About Leaders We Deserve

Leaders We Deserve is a website designed to stimulate discussion of leadership in various fields of human endeavour. The author works under the Blogname Tudor. This was a pseudonym chosen while the site was in its developmental stages in late 2006. More details can be found on the author’s wikipedia page.

A designated site

Leaders we deserve has been designated a preserved and select site by the British Library web archive. Its citation states

The individual contributors to the UK Web Archive select websites according to their own collection development policies and areas of expertise. Selected websites are considered to be of long term research value and are chosen to represent a subject of social, political, cultural, religious, scientific or economic significance and relevance to the UK. We also receive nominations from siteowners themselves and members of the public.

About Tudor

I set up Leaders We Deserve after a period of enforced medical leave from my work as a teacher, researcher, and writer into these and related topics. In earlier incarnations I worked at a medical school in New York, a research laboratory for a corporation, and founded a small (but perfectly formed) management consultancy.

When not Blogging or conducting duties as a Professor at an International Business school, I can be found enacting the roles of husband, sometime radio and TV pundit (mostly unpaid), enthusiastic but hapless social tennis player, enthusiastic and increasingly hapless competitive chess player, and sponsor of projects aimed at promoting applied research into leadership, creativity and related topics.

Leaders We Deserve: The Concept

The concept behind the Blog’s title is that leadership can be treated as a social concept. We create our leaders, and to some degree build them up and destroy them. In that sense, we are responsible for the influence that leaders exercise over the rest of us. If we understand more about this, we may better understand and mediate the behavior of leaders. (In very early post, someone rightly pointed out the importance of clarifying ‘who are the ‘we’ in all this.)

Four hundred posts later [2009] and I suppose the main clarification is that ‘we’ refers to those influenced by and influencing a leader or leaders in any situated leadership event.

My previous studies had been mainly of business leaders, but I could see how there could be some similarities, and some differences in the leadership stories in other fields, for example in politics, military and sporting endeavours.

Leaders We Deserve: The Web Site

Leaders We Deserve was initiated after encouragement from colleagues who had been exploring the way Blogs might support information and creativity management in public and private organisations. These discussions had prompted me to see whether I could apply their ideas in my own fields of interest. I had spent a considerable amount of time editing journals in the late 20th century The experiment seemed important at the start of the 21st Century.

My (blurred) vision was to produce something that would be an on-line version of collegiate meetings exploring the contemporary leadership stories, and using them to test various conceptual frames and models.

Within three weeks of start-up, the feedback (mostly from those who had encouraged me into starting the Blog) had more than whipped up my initial interest into something to which I had become more deeply committed. To borrow another term, I have found great satisfaction in becoming part of a community of learning.

Join Up

At this stage [2009] I am still excited at the prospects for the Blog and how it might develop. I’m not launching a marketing campaign with the aim of growing the site for the sake of growing the site. I look forward to contributions from now and future partners in this venture.

200,000 hits later …

..and updating the page, the original intention still holds, which shows admirable consistence of purpose but perhaps also a stubborn resistance to change established beliefs.

A historical note

There is an earlier text Leaders We Deserve by Dr Alistair Mant and which was mentioned in a post following a comment by Dr Mant [May 2007].

Leaders we deserve as an educational aid

In 2009, LWD became a resource for MBA students around the world, within the Manchester Business School WorldWide blended learning programmes. Posts are selected and changed regularly under the themes Perspectives of Leadership (POL) and Global Events and Leadership (GEL). A team of over a dozen tutors help in the delivery of the posts which are used in project work, assignments and examinations.

51 Responses to About Leaders We Deserve

  1. Looking forward to joint the debate

  2. Tudor says:

    Thanks Steve,

    All suggestions welcome for blog topics, links, and how to improve the blog.

  3. Wissam Magadley says:

    Dear Tudor. Very interesting and thought provoking website / blog. Look forward to reading more of your punchy views and opinions.

    Regards

    Wissam Magadley

  4. Tudor says:

    Dear Wissam

    Thanks for the encouragement. I’ve got some nice ideas in mind. That fight between De La Hoya and Mayweather, the political fights in France, England, Scotland Wales; the takeover fights at Boots, Sainsburys. ABM Ambro are all happening … Best wishes

  5. Dow Jones/NewsCorp… Alcan/Alcoa…

    predatory leadership is the ongoing mantra

    by the way, have you defined ‘We’ yet?

    Good idea. thank you.

  6. Tudor says:

    Yes, there’s a lot going on.

    Down the corrider from me at work are to be found a group of financial researchers and a quite diverse set of views on the new modes of acquisition. Football (‘Soccer’) is turning out to be another source of insights.

