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I recently read an excellent article on the Towinsome website. I felt it was so good and thought provoking I would like to point people to it, especially leaders. Although it is written primarily for non-‘Western’ cultures it raises some very interesting and challenging points about assumptions it is easy to make. Thanks Andy for writing this.

 

“The things that go without being said are some of the most important parts of culture.” – E. Randolph Richards

I am not anti-American. Neither am I anti-leadership.

But I am going to list 10 reasons not to read American books on leadership, especially regarding church leadership.

These kind of books seem especially laden with tacit values that may have been contextually true in the place of writing, but are definitely not true in many other places.

1. Requirement of being a Linear-active planner, therefore eliminating most people in the world from ever being comfortable wearing this type of leadership.

According to the Richard Lewis model of culture, most Multi-actives could not be successful leaders because they will not be strategic, logical, planned or on task, and most Reactives could not be successful leaders because they do not initiate, create or drive. The problem is, I know many godly, faithful and yes, successful leaders who break all of Maxwell’s laws and don’t cultivate any of Covey’s habits.

2. Homogenization of leadership personality type (the “Extrovert Ideal”)

Susan Cain in her popular book Quiet: the power of introverts in a world that can’t stop talking is good on this. Her book was extremely successful, but it hasn’t changed the ingrained American leadership culture. I can remember wishing I was a Myers Briggs ESTJ (because all the leaders I admired were ESTJs), even though I am INTP, an introvert. “Introversion – along with its cousins sensitivity, seriousness, and shyness – is now a second-class personality trait, somewhere between a disappointment and a pathology. Introverts living under the Extrovert Ideal are like women in a man’s world, discounted because of a trait that goes to the core of who they are. Extroversion is an enormously appealing personality style, but we’ve turned it into an oppressive standard to which most of us feel we must conform.” – Susan Cain, Quiet

To read on click here…

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2 Responses to “10 reasons not to read American books on leadership”

  1. […] found this article through Nigel Ring’s blog, and found it so helpful, provocative and challenging that I wanted re-post it here. It pretty much […]

  2. […] found this article through Nigel Ring’s blog, and found it so helpful, provocative and challenging that I wanted re-post it here. It pretty much […]