Critical Thinking Assignment
April 18, 2012
Summary of Goleman
In the article “The Emotional Intelligence of Leaders”, Goleman (1998) believed that “emotional intelligence” is paramount in leaders of modern organizations; even more important than actual skills related to their job functions. Since we are hardwired to feel, the author stated that it is impossible to separate our emotions when we go to work. He articulated the importance of self-awareness in leaders. Goleman suggested that “selfawareness is essential to realistic self-assessment” (22), and self-awareness also leads to self-confidence which is essential for leaders. However, unlike regular intelligence that we are born with and cannot be change d, the author explained several ways successful leaders can utilize emotion and develop their emotional intelligence. He noted that leaders often lose their jobs if they cannot lead or adapt to changes; both of these reasons are directly related to emotions. His research in U.S. children discovered a positive correlation between one’s ability and success in controlling his or her emotions, particularly impulses, early on in childhood and his or her future academic success. Furthermore, Goleman pointed out that optimism is a vital emotional trait in leadership. It allowed optimists to handle rejections and motivating others when there are setbacks in the organization. The author suggested that even though emotional intelligence is important; it has actually declined because we are spending less time in developing it in recent years. The advent of digital communication and the accompanied technologies means we are using less time to interact with one another on a more personal level, he asserted. Moreover, Goleman concluded that leaders Critical Thinking 3 cannot be effective unless they understand emotions and utilize them to their advantage, especially in the modern fast changing organizational environment. Summary of McCrimmon
In the article “Thought Leadership: a Radical Departure fromTraditional, Positional Leadership”, McCrimmon (2005) presented a new leadership approached he termed “thought leadership.” (1065) He defined thought leadership as “championing of new ideas.” (1066) McCrimmon used a myriad of examples in different organizational environment to point out theusefulness of thought leaders and one of his main points which is thought leaders are not necessarily managers thus no managerial skills are even required. Take it one step further, the author explained that thought leaders do not even have to be in the same company, let alone inside the company’s leadership structure. Since every person has the opportunity to become athought leader, McCrimmon noted, this type of leadership is not controlled within any existing leadership positions and no appointment is necessary. He indicated that thought leadership is neither not top-down nor bottom-up; it has no particular directions within the organizational structure. The author pointed out that these thought leaders can arise from anywhere, anytime in an organization. McCrimmon used Martin Luther King as an example to show that thought leaders can even be dead and continue to have effect. McCrimmon explained the key features of thought leadership which mostly centered on situation around innovation and new ideas; therefore, technical skills of the leaders are more important actual interpersonal skills they possess. He claimed that “emotional intelligence is not essential for thought leadership” (1068). McCrimmon explained that the willingness or the urge champion new ideas is not learned while traditional leadership skills that can be learned. The author concluded that thought leadership best described what really transpire in organizations that depends on new ideas or innovations. Discussion
Characteristics of any leader in any modern organizations mightinclude intelligence, confidence, optimism, inspiration, proficiency, and...