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Print This For Your Managers: Old Leader Vs. New Leader

From today's post by my friend Kathy Rapp at Fistful of Talent:

Harvard Business Review Blog ran an article titled, “What Does Professional Look Like Today?” and I’m going to use the chart from the article in my class.  Instead of “professional”, I’m using “leader”.  See what you think:


  • I am closed to the world
  • I can’t make mistakes in public
  • I don’t reveal my personal interests to the world
  • I am expected to have the answers to questions
  • Power is taken and held


  • I am open and accessible to the world, strengthening my relationships with people
  • I am human, when I inevitably make mistakes, I apologize quickly and sincerely
  • My interests, hobbies, passions make me interesting and attractive
  • I am searching for answers with my network of colleagues and supporters
  • Power is shared and grown

#Word.  Transparency and authentic nature is the new power.  


Jocelyn Aucoin

I. LOVE. THIS. And if I could use something bigger than caps, I would. Transparency and authenticity are definitely the new power. These were always powerful things, just not recognized as such in a work setting. Social Media has helped show the power behind being transparent and being yourself and that people don't need to hide behind these masks of pretend. No one was ever fooling anyone back then anyway, were they? Old leaders were just eliciting more pain in their workers - creating environments of dishonesty where people hated going to work for "the man." I'd like to think that those days are on their way out. There are definitely better ways to lead and work and I'm glad people are seeing this!

Karen K

Very nice. This showed up in my LinkedIn "This week's top news, tailored for you" feed. Very cool.

Toni Legrand

There are plenty of diverse ways to lead. If a leader is true to himself the followers will sense this. I must say the openness seems to be a style easily supported by technology with twitter, mobile phones, Facebook, LinkedIn, websites, and e-mail. I think we are still learning the power of these technical contributions to leadership. And doesn't it figure that great leaders will immediately see the potential for efficient human input, openness, and harness the technology.

Brenda Martinez

My manager, is all this and more. He is a Leader in the truest sense. He has told all of his staff that he is working for and with us. We look forward to coming to work everyday!

Gil Burns

Very interesting article until we get to the "Old Leader ~ New Leader" contrasts. As I read these descriptions the Old Leader, or Old Professional as described in the HBR article, it seems to describe a minority of managers who from my experience would be described as poor leaders who thrived in Theory X organizations. These managers were marginal at best. Also, I don't think that the comparisons are fair. A more precise comparison would be comparing old leeaders(Theory X leaders in excess) to New leaders (Theory Y leaders) also managing in excess. Furthermore, social media has been the hidden killer for the success of many people. I don't think Facebook is the right place to be. I'm going to the supermarket now3 is not relevant.

Jason Murray

Absolutely spot on! I was just having a conversaiton with a colleague comparing our style of management (New Leader) to the management of others ( Old Leader). Everything we discussed is on these two categories.

Alex @ Kapta Systems

Being a leader today requires also being a mentor. It is easy to tell an employee what they should be doing but it is more important to show them.


These types of prints are very common on work places as they encourage a positive behaviour by management and by employees. By understanding better their role in managing people in today's dynamic environment, management can do a better job at getting the best out of people, and not expecting them to be an extension of the machine or of their computer terminal. Likewise, management must be respected by employees for who they are: persons entrusted with authority, but still human beings who are susceptible to making mistakes and admitting them.

Bharat Pawar

Very true. Today's leaders are more transparaent and open than old ones which is indeed a natural instinct and needed tp manage today's workforce. Its always better than cryptic in nature.

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