How to speak manager: followership
This week, in the latest in our occasional series on how to understand managers, we look at followership.
1. Followership will replace leadership as the management buzzword of the moment. Although followership is an ugly word and arguably not a proper word at all, it’s only a matter of time before it finds its way into common use.
Followership is based on the logical principle that when everyone is a leader, nobody is. Followership is an attractive concept when people fear the leaders are heading over a cliff or into the path of an oncoming train.
Leaders can’t help leading, but intelligent followers know when to give up.
2. Health issues will be safely out of the limelight as MRSA and swine flu pale into insignificance against the management issues of the day.
3. Paling into insignificance, once a sign of inadequacy or an early symptom of ill-health, will now be regarded as a positive indicator of followership potential.
4. Pointy management will be discredited. Broader management coalitions and flatter management structures will result in shared decision making and responsibility. Pointlessness will become a virtue.
5. Followers will get carried away by their own lack of success and become the natural leaders of the future.