Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.
— Ralph Waldo Emerson

Innovative Organizations are sustained post-heroic leaders.

A post-heroic leader creates a movement, individuals focused on their collective success, inspired and empowered to fulfill their own potential.  This leader knows that people will naturally collaborate, innovate, and aspirate in pursuit of a common goal when allowed to so; that movements are independent of any one leader.

In contrast, the heroic leader creates a following, individuals focused on their own success, and that of the leader.  This leader knows that followers will compete with one another for his or her recognition.  He or she ensures they are dependent on his or her heroic ability to save the organization from itself.

Post-heroic leaders strive to achieve results instead of recognition.  They know the pursuit of recognition is self-limiting, that it means ensuring those in your care perform only well-enough to achieve that goal.  They know that people perform best when they perceive autonomy and worst when they perceive leadership.

These leaders don’t think about organizational charts or titles.  When giving a job to do, they think only about finding the right people and then inspiring and empowering them to perform at their very best.

They’re not concerned with the size of their organization, only the content.  They will rehabilitate unproductive members, eliminate negative influences, and always protect the culture and ensure productivity.

And a post-heroic leader always plans for succession, keeping the movement going strong.

Post-heroic leadership is essential to economic growth.  Organizations that achieve economic growth lead, dominate, and disrupt their markets.

What about your leadership?