Sunday, September 17, 2006

Transformational Leadership Frameworks

Five Conceptual Frameworks for transformational leadership focussing on "generating the breakthrough insights needed to generate new commitments, behaviour, and results for individuals, institutions and societies."

I've just read Monica Sharma's article in the latest issue (No.12) of shift from IONS. She describes an integrated "transformative leadership" methodology she helped develop for the United Nations Development Program in 2001. Her Transformative Leadership Development Program (2005) has now reached 4.5 million people across 40 countries with a particular focus on creating leadership capacity to help countries respond to HIV/AIDS.

According to a report on the UNDP European website the Five Conceptual Frameworks provide easily transferrable tools for transformation that have been effective at all levels of society and across diverse cultures.

What would happen if we used these tools for educational change? And also for empowering students as we promote global citizenship?

Sharma's five frameworks for transformative leadership (Annexes 3) are:

  1. Leadership Competencies and Distinctions
  2. Emotional Intelligence Framework - based on the work of Daniel Goleman
  3. Four-Quadrant Framework - based on the work of Ken Wilber
  4. Levels of Organisational Development - based on the work of Rensis Likert
  5. Dynamic Strategic Planning Processes - based on appreciative inquiry

These frameworks are used within a systems thinking approach based on the work of Peter Senge.

According to Sharma the frameworks provide conceptual maps that "suggest ways of perceiving, understanding, and interpreting the world that may be different from our usual conditioning."

She says the Transformative Leadership Development Program (TLDP)

"emphasizes that the level of learning necessary to develop transformational leaders goes beyond sharing theories, learning new techniques, or gathering information. It is a process that actually works at a level deep enough to discover and shift who people are being, not what they know; it is for individuals who are ready and willing to be learners and to engage in a process of profound personal growth."

Sounds like something we need in our education systems... :-)

I like the way the TLDP not only uses coherent conceptual frameworks as a kind of holistic lens that highlights multiple aspects of an issue, but also the way several frameworks are integrated to provide a multidimensional picture of a system... hopefully giving a better chance for sustainable systemic change.

Which frameworks/tools would best facilitate educational transformation? Would the same set also be appropriate for students involved in leadership?

Perhaps Gardner's Multiple Intelligences Framework could be added to Goleman's Emotional Intelligence Framework? Perhaps Grave's Spiral Dynamics could be added to Likert's framework? Perhaps Senge's U-Process could be added to the strategic planning processes?

There is certainly no shortage of tools! Do we know how to use them? Can we afford not to use them?


Sharma, M (2006) Conscious Leadership at the Crossroads of Change in shift (No.12): IONS

UNDP Report Annexes 3 - Accessed from UNDP European website on 17th Sept. 2006

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At 2:39 AM, Blogger Chris said...

Great post...

And yes, I think it is possible to use these frameworks in many ways. I do constantly, and my experience is that they talk to one another very well, and in their dissonances provide some lovely creative tensions.

One minor quibble with this post...Senge was certainly involved and interested in the U process, but the credit for its development should really go to Otto Scahrmer, whose website explains in much detail what that all is:

At 7:29 AM, Blogger Roger said...

Thanks for the correction and great link Chris - as you say much more detail.

A comment from you reminds me that I didn't mention Open Space Technology :-)

Something I've read a fair bit about but not experienced yet...

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