provide reason for doing it. A vision shows people what it could be like so that they are willing to cooperate and perform with enthusiasm.

3. Enrolling - getting a buy-in. Not every situation is ?man the lifeboats or we?ll all drown?. Most situations involve long term commitments. Here you want people to feel that they are part of the process. If they have an opportunity to have a say in how things are done, even if their idea is not used, usually they are more willing to give the project their best.

4. Relating - creating harmony. People are more willing to support leaders if they feel that the leaders cares about their well-being. It may only take leaders saying hello when they pass an employee in the hall. People want to be more than a cog in a big machine. When people are acknowledged, they feel part of the team.

5. Coaching - developing people. Effective leaders are looking for their replacements. They are not threatened by those aspiring to their position. They reach out to mentor those who show promise. They give them opportunities to develop and hone their skills.

The authors see these dimensions as crucial to effective leadership. They provide many examples of individuals using these skills to deal with the inevitable problems that occur in any group. Having outlined what the dimensions are, they then proceed to provide the techniques to develop these skills.

This is a book to inspire you to look at your own leadership skills and the ways and means to improve them. This book would be useful to leadership coaches or as a text for a leadership course or workshop.

Jack Falt (Idealist, Authentic Blue, Chart-the-Course, INFJ, Ennea-9) leads an ongoing group in Ottawa called Appreciating Differences that studies temperament, interaction styles, cognitive processes, and the enneagram, applying them to a wide variety of topics. He was a former board director of OAAPT and writes many of the book reviews for their newsletter Tell~A~Type. He can be reached by e-mail at [email protected]
Jack Falt 04/18/2006


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