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The Power of Leadership is a powerful and engaging simulation used in all types of leadership training. Here is a promotional article which offers an overview of the goals and premise of the simulation. You can see the main Power of Leadership information page here. We think you'll find it very helpful.
A New Perspective On Leadership.
The Power of Leadership simulation is ideal for encouraging people to think about leadership and power with a fresh perspective. This creates a willingness to learn about the specifics of leadership. A willingness that is not likely to be present with more traditional methods of teaching.
Specifically, the simulation stimulates an honest and open discussion about the use of power by leaders i.e., how power can be used effectively, pitfalls that must be avoided, the ethics of using power, and what happens when there is a perceived or real asymmetry of power between those who are leading and those who are following.
Power Is A Taboo Topic.
For many people, power is a taboo topic. A taboo that makes it difficult to talk, teach, or learn about leadership. And, because we’re reluctant to talk about power, it often means that myths, misperceptions, incorrect assumptions and various forms of self-deception are allowed to grow unchallenged.
It is the assumption of this simulation that power is intimately connected to leadership and discussing leadership without talking about power is like teaching someone to cook without mentioning heat. It also assumes that it’s easy to talk about leadership in the abstract and easy to lead an organization that has a willing and eager staff. But the real challenge arises when one must lead under less than ideal conditions i.e., the kind of conditions one meets in this experience.
The Nature Of The Power of Leadership Simulation.
This simulation takes place in rounds. During the first round, the system is designed to create a dysfunctional organization. Once the dysfunctional organization is established, the group has the opportunity to fix it. The situation is analogous to a new person being put in charge of a sick organization.
To be successful, the leaders must figure out how to lead the organization out of the quagmire that has been created. In doing so, they must get the groups to work for the good of the entire organization rather than compete among themselves. They must also manage expectations, redistribute the resources, review and revise policies and practices that need to be changed, and earn the trust and cooperation of all members of the organization.
How Does One Change An Organization?
- Evaluate the organization as a system.
- Analyze the implicit and explicit rules of the system.
- Identify those parts of the system that help you meet your goals and those that don’t.
- Figure out ways to change those parts of the system that need to be changed.
- Implement the change.
To Accomplish Change Participants Must:
- Use power effectively.
- Develop trust under difficult circumstances.
- Resolve conflicts between individuals and groups.
- Negotiate for resources.
- Establish roles and goals.
- Use higher order thinking to develop strategies and analyze the organization as a system.
- Use superordinate goals to reorder priorities.
- Establish a vision for the organization.
- Understand how power affects the perception of a leader’s message.
We don’t tell them that their task is to fix a dysfunctional system. Part of the learning is to discover that the system is not working well. In other words, we give them the opportunity to lead but it is up to them to take advantage of the opportunity.