My talk is going to be in two parts.
The first part will deal
with the history of leadership,
leadership theory, and also the history
of leadership development.
In the second part, I'm going
to present a contemporary view
of the situation concerning leadership.
And here I'm going to use
the crossing point
of Mary Parker-Follett
in her "Law of the Situation".
From her "Law of the Situation",
I can develop the argument
that all leaders are in fact followers
and that when they function as they should,
they contribute to organisational learning.
to deal with the history of leadership.
To do this, I'm going to do
a very broad and deep reaching
back into the past
view of the evolution of culture,
the economy, and lifestyle.
When I've dealt with these
six broad eras of history,
I'm going to then
look at the styles or approaches
or traditions of leadership
associated with each of them,
reaching very much deep back into history,
before the human was a primary force
on the face of the earth,
we have the animal world.
This still was organised
and one can also question
what led this organisation.
The second era I want to deal with
is the period
in which humans roamed
on the face of the earth
This went on for millions of years
and everything since,
is a small proportion of the time
that human beings operated like that,
a point that is made much of
by evolutionary psychologists,
which I'll mention in a minute.
In this period, human beings
gathered vegetables and roots
and hunted animals and the like to eat,
who roamed in the wild.
The following and third era
was the agricultural one
whereas well as hunting and gathering,
human beings in closed land grew crops,
kept animals and the like.
This went on for perhaps thousands
rather than millions of years
and as we will see, the pace of change
is accelerating dramatically.
The fourth and following era
is that of industry and manufacture
and this is going back,
a mere few 100 years.
Here a large proportion of human beings
moved fairly rapidly
to working in factories or the like,
rather than on the land.
And this goes on today,
though large portions of it,
as many of us know, are moving
or have moved to the newly
developing parts of the world.
The following era
I'm going to call mentofacture,
because that means making
with the mind rather than manufacture,
which means making with the hand,
as in manual labor.
This is the much talked about
which includes activities
like financial services,
design and so on.
In other parts of the world,
some countries like China and parts of India,
have stayed with manufacture.
But some like Singapore
and other parts of India have, to some extent,
jumped over the manufacture era
and gone straight into mentofacture
or knowledge work and the like.
It's said that the call center is the factory
of the knowledge economy
or mentofacture style work.
It's worth pointing out that activities
like agriculture clearly still exist
but they have been, if you like,
by the later developments.
So for example, it's said
that much of agriculture,
at organic farming and so on,
is in fact outdoor manufacture.
In this sense, the only difference
between the farm and the factory
is that in the factory the goods
go through the machines,
and on the farm, the machines
go over the goods.
And it doesn't stop there.
For quite a number of years
now, we've had the lightless factory
where there are no human beings,
so no need for light.
And the robots are doing the manufacturing,
the human beings are designing
and maintaining the robots,
which is more mentofacture style work.
On the farm, the tractor,
putting the sprays
that's putting insecticides or fertilizer
on the crops,
is more than likely controlled,
at least in terms of the dosage of the spray,
by a satellite message coming
to the tractor from a fertilizer company.
The extents of the development
of the mentofacture era is contested.
It has been argued that, even in America,
only 17% of the working population
are truly doing knowledge work.
The remainder are still cooking
burgers in McDonald's
or bolting wheels on a car in a factory.
However, the industrial revolution
did not take place overnight
and nor has the knowledge economy revolution.
But even before that's fully developed,
I want to argue we're moving on
to the next one,
at least in part,
which I'm going to call Spiroculture.
In this, people are not looking
so much for goods and services
with which to survive,
but meaningfulness in their lives.
This applies both to people
as customers of organisations
but also to people
as employees of organisations.
And temporary organisations
are selling their brand,
internally to their employees,
as something to be proud
to be associated with,
as well as to their customers.
It's said that shopping malls
have replaced cathedrals
as the place where
people go in their leisure time,
not to get necessities of life
but to find a new identity for themselves.
So for example, when somebody
buys a designer T-shirt for 50 pounds,
it may have cost 50 pee to make in China
and perhaps another pound
to ship it around the world,
and another 2 pounds to market it.
But the remaining 48 or so pounds
is for the brand,
for the identity, for the label
to give people a sense of identity
and meaning in life.