I have made leadership studies my life’s work. After a 25-year search, this much I know to be true, the easiest way to cripple a person for life is to make them blind to their greatest potentials. Furthermore, the easiest way to become this crippling force is to neglect your own potential. Without an eye held on the potentialities of those we lead and teach, our efforts will always fall short of satisfactory. My leadership philosophy concerns itself with the art of leading human potentials towards their fullest expression. Call it healthy leadership. Taken as an art, a potentiating art, the nature of leadership becomes less mysterious and complicated. Potentiating, for clarification, is any action taken by individuals serving in leader roles that affectively causes something, or the relationship itself, to become potent—or, if you would prefer, creative, strong, capable, powerful, effective, empowered…healthy. Recipients of this sort of leadership flourish to their fuller potentials and to the benefit of the organizations/communities they serve.
I believe there is little doubt that where we find a healthy individual or healthy community of practice fully actualizing its potential, that we also find generativity. This notion of generativity is of critical importance to the overarching purpose of healthy leadership. Individuals serving in leader roles, who authentically express a concern for others with a willingness to nurture and guide others towards some greater and sustainable future, purposefully cultivate generativity. It is a simple formula:
Sustainable Practices + Capacity Building = Generativity
There are some inherent challenges presented by my philosophical approach to leading, teaching, and learning. It requires the maturity and emotional agility necessary for building interdependent relationships. These relationships flourish under healthy potentiating leadership. I have found that any other approach to the full actualization of human potential will only ramp up the proclivity for any learning organization to become an insensitive, impersonal, bureaucratic machine. The learner brings their life through the doorway of our learning institutions. A life that is lived with sensitivity, approaches living through personal expression, and requires healthy interdependent relationships in order to actualize their greatest potential. I am dedicated to this notion of healthy potentiating leadership.