Conversations I Wish I Had

Beyond Superman: humanitarian leadership today

Katie McKenna

What does it mean to be an effective leader in the humanitarian space today?  A new report by ALNAP provides some surprising answers.

Published in early June, Leadership in Action: Leading effectively in humanitarian operations reveals the disconnect between accepted theory and the real-world practice of humanitarian leadership today.

“Visions of leadership still sit in a largely “male” and Western mould” writes IRIN Global about the report, “Thus many interviewees believed effective leadership must necessarily entail being a workaholic, describing effective leaders as being ‘married to their jobs’.”

The kicker?  This model is actually surprisingly ineffective when put into practice in the field. Paul Knox Clarke, ALNAP’s head of research and communications, sums up their findings in this video interview with Alertnet:

What we saw emerge was that this idea of the super-leader, the leader as some kind of superhero, really doesn’t work.  The most effective leaders are [those] who…

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This entry was posted on May 25, 2015 by .
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