    On defining ‘we’. I haven’t even defined ‘leader’ adequately. or even ‘deserved’. ‘We’ will be just as tricky.

    I’ll take refuge in the difficulties encountered by philosophers and social theorists.

    It’s very easy to assume acceptance within an audience of enough shared a collectivity views and beliefs, and to signal that as a ‘we’ statement. Very hard to remain aware (self-reflective) of differences that make a difference.

    Best wishes.

    Tudor

  7. Rosalba Frias says:

    Tudor, you study creativity and innovation in business. I am working on creativity in trainning teams for small and midum size companies in Latin America. what would you recomend me -books, papers, your own experiences.

    Thanks in advance

  8. Tudor says:

    Hi Rosalba

    First stop is networking. There’s a lot of stuff out there. I’d do some googling etc. If you want to work in languages other than English there will be good contacts through EACI (European Association for Creativity and Innovation). The Creative Education Foundation Buffalo has a great conference every July (I get there from time to time).

    The posts on this blog about project leadership also have some very nice extra materials for training, and hints for team workers and team leaders.

    Hope this helps and good luck in your work.

    Tudor

  9. Jonas Uy says:

    GudDay Tudor!

    I am an applicant one of the supermarkets in UK. Applying for Shift Team Leader..

    I was given a topic to demonstrate or explain about leadership behaviors, the 2 topics are “WINNING” and “CUSTOMERS PAYS OUR WAGES”.

    Can you please help me, any ideas, advises, topics, or any guide that will connect the role of a Shift team leader. WINNING” and “CUSTOMERS PAYS OUR WAGES”.

    Looking forward with you help. Thank You..

  10. Tudor says:

    I hope other readers will reply. You might start with ‘what is the job of the shift leader?’. It probably involves encouraging team members to have positive attitudes in dealing with customers. Or ‘putting people first’ as it is said. The topic means you have to think about how you would lead and motivate team members to win and put the customer first.

    How to do that? Depends on the shift leader’s job.

    I have been very impressed by the ideas of service companies such airways, and even project work in autoindustry such as Toyota. You’ll find examples in posts in the blog.

    Best wishes

  11. Tony Czarnecki says:

    This is an excellent site, event at this early stage. I wish you all the success.

  12. Tudor says:

    Thanks Tony. Welcome to the site. I hope it has some sustainability …

  13. Bruce Llynn says:

    Looks like a great hands on, practical look at leadership with relevant illustrations of the dynamics we all study.

    BTW, where is the RSS feed on this blog so I can get your updates as you post them?

    Bruce Lynn

  14. Tudor says:

    Hi Bruce

    I’ll ask the folk who make up for my incompetence in things like feeds. Meanwhile, I try to respond to the news 3 – 4 times a week. I’d like each post to work as a stand-alone unit to help anyone interested in leadership, including students in various parts of the world.

    In the meanwhile, suggestions for ideas and themes are always welcomed.

    Best wishes

    TR

  15. Tom says:

    Hi, Tudor:
    I have found your blog very informative.

    Could I ask a question? In business Education, what is the difference between Case method and Project-based approach?

    Thanks.
    Looking forward to hearing from you soon

    Tom

  16. Tudor says:

    Dear Tom

    Thanks for the query

    The (classical) Case method developed out of Harvard relies on deep study and interpretation of a text or case study. The project-based approach is quite different. It involves students in real-time business projects, often with a client or sponsor. The organisation acts as a kind of living case. But the learning tends to be more experiential. There are more unexpected happenings, more scope of learning how to deal with the unexpected. More challenges and learning too, for the faculty involved.

    Best wishes

    Tudor

  17. Matt says:

    Hello Tudor,

    Maybe I’ve found a kindred spirit. I’ve been developing a theory on the nature of predatory leaders and the connection between the kind of person who commits domestic violence and the person who commits corporate or international violence. Let me know if you would like more info.

    All the best,

    Matt

  18. Tudor says:

    Hi Matt

    Yes, please send info, either to me or the site. I know our Moscow correspondent (forrmerly our Australian correspondent) will also be interested at

    http://leaderswedeserve.wordpress.com/category/jeff-schubert/

  19. Thierry PIERARD says:

    Hello Tudor !

    Nice reading somme of your contributions.
    Actually, I was searching the identity author of the impressive photo of an Airbus A380 taking off (or landing) to get a copyright of it.
    Could you, please, help me in that matter ?

    Many thanks in advance.

    Kind regards.

