Thursday, June 30, 2011

Collaboration Does Not Equal Consensus

The most recent HBR is all about collaboration. Morten Hansen has some great insights.


"Collaborative leadership is the capacity to engage people and groups outside one’s formal control and inspire them to work toward common goals—despite differences in convictions, cultural values, and operating norms.


Most people understand intuitively that collaborative leadership is the opposite of the old command-and-control model, but the differences with a consensus-based approach are more nuanced."

Below are some helpful distinctions between the three leadership styles. Just wondering what you think?

COMPARING THREE STYLES OF LEADERSHIP


COMMAND AND CONTROL

CONSENSUS

COLLABORATIVE

ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE

Hierarchy

Matrix or small group

Dispersed, cross-organizational network

WHO HAS THE RELEVANT INFORMATION?

Senior management

Formally designated members or representatives of the relevant geographies and disciplines

Employees at all levels and locations and a variety of external stakeholders

WHO HAS THE AUTHORITY TO MAKE FINAL DECISIONS?

The people at the top of the organization have clear authority

All parties have equal authority

The people leading collaborations have clear authority

WHAT IS THE BASIS FOR ACCOUNTABILITY AND CONTROL?

Financial results against plan

Many performance indicators, by function or geography

Performance on achieving shared goals

WHERE DOES IT WORK BEST?

Works well within a defined hierarchy; works poorly for complex organizations and when innovation is important

Works in small teams; works poorly when speed is important

Works well for diverse groups and cross-unit and cross-company work, and when innovation and creativity are critical






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