...I guess the risk is that we locate the cause of the change in the leader, not in the relational dynamic that emerges between leader and led, a dynamic that has as much to do with the responder as with the person who stimulated it.
There's also something significant for me about the wider social, cultural and political context within which we see 'leadership' manifest itself.
For instance, a church minister speaks from the platform in a church meeting and evokes a positive response from those present - and we attribute that response to the minister's leadership qualities. If the minister spoke the same words in the same way in a very different context (e.g. in an environment dismissive of or hostile towards Christian beliefs), it would likely evoke a very different response.
Does that mean the minister exercised leadership in the former environment but not in the latter, or is what we experience as 'leadership' actually the product of a specific social interaction within a specific social, cultural and political context?
Nick is a freelance coach, trainer and OD consultant specialising in reflective practice.