Saturday, September 27, 2014

“Peter Drucker and Thought Leadership” - Professor M.S.Rao

"Leadership is not magnetic personality, that can just as well be a glib tongue. It is not "making friends and influencing people", that is flattery. Leadership is lifting a person's vision to higher sights, the raising of a person's performance to a higher standard, the building of a personality beyond its normal limitations." — Peter F. Drucker

One day when I was reading newspaper, my elder son asked me the correct definition of leadership as he was confused with too many definitions on leadership in search engines. I told him that there is no fixed definition on leadership as every management thinker comes out with his own definition. Additionally, if you hit search engine on terms ‘leaders’ and ‘leadership’ you get half a billion hits, and there are so many definitions on leadership. Some management thinkers say that leadership is all about example. Some management thinkers define leadership is all about ethics. Likewise, there are plenty of definitions on leadership. Finally, I shared my definition of leadership as follows:

Leadership is not about giving fiery speeches. Leadership is not about winning people. On the other hand, leadership is about being passionate about people, setting vision, walking the talk, inspiring people to come together on a platform to build a team, making decisions, clarifying their concerns, motivating them, and aligning their energies and efforts as per organizational goals and objectives to achieve organizational excellence and effectiveness. 

Then my younger son who was sitting beside him asked me the actual definition of thought leadership. I found his question more interesting and challenging to respond as there is no fixed definition on thought leadership also.  I shared with him the definition of thought leadership as follows:

Thought leaders are experts with amazing ideas and insights on their industries and areas. They have wealth of knowledge and experience.  Those who possess and share it with others excel as thought leaders. Thought leaders are the intellectual capitals who rise from the position of knowledge workers. The top politicians and leaders approach thought leaders for intellectual inputs and ideas. For instance, Warren Bennis consulted American presidents as a thought leader. Thought leadership is defined as the process of engaging thought leaders to create knowledge, grow knowledge, and share knowledge with others for the benefit of society.  It was Peter Drucker, the father of modern management who coined the concept of knowledge workers. He rightly remarked, “Knowledge has to be improved, challenged, and increased constantly, or it vanishes.”

The knowledge workers and thought leaders are going to rule the world as they are the true human capital to build a better world as the world is rapidly shifting from manufacturing sectors to services sectors.

“The most important, and indeed the truly unique, contribution of management in the 20th century was the fifty-fold increase in the productivity of the manual worker in manufacturing. The most important contribution management needs to make in the 21st century is similarly to increase the productivity of knowledge work and the knowledge worker.” - Peter F. Drucker

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Professor M.S.Rao, India
Founder of MSR Leadership Consultants India
Listed in Marquis Who's Who in the World in 2013
21 Success Sutras for Leaders: Top 10 Leadership Books of the Year (San Diego University) Amazon URL:

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