Humanness: The Antidote to Leadership Dysfunction

As I’ve read and considered the various ideas contained within any number of leadership-related books, the idea of dysfunction being related to our humanness, or lack thereof, becomes increasingly clear. Whether it be the concept of dehumanization in some ways leading to, and in some ways being an effect of, oppression; or whether it be the idea of dysfunction stemming from a lack of being loved and being able to love; there is an emerging theme.

It seems that the more we, within the context of organizations and relationships, can be more appropriately human, the more healthy and functional those organizations and relationships will be. It seems overly simplistic, but perhaps that’s the beauty of it. As we learn to better love and serve, dysfunction begins to diminish.

If on both sides of the leader-follower relationship there is a willingness to be more “human,” for lack of a better term, the relationships, as well as the group or organization, will begin to function more appropriately. As teams and groups embrace their humanness, they will be more willing to serve others (since they’re our fellow humans), admit faults (since to err is very much human), listen to input (since different minds bring different and possibly better perspectives to a given situation), and so on.

So my question, then, is this: Within our organizations, how can we encourage others to be more appropriately human and functional, and as a result serve others well, admit faults, solicit feedback, and the like? How can we encourage both leaders and followers within our respective organizations to embrace their humanness, and as a result become more functional?

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