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Network Leadership

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I delivered a lecture on Network Leadership to the new batch of EMBA students of Institute of Product Leadership

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Network Leadership

  1. 1. Network Leadership Tathagat Varma Country Manager, Nerdwallet
  2. 2. Personal views
  3. 3. Warm-up •Think of leaders whom you’ve worked with, and who have influenced you personally! •What did they have or do differently?
  4. 4. Leadership Ability to influence people in order to accomplish a common task
  5. 5. Dozens… Autocratic Leadership Democratic Leadership Laissez-Faire Leadership Transactional Leadership Task Oriented Leadership Interpersonal Leadership Transformational Leadership Charismatic Leadership Distributed Leadership Participative Leadership Directive Leadership Ethical Leadership Authoritative Leadership Authoritarian Leadership Intellectual Leadership Instrumental Leadership Coercive Leadership Team-oriented Leadership Delegative Leadership Autonomous Leadership Coaching Leadership Affiliative Leadership Supportive Leadership … http://www.hrpub.org/download/20160331/UJM2-12105627.pdf
  6. 6. Organizations are evolving… https://paulsohn.org/organization-3-0-embracing-theory-in-the-21st-century/
  7. 7. https://www.forbes.com/sites/joshbersin/2018/04/03/the-rise-of-the-social-enterprise-a-new-paradigm-for-business/#2ce1126971f0
  8. 8. Leadership has also co- evolved… Great Man Theory 1850s 1900s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s 2010s ? Trait Theory Behavioral Theory Contingency and Situational Theory Servant, Charismatic and Transactional Theory Transformational Leadership Theory Integrated, Leaders-Manager, Adaptive, … Theory
  9. 9. Great Man Theory •Propounded by Thomas Carlyle in 19th Century •Great leaders were born with innate traits, and only “great” “men” possessed them! •Thus, leaders are born and not made!
  10. 10. Great Man!
  11. 11. Trait Theory Leaders possess leadership traits! Major traits include: • Intelligence • Self-confidence • Determination • Integrity • Sociability
  12. 12. Traits evolve! https://www.sagepub.com/sites/default/files/upm-binaries/30933_Northouse_Chapter_2.pdf
  13. 13. Big Five Personality Traits Strong relation between Big Five and Leadership
  14. 14. Big Five •Openness: The tendency to be informed, creative, insightful, and curious •Conscientiousness: The tendency to be thorough, organized, controlled, dependable, and decisive •Extraversion: The tendency to be sociable and assertive and to have positive energy •Agreeableness: The tendency to be accepting, conforming, trusting, and nurturing •Neuroticism: The tendency to be depressed, anxious, insecure, vulnerable, and hostile
  15. 15. Limitations of Traits •No definitive list of traits (it appears endless!) •Doesn’t take situation into account •Very subjective determination of traits •Not very useful in training of leaders
  16. 16. Are traits enough in today’s orgs?
  17. 17. Power The potential or capacity to influence other people or groups
  18. 18. French and Raven’s Bases of Power, 1959 •Reward •Coercive •Legitimate •Expert •Referent •Information (Raven, 1965)
  19. 19. Influence To influence is to have an impact on the behaviors, attitudes, opinions and choices of others. Influence is not to be confused with power or control. It’s not about manipulating others to get your way. It’s about noticing what motivates employee commitment and using that knowledge to leverage performance and positive results. A leader’s ability to have influence with others is based on trust; in fact, our influence expands in proportion to the amount of trust that exists in a relationship. http://training.hr.ufl.edu/resources/LeadershipToolkit/job_aids/LeadingbyInfluence.pdf
  20. 20. Social Power and Influence Social Influence: A change in the belief, attitude, or behavior of a person (the target of influence) which results from the action of another person (an influencing agent), and they defined Social Power: The potential for such influence, that is, the ability of the agent to bring about such a change using available resources. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_and_Raven%27s_bases_of_power
  21. 21. Tannenbaum-Schmidt Leadership Continuum https://www.businessballs.com/team-management/tannenbaum-and-schmidt-continuum-delegating-to-a-group-and-developing-your-team/
  22. 22. https://expertprogrammanagement.com/2018/11/tannenbaum-schmidt-leadership-continuum/
  23. 23. https://www.situational.com/content/uploads/2017/10/FINAL_CLS_History_CaseStudy_Digital.pdf
  24. 24. Modern times! https://www.itlab.com/a-modern-workplace-with-microsoft
  25. 25. The times they are a- changing! https://twitter.com/nielspflaeging/status/818793310999474176
  26. 26. Real org chart!
