05 August 2010

Tomorrow: Online with the Globe on Narcissistic Leaders

I've been invited to participate in an online conversation at the Globe and Mail site on the topic of their recent article, Narcissistic Bosses and Why You Should Love Them. I'll be joined by Eric Cousineau, the person about whose presentation at the Toronto OD Network I wrote a couple of years ago. It will be interesting to see what he has to say (I'm guessing that we won't necessarily see eye-to-eye on this one). The article cites author and academic Michael Maccoby, who:
...views narcissism as being largely beneficial, if not inevitable, in entrepreneurs and chief executives – beneficial because narcissists are innovators, inevitable because narcissists, being ambitious, are the most likely to rise to the top.
Really. I can't say that I agree with him about narcissists being innovators necessarily, but certainly about them rising - or perhaps stomping on people below - to realize their ambition of being at the top and in charge. His key thesis, that good leaders have an "interrelated set of skills - foresight, systems thinking, visioning, motivating, and partnering - that he terms 'strategic intelligence'" is generally unassailable. However, suggesting that these are exclusive traits of narcissists - even so-called productive ones - is nonsense. And putting up the strawman that the opposite of someone with "strategic intelligence" is a "consensus-building bureaucrat" offensively ignores the reality of collaborative leadership in a contemporary context.

The online conversation is here, and runs from 10 to 11 a.m. EDT, tomorrow, Friday, August 6. If you're available, please hop online and join the conversation. 

[Technorati tags: | | | ]

No comments: