Monday, September 29, 2008

Social Economy executives like to occupy the moral high ground

There are some humbling insights here for those in church leadership-

Due to the lack of resources, Social Economy executives tended not to benefit from the scope or extent of professional development in general management as their counterparts in the private business sector might. Consequently they have potentially lower general management capability and knowledge. There may be a number of consequences of this situation. Defensive mechanisms can develop to protect their position. Self-interest and ego may lead to an inflated view of that position or individual worth. When self interest as vested self interest takes over, some form of egoism occurs.

For-profit executives who haven’t spent much time in the sector might understate the full complexity of the challenges faced by Social Economy executives and their organisations. This naivety might create a false sense of confidence, exacerbating the gap between the for-profit and Social Economy executive in their communications.

But at the same time, due to the altruistic nature of their work, Social Economy executives like to occupy the moral high ground. As a cohort they also tend to be better educated (higher rate of higher university degrees) than their corporate peers. Thus, “crossed communication” can occur where both parties simultaneously adopt a superior, or “parent”, tone. The communication is not sustainable and breaks down in time. Contrary and Congruent Views of Leadership and Management in the Australian Social Economy. pg 93
So the challenge is a co-operative partnership that values each others contribution and deals with the old enemy pride.

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