  27. 27. Challenges?
  28. 28. Network Interactions, Dependencies & Interrelationships among people and/or groups
  29. 29. Hierarchy vs Network Hierarchies Networks Centralised Distributed Fordism: workers perform specialized tasks Flexible specialization: small-scale production teams simultaneously work on Employee traits: deference to authority, obedience, conformity Employee traits: autonomy, adaptability, problem solving, collaboration Ties are strong but few Ties are loose but many Tasks, managers, and departments are organized by function Tasks, managers, and departments are organized by project Communication is vertical command through defined channels Communication is lateral as well as vertical consultation Management derives authority from title, rank, and seniority Management derives authority from expertise and contribution Job descriptions and areas of control are narrowly defined Job descriptions are broad and boundaries are permeable Transaction and payment are the glue of relationships Trust and reputation sustain relationships Key decisions are centralized so coordination costs are low Decentralized decision making, so higher employee satisfaction and loyalty Performs well in stable, predictable environments Performs well in ambiguous environments that require efficiency and flexibility https://scholar.valpo.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?referer=https://www.google.com/&httpsredir=1&article=1210&context=jvbl
  30. 30. Evolution https://jarche.com/2017/06/organizing-for-the-network-era/
  31. 31. Future of work… https://jarche.com/2017/06/organizing-for-the-network-era/
  32. 32. Informal networks https://informalnetworks.co.uk/networks-101-what-are-informal-networks-and-why-should-i-care/
  33. 33. Reflection •Does you org have networks? Give some examples. •What are some of the ways you have seen work (or not!)
  34. 34. Network Principles for Collaboration Success •Mission, not Organization •Trust, not Control •Humility, not Brand •Node, not Hub https://scholarworks.gvsu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?referer=&httpsredir=1&article=1009&context=tfr
  35. 35. Mission Strategy Is Determined by Mission Impact Before Organizational Growth Focus on mission before organization. Effective network leaders build strategies that advance the mission even when it does not result in direct benefits to their organization. Four Network Principles for Collaboration Success - Jane Wei-Skillern, Nora Silver, 2013
  36. 36. Trust Build partnerships based on trust, not control. Leaders depend upon shared values and trust rather than top-down controls and accountability systems. High-impact networks are comprised of organizations that see the work of others in their network as integral to their ability to achieve impact. There is no hierarchy as to the value of various resources or skills that are brought to bear on the problem. Four Network Principles for Collaboration Success - Jane Wei-Skillern, Nora Silver, 2013
  37. 37. Humility Promote others rather than yourself. Network leaders exhibit a strong norm of humility above all else, sharing credit and foregoing opportunities for individual advancement and institutional growth and brand building. Humility is a hallmark of successful network catalysts. By acknowledging one’s own limitations, leaders focus less on developing their own competitive advantages and become more open to learning and engaging with others in the field. Sharing or even eschewing recognition for contributions to the network builds a reservoir of goodwill that motivates all participants to fully invest and lend their ongoing support to the network. This dynamic requires a dramatic mindset shift from one in which leaders try to exert maximum control over strategy and programs and focus on gaining recognition for themselves and their organizations. Highlighting the contributions of one’s peers engenders high performance throughout the network. Four Network Principles for Collaboration Success - Jane Wei-Skillern, Nora Silver, 2013
