Saturday, March 07, 2020

Reality behind Leadership Charisma

Leadership is about stories. They make stories and they tell stories. But do you know how they create stories to create their personal brand in the organization and outside the organization? With social media, it is very easy now a days. There are consultants who manage your social media profiles and postings to create a positive image in the market. When you read LinkedIn postings of leaders and users, it is also evident that every person now a days is storyteller. 99% stories are philosophical and perhaps for others. I don’t know how much they follow what they read. Few people are so obsessed with social media fame that they post by every hour. It is also too much for readers. If there are learning from such stories, we should read and appreciate such stories. After all making storytelling is a great skill and it is relevant now a days. Every professional need to be storyteller. We need to learn that skill to be relevant in the changing market situation where span of attention of readers and audience is decreasing.
There are few leaders who create their own charisma through such stories. We always appreciate simplicity of Mr. Ratan Tata & Narayan Murti, Presentation skill of Steve Jobs, Presence of Mind & Oratory skills of Mr. Narendra Modi etc. These leaders are great leaders and they earned that respect by their work. However, there are few leaders who have the big followers who are mainly cheerleaders. When Cheerleaders make stories, then there are problems. 
Cheerleaders have their own agenda and they have their own purpose of spreading stories of some leaders. Such stories may not be real. We have a lot of examples where some corporate leaders (you know them very well) are in trouble because of some ethical issues. Leadership is being fair and ethical when you enjoy the absolute power. There is always a fluidity in the behaviour of leaders whose stories are created and spread by cheerleaders. Sometimes these cheerleaders are their own employees and sometimes they are paid communication & PR agents.
If some leader is known for his/her connect with shop floor workmen and stories of sipping a cup of tea during night shifts are discussed every time, then context behind that story may be different. First things in mind comes, is that why people make stories of such behaviours. Such leaders create their own aura in the organization; they create boundaries. Meeting them is very difficult and when meet and sip the tea along with workmen, it creates the impression. You will not hear any stories of that leader who is always accessible.
Creating and telling stories are good but when character becomes larger than the process of that success story, then such stories are not good. I am always concerned about leaders who are media savvy. From Ramalinga Raju to Chanda Kocher has the great legacy of stories, but we know the end.
You should be worried when your leader is trying to create the image larger than life.

PS: Just during this week we read about Yes Bank news and CEO of Rana Kapoor. Another fallout.    

Don't go by the face value of media darling corporate leaders. 

1 comment:

Unknown said...

People with character and honesty never tried to build image.

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