VIRTOUS LEADER (Q3.2)

An Effective Leader Who Seeks A Virtous Outcome

F3’s definition of Leadership is very simple. It is the act of Influencing other people to and through Movement toward a particular Outcome, which the Leader both Visualizes and Articulates for his followers. He Influences them by igniting a palpable desire for action in their hearts.

The act of Leadership has no inherent ethics

In other words, some Leaders Visualize bad end states and some good. A definition of Leadership that omits men who Visualize evil ends would blind us to the very real power to Influence possessed by a Caesar or Castro.

Many “bad” men have been Effective Leaders, but the only bad Leaders are those who are in-Effective because they cannot Influence—regardless of their motives. Thus, a “good” man can very well be a bad Leader because he is in-Effective. Likewise, a bad man can be a good Leader (although to evil ends) because his Influence is manifest to anyone willing to see it before it is too late.

Group-blindness to the bad man/good Leader is caused by the confusion and conflation of Leadership Skills with Leadership Characteristics

Leadership Skills are the abilities possessed by a Leader that enable him to do what a Leader does, which is to Influence men to and through Movement. There are four Leadership Skills (which F3 defines under the acronym VAPE):

1. Vision

2. Articulation

3. Persuasion

4. Exhortation

In contrast, Leadership Characteristics are the attributes possessed by a Leader that make him what a Leader is (which F3 defines under the 5Cs):

1. Candor

2. Commitment

3. Competence

4. Contentment

5. Courage

When we assess Leadership it is the Characteristics (the 5Cs) that define the character we would ideally like our Leaders to have, but it is the Skills (VAPE) that dictate whether or not a Leader will be able to Influence

Because Leadership Skills are so rare in most Groups, a man who has them in abundance will have significant Influence even if he is totally lacking in Leadership Characteristics. Put another way, not being what a Leader is will not stop a man from doing what a Leader does. This type of man, the high-Skill/low-Character Leader is Effective, but he is also a menace to his followers because his lack of Virtue will end with him leading them off the edge of a cliff.

Conversely, a man steeped in Leadership Characteristics will have little Influence if he does not also have the Leadership Skills required to ignite a palpable desire for Movement. Put another way, being what a Leader is will not enable a man to do what a Leader does. This type of man, the low-Skill/high-Character Leader will, despite his Virtue, inculcate Institutionalism in his Groups and end up turning Lizards into a Bullfrogs.

But that rare person who possesses both the 5Cs and VAPE will be an Effective Leader who seeks Virtuous Outcomes.

The Virtuous Leader has both skillful hands and integrity of heart.

One Reply to “VIRTOUS LEADER (Q3.2)”

  1. Good stuff. It helps me understand myself a little better. Despite having the desire to lead things which seems to come from deep within, I often feel after the opportunity that I left a lot on the table. I suspect I am severely lacking in the leadership skills. I guess we can just do the best we can with the gifts we were given.

    Ironically I have little stomach for “leadership” training.

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