This type of leadership holds a lot of power. In both productive and counterproductive respects. The rhetoric employed to effectively carry out charismatic leadership acts as a double edged sword. While it is true that a message delivered in a charismatic manner inspires the followers to implement it with a lot of fervor, but in this same zest, there are a lot of important issues that are overlooked and lots of questions ignored. This entails problems when the charisma delivers its desired results, but they still leave a sour taste in the mouth.
In my professional career, I have not encountered charismatic leadership neither in the top echelons of power nor in the middle management slots. However, most of us have been affected, and even wowed, by the charismatic skills of Barack Obama, while running for the US Presidency in 2008. Inspirational rhetoric, exceptional oratory skills and narcissistic excellence were expertly deployed towards millions of people. Perhaps in our lifetimes, it has proven to be a living, breathing example of pure, unadulterated charisma. It was a need of the time and a result of the disillusionment with the last 8 years. But, the cynicism that perhaps was put in the back seat during this process, made a comeback in the last two years, where more and more people have grown disillusioned by the lack of actual, and perceived, objectives being achieved. The overhyped expectations that are, in effect, created by charismatic leadership, eventually end up hampering its own effects, even though the results achieved might be significant.
In the spirit of double edged swords, narcissism fits the bill perfectly. Excessive traits of this personality type have officially been diagnosed as a psychological disorder, whereas a good mix of those same qualities supposedly makes a great leader. From my personal experience, there has been a lot more interaction with unproductive narcissists, as compared to the productive...
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