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Leading in a complex world (a collection)

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Power

Mansplaining Feminist Leadership

By James Traeger

“One of the group said ‘feminist leadership doesn’t feel very inclusive – what about the men she manages?’ She looks directly at me, and I am, in that moment, completely thrown. I do not know what to say. As my brain whirrs, a reflexive angel on my shoulder is amused to notice the irony of being silenced in this way. Like women are, I imagine, in so many settings?”

and

“You see I don’t think that it is a denial of inclusivity for a woman to say she is a feminist leader. I see it as a challenge to unequal power. I see the possibility of feminist leadership as one of creating a more inclusive culture. ”

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Reframing accountability in organizational practice

By Chris Rodgers:

“Whatever happens in practice, then, (whether ‘good, ‘bad’, or ‘indifferent’) is not determined by formally designed structures and accountability systems. It emerges instead from the widespread interplay of myriad local interactions.”

and

“It’s in the detail of people’s moment-to-moment exchanges that organization is enacted and ‘outcomes’ emerge. Managers would therefore do well to direct their attention towards the quality of people’s participation in this ongoing interactional process.”

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Conscious business — impact and implications for HR and OD

By Pete Burden and Rob Warwick

“There are many things we can do. These include:

  • noticing and challenging our habits of speech
  • learning to sense and understand our feelings more accurately
  • learning to inquire not just advocate
  • reaching out to new and different types of people who will have challenging conversations with us
  • modelling different ways to work with power.”

and

“Conscious Business is an invitation to inquire”.

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The personal is political

Elena de Ferrante, writing about the words ‘The personal is political’

‘I owe much to that famous slogan. From it I learned that even the most intimate individual concerns, those that are most extraneous to the public sphere, are influenced by politics; that is to say, by that complicated, pervasive, irreducible thing that is power and its uses. It’s only a few words, but with their fortunate ability to synthesize they should never be forgotten. They convey what we are made of, the risk of subservience we are exposed to, the kind of deliberately disobedient gaze we must turn on the world and on ourselves.’

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