Purposeful Leaders are Winning Hearts And Minds In Workplaces

Outlining the importance of purposeful leadership.


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Purposeful Leadership incorporates positive ethical values. In regards to people, the goal of purposeful leaders is to create the environment and provide the encouragement that inspires his or her team to perform at its best. Now scientists outlined the importance of purposeful leaders in a new report for the CIPD.

Scientists at the University of Sussex suggest that when the leader show strong morals, a clear vision, and commitment to stakeholders, his/her team seems to be happier and more productive.

When the leaders show purposeful behaviors, their employers willing to go the extra mile, better performers and less cynical. Through this study, scientists just tried to fill the gap between the two terms, what causes the purposeful leadership and what impact it has.

Professor Catherine Bailey at the University of Sussex said, “Our study shows that the modern workplace is as much a battle for hearts and minds as it is one of rules and duties.”

“People increasingly expect an organizational purpose that goes beyond a mere focus on the bottom line, beyond the kind of short-terms, financial imperatives that are blamed by many for causing the 2008 recession.”

“In turn, they respond to leaders who care not just about themselves but wider society, who have strong morals and ethics, and who behave with purpose.”

Almost one in five UK bosses describes themselves as a purposeful leader. They found as highlight a largely untapped opportunity for modern organizations to improve performance by reshaping the role of managers.

The study suggests that organizations can do more to promote purposeful and ethical leadership. For example, adoption of relevant policies, leader role-modelling, alignment around a core vision, training and development, and organizational culture.

Laura Harrison, Director of Strategy and Transformation at the CIPD said, “Building on a number of studies on trust, decision making, and corporate governance, this study begins an examination of an under-considered facet of leadership, purposefulness.”

“Much has been discussed about the critical nature of invoking and ‘living’ purpose in an organization, but little around the alignment of this purpose to the internal, perhaps hidden, moral compass of an organization’s leaders.”

“The challenge now is how we enable and support the development of leaders that people actually want to follow.”

Dr Amanda Shantz at the University of Greenwich says, “The real challenge is not in trying to achieve a perfect match between purposeful leaders and organizational values, but in ensuring that they complement each other in ways that best suit organizational circumstances at a given time.”

“This includes supporting leaders to successfully recognize and negotiate the differences between what they stand for and what the business intends to achieve, without detriment to the individual leader or the company’s operations.”


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