  38. 38. Node Build constellations rather than lone stars. Leaders who catalyze successful networks acknowledge their weaknesses as readily as their strengths. The goal is to build the larger system that is necessary for delivering on the mission, not to become the “market leader.” Networked organizations do not strive to be the brightest star, but rather to build the constellation that will enable achievement of the shared vision. They see themselves as nodes within an array of equal, interconnected partners, rather than as the center of their universes. The goal is not to become the leaders in their fields first and then engage in collaboration to further establish dominance. Instead, the goal is to mobilize the various organizations and resources that together can deliver more impact. Four Network Principles for Collaboration Success - Jane Wei-Skillern, Nora Silver, 2013
  39. 39. Network mindset shift From To Focus on growth Focus on mission Focus on control Focus on trust Focus on yourself Focus on others Focus on garnering resources Focus on sharing resoruces Focus on the particular Focus on the whole Four Network Principles for Collaboration Success - Jane Wei-Skillern, Nora Silver, 2013
  40. 40. Network Leadership Network Leadership involves establishing strong network performance by building, aligning, and enabling broad networks both internal and external to the organization. Network leadership is more about influence than control; it is also a more indirect than direct form of leadership, requiring leaders to create a work environment based on autonomy, empowerment, trust, sharing, and collaboration. https://www.cebglobal.com/content/dam/cebglobal/us/EN/top-insights/executive-guidance/pdfs/eg2014ann-rise-of-network-leader.pdf
  41. 41. Focus Areas • Leaders must help others build and connect to networks. • Actively model network participation • Ensure network diversity • Refresh and reform as necessary • Leaders must align and direct the network. • Reinforce the importance of strategy to networks and vice versa • Align network activities (and projects) to strategic goals • Recognize individual and group contributions • Leaders must energize and enable the network. • Build creative tension rather than just strive for harmony • Enable solutions rather than provide them • Enable autonomy at lower levels • Minimize organizational friction https://www.cebglobal.com/content/dam/cebglobal/us/EN/top-insights/executive-guidance/pdfs/eg2014ann-rise-of-network-leader.pdf
  42. 42. https://www.enterpriseirregulars.com/89399/strategic-role-digital-networks-corporate-leadership-today/
  43. 43. Network Leadership Functions http://interactioninstitute.org/network-leadership-roles-2-0/
  44. 44. Roles • Network Guardianship: is about preserving and modeling fundamental network values such as transparency, openness, respect, generosity, and mutualism. • Convening: A convenor is a person or group who has “convening power” and provides the social capital and connections to pull people together and some of the resources to support a given initiative(money, space, technology) and build the network. • Process Design: The “process design team,” is comprised of a diverse group of people representing different parts of “the system” upon which an initiative is focused who are responsible for mapping out a pathway (meetings, research, stakeholder outreach) that help to move a wider group of stakeholders from vision to action. They are charged with, and enjoy, the creative endeavor of fashioning experiences that enliven and bring out the best in people, including the creation of space for difficult conversations and strengthening connections. • Facilitation: The facilitator is a person or team responsible for stewarding the overall process, for holding the space for difficult and productive conversations, listening to the wisdom of the group, helping to build alignment and agreement, and balancing structured discussion with openness for emergent possibilities. • Weaver: A network weaver is someone who is aware of the networks around them and explicitly works to make them healthier. They do this by helping people identify their interests and challenges, connecting people strategically where there’s potential for mutual benefit, and serving as a catalyst for self-organizing groups. • Communications and Curation: Communications in change networks is a nuanced and complex role. It is about helping to create and fill a variety of channels (one-to-one, one-to-many, many-to-many) so that people can stay connected, share freely and learn in timely ways. In many cases, it is helpful to have a role committed to content curation (see image above) – to soliciting, aggregating, distilling, highlighting and organizing an abundance of information to keep the network humming. http://interactioninstitute.org/network-leadership-roles-2-0/
