Six Ways to Successfully Lead Your Team


Posted on August 22, 2017 by Alice Jackson
Alice Jackson


Dr. Craig Pearce, center, is the co-author of the new book “Twisted Leadership” and the Ben May Distinguished Professor in the Mitchell College of Business at the University of South Alabama. data-lightbox='featured'
Dr. Craig Pearce, center, is the co-author of the new book “Twisted Leadership” and the Ben May Distinguished Professor in the Mitchell College of Business at the University of South Alabama.

It’s time to get twisted, because leadership is a mess these days.

That’s the advice of Dr. Craig Pearce, co-author of the new book “Twisted Leadership,” and the Ben May Distinguished Professor in the Mitchell College of Business at the University of South Alabama. Pearce and collaborator Dr. Charles C. Manz, the Nirenberg Chaired Professor of Business Leadership at the University of Massachusetts, are receiving rave reviews for the book.  

Both authors, internationally recognized experts in the field of leadership, declare that the old-fashioned notion of centralized, top-down, hierarchical leadership, where “petty dictators” lord influence over subordinates, is a modern disease that fosters corruption, abuse of power and the waste of human talent. Instead, the duo prescribes a comprehensive cure to “twist the disease” out of the system and create new leadership synergies with the “Four ‘Ss’ of  Twisted Leadership” – Self-leadership, SuperLeadership, Shared Leadership and Socially Responsible Leadership.

Pearce says the book’s top points include:

  1. View Leadership as a Process: Most people think of leadership as something for people in positions of power to exercise over people below them. Leadership, however, is something that can, and should, involve everyone, rather than being assigned to one, or a few, fallible human beings. Most people are capable of leading some of the time, depending on their knowledge skills and abilities and the requirements of the task at hand.
  2. Emphasize the Importance of All Four ‘Ss’ of Twisted Leadership: Self-leadership, SuperLeadership, Shared Leadership and Socially Responsible Leadership form an intertwined, synergistic approach that offers the ability to optimize leadership potential. Individually, each of these four ‘Ss’ of twisted leadership are useful leadership tools. Together, they forge a comprehensive, resilient, sustainable approach to engaging the full talents of everyone.
  3. Build Self-leadership Capacity: We typically think of leadership as something that is directed at others. The reality, however, is that to effectively lead others we first need to be effective at leading ourselves. Effective self-leadership entails proactively choosing, not only what we do and how we do it, but also spending time thinking about why we do the things we do. This is the true core of effective leadership.
  4. Engage in SuperLeadership: SuperLeadership is the process of leading others to lead themselves. If leaders become too enamored with their own brilliance and feel compelled to be the source of all wisdom—and all decision making—they run the risk of  becoming burned out, and underutilizing the leadership potential of others. With SuperLeadership, the emphasis is on discovering the hidden talents of all, enabling others to contribute their unique expertise and building the leadership pipeline.
  5. Unleash Shared Leadership: Shared leadership is all about collaboration, except that it goes well beyond a group simply acquiescing to directives from some centralized authority. Shared leadership entails dynamically relying on multiple individuals for leadership and followership depending on the knowledge, skills and abilities of the individuals involved, as well as the unfolding requirements of the tasks at hand. Everyone can be an expert at least some of the time. 
  6. Focus on Socially Responsible Leadership: We live in a fast-paced world. It is very easy to become distracted by short-term issues, financial and otherwise. Socially responsible leadership, however, requires focusing on higher-level values and ideals—the long-term reasons why we pursue particular paths. By emphasizing a long-term perspective focused on higher-level values and ideals, we enable people to be more fully engaged; we create a more foundational sense of belonging; we facilitate the ability for all to work toward the big picture; we create a sense of meaning and purpose. Simply put, socially responsible leadership is the life-blood of sustainable twisted leadership.

Craig L. Pearce is a highly sought after keynote speaker and international management consultant. He has been featured in such publications as the Wall Street Journal and Financial Times Agenda. He is a Fellow of Pennsylvania State University. His latest book can be found on MavenHousePress.com. He can be reached at cpearce@southalabama.edu.


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