    Thierry Piérard / EFFITEXT (Writing Services & Communication)
    Puteaux, France

  20. Pitso says:

    South Africa has just seen a bitter leadership battle come to a conclusion on the 18 Dec 2007. One leader, Thabo Mbeki was unceromoniusly dumped for a popular leader who might not be be as capable as Mbeki, but just a lot more humane! He embodies a picture of a servant leader, but whether a developmental state can deserve a nice guy for a president remains to be see. This is a wonderful portal Tudor! Well done. Pitso

  21. Tudor says:

    Hello Pitso,

    You are one of several people who pointed out the importance your election. I do agree it deserves closer international attention, and I’ll be following the story over time.

    Best wishes to you, and the developments in your country (which will be increasingly in the news around the world as the football world cup approaches).

  22. asianwindow says:

    I think this is a great concept. Just a thought: it seems to me that the vast majority of your ‘leaders’ are from the West. What about China, India, the rest of South Asia? I find sometimes that much of the information I get on the Internet (which, ironically, is after all a world without borders) is primarily through the Western/developed world prism, and this includes even such wonderful sites as 3QD.
    Namita

  23. Tudor says:

    Oh, I couldn’t agree more. The problem is ias you say, access to information. I get mine from the susual sources.

    I have an offer to make. I will be interested to learn of the most instructive leaders that could be considered, (both good, and bad) from those cultures and regions we do not cover enough. One of the most popular posts quite recently was on Nelson Mandela.

    I am a great admirer of the methods and achievements of Ghandi, and I can think of other Asian examples (although there seems to be a cultural reticence to ‘build up’ the leader in a way that might support the cult of the personality . Am I on the right track assuming that is particularly so in Chinese cultures?).

    I hope to set a challenge along these lines for my business students., and will draw attention to the comments above.

  24. Christopher Scott says:

    Hi,

    I have just discovered your site, thanks to a link from Robert Peston’s BBC blog.

    Your site looks fascinating (I’ll be back later to explore it more fully), but seems to have one glaring omission: climate change / global warming.

    Surely there is no greater leadership challenge facing mankind today, than that presented by this subject.

    I have searched the blog for ‘climate change’ and ‘global warming’ and found only a couple of results for each, with none of those pointing to an article devoted to the leadership challenge presented by the subject.

    There is also no Category on the subject, or on anything obviously, or even distantly, related to it.

    My overall take on climate change / global warming is that the threat is so great, and the implications for our way of life so all embracing, that the vast majority of people (‘leaders’ included) simply behave as if no changes are occurring – as if the subject simply does not exist.

    Current events are revealing how comprehensively leadership has failed in the financial world – a world which is wholly man-made, and therefore, theoretically, under our total control. Imagine how much more difficult it will be to provide leadership with respect to a subject over which we have the most limited control, if any at all.

    Surely the leadership challenge raised by climate change / global warming merits a Category here, and profound discussion by all interested in the field. The challenges are immense.

  25. Tudor says:

    Thanks Christopher. Point taken. I’ve ducked the issue in the past but it must be on the agenda for this blog.

    I’ve been planning to drop the use of categories and use post-specific tags, but your main point remains a valid one, and I will add catagories as you suggest. You have also sensitized me to watching for climate/warming topics.

  26. shawn says:

    very interesting idea

  27. d0D says:

    i am an uneducated man with no political desires or real tangible knowledge of climate change or its effects on humanity.
    However i do feel that if humanity were to be wiped out with all the fury of mother nature being unleashed, that would we the most wonderful of poetic justices ever known to our parasitic race.
    I also feel that things have gone too far now and no amount of new energy saving systems or gadgets can save us now, maybe at best prolong our demise but no more than that.
    Thank god , or the entity that some people call god or just thank time and its incredible healing power! less is definitely more when it comes to humans, the sooner we start practicing safe sex and stop over populating what we have the better! then and only then can we seriously start to affect climate change for the better.

  28. Vic says:

    Good stuff and kept me occupied when I should have been doing other things.
    What do you think of the proliferation of leadership academies as a solution to the identified problems of succession planning in business and public services? The sector I work in has 80% female employees and I thought your blog could offer some more insights for women leaders.

  29. Tudor says:

    Hi Christopher, dOD and Viv

    Thanks for messages. We are all struggling with these issues. I can offer from experience that there are increasing numbers of business students asking for more on environmental change on MBA courses.

    RE women leaders. I was taken to task by a student recently for lack of attention to women leaders. My (perhaps weak) reply was that I would be better as a sympathetic voice who is a bit conscious of accusations of being ill equpped to add to the debate.

    It was advice offered to David Cameron this week, after his ‘pull yours socks up’ speech in Glasgow.

