The content in each of the three parts of this course is not presented merely as ideas to be understood and mastered. Rather, students work to master certain powerful contexts that shape and color the way in which the circumstances one confronts in leadership situations occur or show up, and how one occurs for oneself in such situations. When mastered, these contexts for leader and leadership result in the circumstances of any leadership situation, and oneself in such situations, occurring or showing up so that one’s naturally correlated way of being and acting is that of being a leader and exercising leadership effectively.
Part I: The Four Foundational Elements for being a leader and the effective exercise of leadership
- Integrity (in our model, a positive phenomenon): Being whole and complete – achieved by honoring one’s word as we define honoring (creates workability, creates trust).
- Authenticity: Being and acting consistent with who you hold yourself to be for yourself, and who you hold yourself out to be for others (leaves you grounded and able to be straight with others without using force).
- Being Committed to Something Bigger than Oneself: Source of the serene passion (charisma) required to lead and to develop others as leaders and the source of persistence (joy in the labor of) when the going gets tough.
- Being Cause in the Matter: Being cause in the matter of everything in one’s life as a stand one takes on self and life, and acting from that stand. It is not true that you are the cause of everything in your life, rather this is a place to stand – a place from which to deal with life that you have chosen for yourself. It simply says, “you can count on me (and, I can count on me) to look at and deal with life from the perspective of my being cause in the matter.” In taking this stand you give up the right to assign cause to the circumstances, or to others, or to the waxing and waning of your state of mind – all of which leave you helpless (at the effect of). When you see how this works it will be clear that taking this stand does not prevent you from holding others responsible. By contrast, when you have mastered this aspect of the foundation required for being a leader and exercising leadership effectively, you will experience a state change in effectiveness and power in dealing with the challenges of leadership (not to mention the challenges of life).
Part II: Our Contextual Framework – Distinguishing leader and leadership as:
- Linguistic Abstractions: Creates leader and leadership as “realms of possibility”
- Phenomena: Leader and leadership as experienced, that is, as exercised, or what one observes or is impacted by
- Concept: The temporal domain in which leader and leadership function
- Terms: Leader and leadership as definitions
Part III: The Ontological Constraints that limit the effective exercise of leadership:
- Ontological Perceptual Constraints: That which limits and shapes (distorts) what we perceive of the situations we are dealing with in any leadership situation)
- Ontological Functional Constraints: Automatic stimulus-response behavior that limits one’s way of being and acting in any leadership situation)