Leadership in the news monthly review May 2015

Review of articles on leadership in the major global newspapers for May 2015


Every month, Leadership Issues reviews highlights/trends from features/articles on the subject of leadership appearing in major global newspapers. Today we are reviewing the month of May.

The top three themes for May (in order) appearing in the nationals included:

Leadership competences
Women in leadership
Leading innovation and change

The theme of leadership competence made its debut this month on the leader board and was a runaway winner. The global national press published many articles last month pertaining to the subject of ‘what makes a leader’. Opinions were diverse and included: integrity, trust, adaptability, learning, confidence, emotional intelligence, inspiration, courage, decisiveness, respect, truth, vision, coaching, storytelling, communication, generosity, humility and self-awareness. This is the third consecutive month where women and leadership features on the leader board reflecting the global concern of the disproportionate number of women reaching senior leadership roles. Leading innovation and change featured on the leader board in February and March and then dropped away in April. It’s good to see interest has returned as CEOs continue to identify innovation as essential for the post-recession economy.

Four articles stood out and are worth profiling.

In his article, The Business Case for Trust, Charu Sabnavis from The Business Standard quotes from several studies highlighting the degree of mistrust employees have toward senior leaders. Sabnavis reminds us that trust is not a ‘nice to have’ but a core leadership competence that builds strong organisational values and behaviour. Eamonn Percy, writing for The Globe and Mail in an article, In the age of disruptive innovation, adaptability is what matters most, unites two leading themes: leadership competence and innovation. In a global trend of transition (technological change, mass migration and demographic change with the increasing influence of the millennial generation), the ability to adapt is becoming a key leadership competence. A provocative article in The Huffington Post, Why work/life balance is a big fat lie by Avis Jones-DeWeever explores how the work/life balance agenda which has traditionally sought to help women in the workplace may in fact be hindering progress to leadership. The secret is not about balancing life to fit an organisation’s pre-set agenda/point of view on what a balanced life is, but prioritising life to suit individual passions and needs. This all requires self vision, prioritisation, honesty and support. It is essential to be able to have the self-autonomy to “diversify yourself” to quote from Peter Bregman’s Harvard Business Review article reprinted last month in The Boston Globe. Finally, a few papers reported on some new research carried out by Kansas State University and the National University of Singapore on the issue of a leadership gene. Jena McGregor from The Washington Post reports on the findings in an article entitled New study examines the possibility of a leadership gene/span> that people who have a version of the gene called the 10-repeat allele are more likely to demonstrate mild rule breaking and inquisitive behaviour which the research links to leadership. The research rekindles the age-old debate on whether leaders are born or made.

Click here for a full list of titles and sources from the March archive and remember to check the leadership in the news section everyday where daily articles on leadership are posted.