    Best wishes

    Tudor

  30. Sarah Lee says:

    Hi Tudor
    I really enjoyed looking through your presentation on A Brief History Of Leadership. I’m just setting up my own business after 20 years in the community development sector and wondered if I could quote some of your material in a leadership workbook I’m writing?

    Many thanks for any help you can give
    Sarah

  31. Tudor says:

    Hi Sarah,

    I’m more than happy for you to quote material crediting its origins. Please provide a link to Leaders we deserve.

    As you probably know, there are grey areas regarding image rights for images. While I believe the images are OK in the form I’ve used them, I can’t guarantee it for replication in any other format. You would have to make a judgment for yourself.

    It would be important if you are intending to commercialize the workbook .

  32. Anthony says:

    Tudor,

    I was wondering what your take was on the latest new chairman at Eastlands? Having read the interview in the MEN today there seems to be a complete about face in the handling of the club and the way they are trying to sell themselves to a still wary fanbase.

    It strikes me that the first chap to front the buy out was put up in a similar way to Labour’s floating of new policies. Throw something out into the media and try and gauge the reaction, then, implement a ploicy based on that reaction. It seems that the ADUG group were not happy with the first reaction and now they are taking a much more softly softly approach to whole thing.

    In the interview he even gives the quote “We are sensible people and though there will be money to spend, when it comes to a lot of the talk that has been around, forget everything that has been said in the past.”

    Is this an example of good leadership? Responding to the feelings of the people you are looking to lead, in this case fans and even a (publicly) slightly sceptical manager or does it show weakness and a lack of clear direction? Or, do you think I am giving then too much credit and the whole thing is being run on the hoof?

    Thanks

    Anthony

  33. Tudor says:

    Nice point. How would you assess what’s going on.

    I’m inclined to look at track record. This group has a track record of big spends in search of capital returns. They have the best advisors money can buy including Amanda Staveley and others I don’t know about.

    This is not the impulsive behaviours of a lot of the ‘old’ English owners who seemed to have no advisors (or disregarded advice) over communicating their plans (if they had deeply constructed plans).

    But this week’s financial turmoil must had led even the wealthiest consortia to review and maybe change their plans

  34. Mohamed Zain says:

    Lack of Leadership skills in the current Malaysian Prime Minister, Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

    I’m not sure whether you’ve heard of the name. But he is the 5th and the worst PM the country has ever had. In 2004 his party won the election with a hugh majority on the the platform of fighting corruption and nepotism.

  35. Mohamed Zain says:

    Lack of Leadership skills in the current Malaysian Prime Minister, Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

    I’m not sure whether you’ve heard of the name. But he is the 5th and the worst PM the country has ever had. In 2004 his party won the election with a huge majority on the the platform of fighting corruption and nepotism. But, he failed miserably to deliver on his promise. Consequently, during the last election in March his party almost lost the election. They failed for the first time to obtain a two-majority. What’s worst is that he refused to accept responsibility and be accountable for the defeat by resigning. He keeps on clinging to the power, without a slightest feeling of shame to the point where practically every one is fed up with him. Now, in addition to the threat by Anwar Ibrahim, the opposition leader, to take over the government by influencing the government MPs to switch to his party, he is now faced with opposition from his own party members. I think his days is numbered.

  36. Tudor says:

    Thanks. I know Leaders we deserve should pay attention to a wider range of leaders around the world.

    Some years ago when I visited Malaysia I couldn’t help noticing the influence of Dr Mahathir including the ’2020 vision’ which he seemed to ‘own’. And PM Badawi was his no 2?

  37. Fernando Gimenez says:

    Dear Tudor,

    I am still working at the state government in Paraná (Research Funding Foundation) and teaching at Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Paraná. Have you and Susan developed further TFI? What is the latests version?
    Do you believe creative leadership might be useful for non-profit organizations?
    Does anyone have information on creative leadership and entrepreneurship association?
    I will circulate your site to my students. Best wishes.
    Fernando

  38. Hi Tudor,

    It is still early days for me in terms of my accademic expose of Leadership as I have just begun an MBA with Manchester Business School, but at 43yrs I have seen a number of good and bad examples.

    I live in Dubai (and have done for 28 years) and I am perplexed at why Arab business have not gone global other than through acquisition or through expatriate management (Emirates). They have the cash and the desire to diversify away from hydrocarbon dependency, so what’s holding them back?

    I would be interested in hearing your views on leadership in this context and in relation to the ‘family run business’ which I think may be at the heart of the answer.

  39. Tudor says:

    An interestng question. I know that some colleagues are going to be in Dubai examining just such issues later this year.

    I’m sorry I won’t be with them, but will ask them what they think about your ideas.

