Stardust inspiration or steady direction?

Or ideally both?

Let me explain…

Whatever your politics, or level of interest in such things, the New Zealand election is proving that, once again, these campaigns are fascinating from a leadership perspective.

And that nothing can be certain. Particularly with a change in opposition leader just weeks from polling day.

And what a change it was. But new leaders are exciting, aren’t they? Shiny, new, enthusiastic, fresh. They don’t seem to make a false move. And maybe that’s because we don’t want them to. With a heavy dose of starry inspiration, a new leader can galvanise their followers into believing that anything is possible.

But what about providing clear direction? After all, at its purest, leadership is simply about achieving the appropriate situational balance of inspiring AND directing, as demonstrated in this refreshingly simple Inspire guide to leadership.

Here, the strong, established known quantity of an existing leader often has the upper hand. And, at the time of writing, it seems that the tide may be turning in this direction. Maybe.

Because elections are tricky and unpredictable things.

So, in the end, and, as with many leadership ‘contests’ played out nationally, or just within your own organisation, it perhaps comes down to who holds that trump (sorry!) card:

Who do I most trust to lead me to a brighter future?


James McCulloch is Director of Leadership at Inspire Group, an international learning design provider. He has a strong opinion on how leadership, and leadership development, can be simplified and improved, and a healthy curiosity on leadership lessons from the world around us.

Why not find out more, and get in touch here.

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