E L S U A ~ A KM Blog by Luis Suarez

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IBM THINK Forum – Servanthood – A New Kind of Leadership

P1030573I am not sure whether you may have been watching in the last couple of days, one of those special events that I can surely guarantee you is going to help out redefine the whole concept of Management AND Leadership as we know it. As part of this year’s many worthy events around IBM’s Centennial celebrations, the last couple of days have been rather interesting following the IBM THINK Forum live event in New York City, where a whole bunch of really engaging, thought-provoking and inspirational speakers have been sharing their wisdom on what leadership is all about, but, most importantly, on what it takes to become a true leader in today’s, more complex than ever, (business and societal) world.

If case you may not have seen it just yet, there is still plenty of buzz with multiple people live tweeting the event, but also some phenomenal live blogging done by Steve Hamm for Day 1 and for Day 2, where you can get a quick glimpse of some of the main highlights as well as a good bunch of video clips, as short snippets, that can certainly give you plenty of great insights on what happened during those couple of days. And talking about those videos I would love to spend a couple of minutes sharing along what, so far, have been my two favourite clips from the overall event.

The first one coming from Mary Galeti, Vice-Chair The Tecovas Foundation, where she comes to discuss, in a little bit over a minute, how the leaders of today, and definitely, of tomorrow, are the new servants of the knowledge workforce, where they are no longer managing their employees, but leading them to excel at what they are truly passionate about. More than keep moving along with that traditional command and control attitude, she turns the whole thing around indicating how what really matters is helping out people become better at what they do and move out of their way! Whoah! Very powerful words to live by, for sure, and a clear indication of the impact of living social within the enterprise, and probably beyond, too!, seeing how embracing the Social Web philosophy may certainly help in shifting gears and help realise executives as well it’s much more beneficial, for everyone, to provoke a fundamental change in not only how we operate, collaborate and share our knowledge across out in the open and perhaps much more transparently, but also how we need to redefine our new leadership role(s) within the corporate environment, and in our own societies, to match today’s complex environment and its ever growing needs. Worth while a look for sure!

The second favourite video clip is another one that doesn’t last more than a little bit over a minute and which features a rather peculiar interview by Errol Morris with Sam Palmisano, IBM’s CEO, and where he shares what, to him, leadership is all about. No, I am not going to spoil it for you much more than this, other than stating it’s quite refreshing to see how Sam himself identifies some of the key traits that are also permeating throughout the Social Web in helping identify the new leaders of today, errr, I mean, tomorrow. And watch out!, because those same characteristics would apply to our leaders in society today! Worth while having a look, specially, given the context of where Sam is coming from, i.e. celebrating those 100 years of existence from IBM itself and laying down the ground for the upcoming challenges for the next 100 years!

Finally, there are plenty of other rather short interviews and video clips that came out of the IBM THINK Forum event and which I would strongly recommend you watch as well, specially, the ones by Joi Ito‘s, amongst several others in order to witness how world leaders of today are seeing their leadership roles shifting into preparing the way for the leaders of tomorrow … starting today!

No time to waste…

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