On Aug 17, 2009Prasad, iJourney Visual Editor wrote :
I read the book by Keshavan Nair and deeply touched by his call for a higher standard of leadership. Even though it was several over 10 years ago and Mr. Nair is no more, it is more relevant now than ever. When I saw this passage, I felt a sense of sadness.
The idea of leadership and its connection to power is very critical to management thought. Somehow, as the author points out, higher leadership position means higher power. Interestingly, Gandhiji who held no position or great leaders from various traditions — like Jesus Christ, Lord Krishna did not influence people from a place of power but from a place of wisdom. In Hindu mythology, leadership actually begins at the heart chakra. It is about ‘anahata’ -- unstruck sound — no longer governed by cause and effect that makes leadership different and special from management. The lower three chakras represent three modes of management: Muladhara Chakra representing survival is about management through fear. Swadhistana Chakra representing pleasure and desire is about management through rewards and incentive. Manipura chakra representing greed is about management through power and control. They are Theory X, Theory Y and Theory Z in some form or another. But leadership is not about any of them so it is not connected with position, power, rewards or fear. It is about influence — getting people into the same flow that you are in or you getting into the same flow that they are in. it has nothing to do with role in the organization or community. In that respect, it is about tapping into personal power and tapping into power that is in others and igniting it.
I feel that only leadership that matters is the higher standard of leadership where one practices what one preaches, has commitment to share what is felt in an appropriate and developmental way to people around him/her and has the courage to follow the path of the heart. In some respects that alignment of head, heart and hands is integrity for me and integrity is the first and most important leadership step.