  40. Paul McDonald says:

    Hi Tudor

    Did you see the latest BBC Panorama episode, “Will the Scots ever be happy?” that looked at 10 years of Scottish devolution and the push for Scottish independence? I know you’re not a great fan of Alex Salmond but I’d love to hear your perspective on the leadership issues of such a fascinating debate.

    While I felt the programme had a slight unionist bias (Brian Taylor, the BBC Scotland political commentator who presented the programme generally makes worthwhile attempts at impartiality but is known to favour the unionist cause) it done a reasonable job of covering the great depth of leadership issues in the debate – speaking to cultural, political, industry and military leaders.

    Watching the programme, I had an overwhelming sense that if Scotland’s historical leaders were alive today that they would be experiencing a great sense of deja-vu, with the leading advocates of the unionist case promising wealth and power (economic unions, influence at the UN, part of a stronger military), and the advocates of independence promoting the fundamental principals of sovereignty and self-determination.

    I do sense that the debate is becoming far bigger than it ever has before, and with very capable political, cultural and industry leaders sitting on both sides it makes for fascinating debate.

  41. Faggot43 says:

    A potential disadvantage of doing it in general is that the subconversations would become more isolated from each other and it would be harder to discuss connections between them. ,

  42. joann says:

    Since I decided to get into a higher education system, PhD to teach new blood managers how to do business. However, during practising English skill, I got to fly over tough situations. Physically, I couldn’t fly as my usual but it made me find the ways to make a bigger change in my country. I just got the real meaning in a book, Jonathan Livington Seagull I red 20 years ago at the first year of my bachelor. I am going free…

    http://blog.nationmultimedia.com/1204/2009/10/01/entry-1

  43. Hello, I found your blog in a new directory of blogs. I dont know how your blog came up, must have been a typo, Your blog looks good. Have a nice day.

  44. Duncan Maru says:

    Great site that I chanced upon. I haven’t seen much on your site about leadership in global health (my field), and would be interested in your comments. I thought you might find of interest a recent academic paper we published on transparency and collaboration in global health:

    http://www.plosmedicine.org/article/info:doi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pmed.1000158

    Feel free to tear it apart :).
    Regards,
    Duncan Maru, MD, PHD
    Co-Founder, Nyaya Health

  45. Tudor says:

    Dear Dr Maru

    Thanks for your kind comments. I would welcome suggestions such as yours for items on global health. There are several subscribers who are interested in this field (I wish I knew more about it). Your article adds to my inexpert view that complex community interests are best shared by distributed leadership systems supported by the emerging web-2 and beyond technologies. I’ll be passing on your comment and article to my contacts.

    Warmest regards

  46. Tudor says:

    Since the blog was started there hs been a rise in comments which amount to a few lines of spam. These will be deleted in absence of evidence (Editorial judgment) of human agency wishing to make a genuine contribution. Almost all such comments appear on specific posts rather than on this home page.

  47. I’m not sure whether you’ve heard of the name. But he is the 5th and the worst PM the country has ever had. In 2004 his party won the election with a huge majority on the the platform of fighting corruption and nepotism. But, he failed miserably to deliver on his promise. Consequently, during the last election in March his party almost lost the election. They failed for the first time to obtain a two-majority. What’s worst is that he refused to accept responsibility and be accountable for the defeat by resigning. He keeps on clinging to the power, without a slightest feeling of shame to the point where practically every one is fed up with him. Now, in addition to the threat by Anwar Ibrahim, the opposition leader, to take over the government by influencing the government MPs to switch to his party, he is now faced with opposition from his own party members. I think his days is numbered.
    +1

  48. Tudor says:

    You gave a clear clue about who this leader and one other subscriber also wrote about him. LWD always welcomes comments, but we remove those which do not promote informed debate. For example, it would interesting to learn your view (and that of unbiased observers) on factors which may have helped him won such a large majority and the ones which may have assisted his decline in popularity.

  49. Hi there. Thanks for the mention of Queen of Katwe which I have had the pleasure of helping with the PR campaign for. Phiona will be returning to the US in the early Spring for a forum presented by Newsweek.

    Have you checked out the doc Brooklyn Castle? It’s on iTunes now and is an overcoming adversity story from the US that is quite inspiring and a “calling card” for the value of chess in education. As our leadership problems can be traced to the problems we face in our education system, it’s worth looking at this as a way to achieve improvements for our kids and our society. I hope you’ll take a look.

  50. Thanks Bob, I will check this out.

    Warmest regards

  51. Hi Robert,

    thanks for the comment. If I am not following your blog let me know.
    BTW the ICC coverage of the Candidates was superb.

    Best wishes, Tudor

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