  45. 45. Additional roles • Provocation: The provocateur be an informal or formal role, and is filled by a person or people who can ask the otherwise unasked questions, challenge a group or initiative when it is reaching agreement too easily or getting too comfortable and safe with its work. The intent is to stimulate new and bold thinking. • Coordination: network coordination comes down in large part to creating and maintaining a support infrastructure, scheduling common meeting times, and ensuring that people have access to relevant resources. • Implementation/Prototyping: In networks, so-called “implementers” are not simply putting into action a “strategic plan,” but running with nascent and promising ideas, experimenting and honing as they go. We often find prototyping occurring at the “edges” of larger projects in the form of new partnerships and conversations going off and trying out new things – this is self- organization (see video below), where the magic in networks often emerges. • Governance: This is the function that people most often want to turn to first, because the knee-jerk reaction is to want to bring some order to any perceived chaos. How will we make decisions? How will we develop policy or make strategic recommendations? How will we get things done? Valid questions, and if the default is to a traditional governing board structure, a steering committee, it can limit network potential. “You only need enough structure to facilitate conversation and make key decisions.” Less is more, and structure can be fluid. A network principle that I find helpful to invoke is that of subsidiarity in governance – that is, matters ought to be handled by the smallest, closest to the ground or least centralized competent “authority.”  http://interactioninstitute.org/network-leadership-roles-2-0/
  46. 46. 4C Model of Leading the Network https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/976e/e9804412989593ed847df267e4c8df515b87.pdf?_ga=2.97947743.1356424061.1557596252-1599973263.1557596252
  47. 47. Networking inside a Network https://hbr.org/2007/01/how-leaders-create-and-use-networks
  48. 48. Competencies Conventional Competencies Network Leadership Competencies Teamwork Influence and Persuasion Communication Empathy Problem-solving Design Thinking Organization Focus and Creative Flow Time Management Resilience and Stress Management https://trainingindustry.com/articles/leadership/root-causes-and-network-solutions-a-pivot-in-leadership-development/
  49. 49. Training Conventional Leadership Training Network Leadership Training One-to-few delivery of expertise Many-to-many delivery of expertize Traditional classroom delivery Hybrid formats with huddle delivery Removed from work context - retreat-style Contextual and proximate to the work Focuses on individual action Focuses on collective performance Content based on top-down principles Content is dynamic and the network contributes https://trainingindustry.com/articles/leadership/root-causes-and-network-solutions-a-pivot-in-leadership-development/
  50. 50. Network Leadership in Corporates 1. Cultivate network capital 2. Work out loud 3. Engage the network 4. Orchestrate and co-create 5. Network as a sandbox https://www.enterpriseirregulars.com/89399/strategic-role-digital-networks-corporate-leadership-today/
  51. 51. Cultivate network capital
  52. 52. Work out loud!
  53. 53. Engage the network
  54. 54. Orchestrate and co- create
  55. 55. Network as sandbox
  56. 56. Managing growth? https://hbr.org/1998/05/evolution-and-revolution-as-organizations-grow
  57. 57. Org Practices https://hbr.org/1998/05/evolution-and-revolution-as-organizations-grow
  58. 58. https://www.enterpriseirregulars.com/52162/eight-ways-to-prepare-for-social-engagement-at-scale/
  59. 59. Recap
  60. 60. References • https://hbr.org/2007/01/how-leaders-create-and-use-networks • https://youtu.be/mkSYP-2lLR0?t=835 • https://youtu.be/u6-Afopw_SY • https://vimeo.com/229758158 • https://newnetworkleader.org/ • https://hbr.org/2007/01/how-leaders-create-and-use-networks • https://www.pcc-cic.org.uk/article/network-leadership • https://networkweaver.com/network-weaving-handbook/

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