Principles of Knowledge Leadership

Abstract: Leadership is a subjective participation sport of perspectives and relationships. The more effectively you influence others to play with you, the greater your own success, and the more value you generate with, and for, others. Great leaders generate trust and act in an open and trustworthy manner. In doing so, they generate an environment in which people desire to be involved in decision-making and the implementation of value-creating actions. They interact in an open manner to solicit a range of perspectives to ensure knowledge is transferred between them, constructively challenging current thinking to generate the ideas to make a better tomorrow. Knowledge leadership is primarily behavioural (both for the leader and their followers) and generates a collaborative atmosphere of ownership and a sense of identity around the shared purpose. Effective leaders use metaphor to simplify complex matters and creatively highlight connections between what is already known and what needs to be understood for the future. This use of metaphor to draw people towards a mutually beneficial journey with sustainable outcomes develops an environment of trust and participation.

Reflect on why you have followed those you consider your leaders, mentors, and role models. Reflect on why we will move mountains for those we trust… and why we place them in the paths of those we do not.

Arthur Shelley: 12 Principles of Knowledge Leadership. The Organizational Zoo Blog, September 23, 2013

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