Saturday, January 3, 2015

Leadership Through Stakeholder Collaboration

Leadership is a necessary component of moving groups from one performance level to another. Leaders provide a focal point for collective action, a voice to the will of the people and decision-making capacity when problems arise. Responsible leaders are able to bring stakeholders together to accomplish some important goal. This isn’t possible without considering the multiple stakeholders in any worthwhile activity.

According to Doh & Quigley (2014) leaders are able to use psychological and knowledge-based pathways to impact micro/individual, team, organizational, and societal outcomes. Such leaders have the personal capacity to see how daily activities can impact larger groups of stakeholders to create higher levels of impact. Responsible leaders can impact organizational processes and outcomes to achieve goals.

Consider the different types of stakeholders interested in an organization and the levels by which these can be categorized. The individual worker has a stake in terms of employment, the manager in terms of impact, suppliers who earn revenue, and the general community and society who are impacted by the economic opportunities. The same organization can have multiple people interested in its functionality due to far reaching implications.

Instead of shunning this interest it is possible for responsible leaders to capitalize on stakeholders to create a better functioning organization both on the human-to-human micro level as well as the community level. Individual workers who live and exist within the organization naturally have an impact on the success of the organization and its impact on the community.

It may not seem like it is possible for one person who can have this much influence but this depends on how the leader creates proper workplace environments and open inclusive interactions that can draw interested parties. Consider for a moment how organizations that are fully engaged in the community have a  positive impression that helps their overall impression and public image.

Leadership requires the ability to see the vantage point of multiple stakeholders and how their perceptions envision and interpret organizations. By drawing in such stakeholders across multiple levels it becomes even more possible to increase the amount of collective effort but also draw new ideas from interested parties.

A large part of leadership is about opening up communication lines and developing new ways to get people involved in solutions. Leadership requires not only the ability to think strategically but also how to draw people into that strategic image. Finding a vision that most stakeholders can accept is necessary for greater collaboration and higher achievement.

Doh, J. & Quigley, N. (2014). Responsible leadership and stakeholder management: influence pathways and organizational outcomes. Academy of Management Perspectives, 28 (3).

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