Leadership musings from Kerala's Small &Medium Enterprise Ecosystem
I have to say I loved reading this article by The Economist about Leadership and the way it' s perceived by majority of followers - you can ready the article here
Ever since I commenced my own entrepreneurship stint with SS Consulting, I have had the opportunity to watch leadership role players who were Founders / Co-founders from close quarters. These leaders come from the companies which came to us (we take referred clients mostly) to enable their organisation's growth journey. So I could relate quickly to the examples referred in this article. Here's what I learned from past 4 years of interactions with leadership role players in Kerala.
- Assessment of Quality remains a challenge - Oratory skills, Charisma, Position, Caste and background comes in the way of relevant metrics for assessing leadership skills.
- Miss realising that Leadership is 'different' by itself - Most leadership role players get elevated to their roles due to pre-disposition or proven Technical strengths and hence miss connecting to the basic tenet that Leadership is about beyond 'self' and more about influencing others.
- Leaders miss upgrading their own skills - most feel that they have learned what it takes to lead based on past experiences or by following another individuals. These can be Parents, Relatives, Friends with Charisma / oratory skills. This prevents connection to the context of their current organisation / Startup and ends up alienating employees / followers.
- Role of a leader is misunderstood by Investing community - Kerala startup scene is reasonably well funded by a variety of investors. These investors, having made their mark in an era which was very different from current scenario are highly likely to miss the nuances that a leadership role player will face in today's entrepreneurship environment. Such investors therefore, are prone to making hasty decisions about placement of Talent to leadership roles.
Signing off with a video about a result oriented style of leadership as practiced by Richardo Semler, whose approaches helped his family owned company, Semco stand out. He did this over 25 years ago.