Leadership is an important concept in every sector, in family, school, organization, company, and in every community. The secret behind the success of any organization is its leadership. Academic analysis has given us more than 850 definitions of leadership (bennis, 1997). All of them have the same factors but in different formulations. After I read many of these definitions, I saw leadership as guiding a group of people toward achieving a specific goal. Scholars researched and studied leadership styles, and leadership patterns, whereas Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner studied leadership from a different perspective. They dealt with leadership as a challenge and the leader who succeeds in facing the challenge and gets extraordinary result is considered exemplary. As a result, Kouzes and Posner started their journey since 1983 looking for how the leader becomes exemplary and achieves extraordinary results. Their study covered leadership in all sectors and on all the continents of the world. They collected data from different people and mangers during 25 years and analyzed them. They found that in order for a leader to be exemplary and able to get extraordinary results, he/she has to be able to transform values into actions, visions into realities, obstacles into innovations, separateness into solidarity, and risks into rewards (Kouzes & Posner, 2002). To get all this done, they outlined a mechanism that they called “The Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership“ ; there are two commitments that go along with each practice which are the subject of our research.
Model the way
Model the way is aligned with two commitments .The first one is find your voice by clarifying your values. A leader must clarify the values that he believes in, look for the common values, and have the ability to transfer these values into actions. A clear guiding principle is necessary to follow and to gain the consensus about these principles from to be easily applied. These values must be reflected in the leader’s behavior to emphasize credibility which as Kouzes and Posner said is the foundation of leadership. Leaders’ clear values help them to practice the second commitment which is “set the example by aligning actions with shared values”. Telling stories helps others think about how to bring values alive. Giving rousing speeches is not enough; a leader has to go first and participate by doing what he asks others to do. Also a leader has to be (dwysywd) which is the acronym of (do what you say you will do). Followers will believe not what they hear from the leader but what they see the leader consistently do. For example, the director general of the company that I work for issued a decision that all employees must wear their ID on their chests as long as they were inside the company during the formal working time. The next day, we saw him standing at the entrance wearing his ID as an example or a model for us. Undoubtedly, model the way is not enough to complete the picture of the exemplary leadership, consequently; leaders need to follow another practice in order to share the vision. Inspire a shared vision
Leaders to inspire a shared vision with their employees, have to practice two commitments. The first one is to envision the future by imagining exciting and ennobling possibilities. Think for yourself and imagine the future that you wish for your organization. Ask, listen, and adapt mentally and emotionally the employees’ vision, their future imagination, and what they aspire for the organization. The second commitment is to enlist others in a common vision by appealing to a shared aspiration. A leader needs to analyze and discuss both aspirations to create a common aspiration which contributes in strengthening the work relationship and enlisting others to work on achieving the common aspiration. Welcome any opinion or thoughts...