Hero Archetype In Leadership

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Sam Palmisano, former CEO of IBM recognises that the old model of a heroic superman or superwoman is increasingly archaic. Kellerman (2005) notes the imposed exit of Hewlett Packard, Disney’s CEO and leaders elsewhere actioned by board and shareholder activists’ disapproval. Appointed or anointed heroic leaders risk public dethronement if their rhetoric is incongruent with expected leadership behaviours. The theoretical hero archetype when animated has recently demonstrated its ineffectiveness on many levels within todays multi-variate organisational contexts as we shift from the industrial era to the Knowledge era. Stakeholder disappointment and the residual damage suffered by society have assisted in dismantling this outdated model. Corporate…show more content…
Exposed corrupt leaders in the past appear to rise like a Phoenix from the ashes to reinvent themselves within another organisation. The U.S. financial crisis of 2008-2009 destabilized the global banking system yet many of the finance leaders remain unaccountable never experiencing the full impact of financial devastation resulting from their immoral and unethical behaviour (Gramm & Solon,2012). The Edelman Trust Barometer’s global survey (2017) reveals that only 15% of the global population have trust in the system which is business, government, NGO’s, and media. Their findings state that globally trust is in crisis, it is systemic and resulting in populist action. Voters in many parts of the world see political leaders as incompetent (unable to implement economic solutions) and untrustworthy (the solutions that are implemented are self-serving and benefit a select…show more content…
Global challenges and diversity economics have recognised the absolute need for transformational leadership and focus has shifted from a single saviour leader to that of leadership group processes (Bass 1990). Tourish et al. (2010) note that organisations modelled on the leadership style of former CEO Jack Welch are unitarist and that no credit is attributed to the immense number of his GE followers that guaranteed both his and the organisation’s phenomenal success and longevity. In a, less romanticized hierarchical leadership model Enron leadership muted upward communication from followers to leaders by a "rank and yank" process, ultimately controlling by fear. The organisation is the collective sum of each follower’s individual energy and their commitment. The antiquated CEO single leader model who is the captain of the ship responsible for steering, directing and can see ahead into the horizon because he/she is operating from a higher vantage point.The leader emphatically relies on the efficient, diligent operations of the followers below in the engine room, powering the ship forward, navigating turbulent tides well in advance, communicating upwardly with urgency permitting course correction to ensure safety of the ship and their Captain, CEO.
The NHS and Royal Pharmaceutical Society have stated that they no longer identify with the hero model and must practice an engaging leadership approach. The NHS

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