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4D Leadership

4D Leadership – Competitive Advantage Through Vertical Leadership Development

Twenty years ago the accumulation of skills, knowledge and experience (‘horizontal development’) was sufficient for business success. Today, it’s not. 4D Leadership – Competitive Advantage Through Vertical Leadership Development, offers a new approach of ‘vertical development’.

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Are you “all there”?

If you are a James Bond fan you will be familiar with the character of Q. A geeky individual who comes up with some very clever stuff that helps Bond maintain his edge. Well, at Complete Coherence we are lucky enough to have our very own Q, or “O” as well call him (his name is Orowa Sikder). Having an “O” is an invaluable asset in any company especially when you’re using science to facilitate human development. O is one of the most brilliant people I have come across. O was crunching numbers the other day on our Leadership Values Profile (LVP), one of our developmental assessments built to measure the sophistication of an individual’s values. We´ve done a few thousand now which means that O has a lot of data to work with.

One thing the LVP can reveal is how different your values may be in your personal life compared to your values at work. O noticed a pattern that he brought to our attention. Specifically, the values of individuals in an organization often tend toward an organisational norm. In contrast the value systems the same individuals operate from at home are much more diverse. This suggests that many organisations are either creating a monoculture or that many people do not bring all of their uniqueness to work.

This may not be that surprising. After all, we know that our values are predominantly forged by our circumstances and inner development. But it does spark a couple of questions:

  1. What is happening in an organization to make people feel they can’t bring all of themselves to work? Is it costing them energy to ‘play the part’ when they show up?
  1. Are you, as a leader, inadvertently suppressing the diversity around the table to such an extent that you are killing meaningful debate and impairing the wisdom of the crowd?

Which brings us to the main point of my blog. Diversity in business is not just a matter of ethnicity, race, age, education or sexual orientation. The real power of diversity comes from people with different value systems which drive different view points, different ways they the see the world, offering multiple perspectives to generate more innovative answers.

In order to unlock the disruptive and innovative power of the crowd, we need to have more meaningful debates to generate better results and more sophisticated nuanced solutions. In a VUCA world we need teams and organizations with greater values diversity.

To understand how to unlock the power of diversity and develop your organization’s true competitive advantage you might find the blog by my colleague and CEO Dr. Alan Watkins helpful. Or even his recent book, 4D Leadership: Competitive Advantage Through Vertical Leadership Development.

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Gestur Palmason

International Practitioner Gestur Palmason has in a short period of time become an established and recognised coach in Iceland. He has coached individuals in various sectors including sports, politics, business, healthcare, media, and government agencies

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