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Conscious and conversational leadership are key to ethical organisational practices

JUNE 24, 2017
Conscious and conversational leadership are key to ethical organisational practices

The concept of leadership is becoming increasingly ambiguous.

In fact, results of the World Economic Forum’s recent Survey on the Global Agenda showed that 86% of respondents believe the world faces a leadership crisis. In South Africa, one only needs to scan news media to notice the impact of this crisis on the lives of ordinary citizens.

With many South African leaders accused of corruption, bribery, and a range of unscrupulous practices, questions surrounding what it means to be a leader in the 21st century continue to be raised. 

This is especially the case when managers and leader demonstrate a decided lack of commitment towards moral and ethical awareness to lead teams and organisations into the future.

In particular, questions around conscious and conversational forms of leadership have emerged as important.

Consciousness opens doors to ethical leadership

There is an increasing body of evidence which suggests that higher levels of consciousness are needed to ensure the sustainability of all life forms.

Conscious leadership employs inspiration, evocations of greatness, mutual trust and truth-telling, and empowers leaders to have strong levels of trust in themselves and in their followers.

The incorporation of the idea of consciousness into leadership practices not only helps to add an ethical base to leadership endeavours, but also promotes forward-thinking, sustainability-focused business practices.

Conscious leadership promotes long-term thinking focused on the greater good, rather than on short-term benefits.

This type of leadership thinking opens greater opportunities for the creation of social justice, promotes a respect for the natural environmental and ensures that leaders make decisions aligned with their commitments to a strong sense of moral and ethical awareness.

Conversations encourage ethical and collective leadership

Honest, ethical and authentic conversations between leaders and their executives, managers and employees help to ensure transparency and allow leaders to gain greater insights into the needs and desires of their stakeholders. 

Collective leadership encourages employees, managers and executives to take greater responsibility for their work and actions.

By shifting power away from senior leaders and distributing it equally within organisations leaders can unlock greater levels of creativity and innovation, improve the self-efficacy of employees and build more performance-driven and inclusive organisational cultures.

This type of collective, conversational leadership facilitates open dialogue and debate, and provides a safe platform for frank discussions around organisational expectations and ethical practices.

What is ethical leadership, and how can it be harnessed to create and cultivate a stronger strain of forward-thinking, responsible and sustainable organisations? These are questions that will be answered and explored at the fourth annual Nelson Mandela Bay Leadership Summit.   

Speakers for this year’s event includes:

  • Sipho Mila Pityana, chairman of AngloGold Ashanti and Onelogix will discuss ethical leadership in times of questionable business and government conduct.  
  • Brand Pretorius, former chairman and CEO of McCarthy Motor Holdings as well as McCarthy Retail Limited, will examine ethical; behaviour as a pre-requisite for effective leadership.
  • Lincoln Mali,Standard Bank’s Group Head of Card and Emerging Payments across Africa in Personal and Business Banking and author of the blog www.leadershipconversations.co.za, is also on the line-up of presenters.
  • Nosipho Damasane, chairwoman of the Richards Bay Coal Terminal and a non-Executive Director of JSE-listed WBHO, will discuss the impact of ethical leadership on organisational performance and employee behaviour.
  • Dr. Jeff Govender, owner and MD of the Famhealth Medipark in Gelvandale PE, The Herald Citizen of the Year (2011) winner in Sustainable Development and board member of the Northern Areas Development Trust, will provide a case study entitled:  Famhealth Medipark story: Empowering Communities.

The event is an initiative of the Ukuvula Foundation and NMMU Business School, and is supported by sponsors Metrosecurity, KPMG, Mandela Bay Development Agency (MBDA), Standard Bank, Times Media Group, Engeli Enterprise Development, VWSA, Rennies and the Boardwalk.

The Nelson Mandela Bay Leadership Summit will take place on 28 June 2017 at the Boardwalk Convention Centre, Port Elizabeth.   To register and for further information on the Nelson Mandela Bay Leadership Summit 2017, visit:www.nmbleadershipsummit.co.za.  Alternatively contact Charmaine Smith
on 041 365 7591.