Prof Vlado Dimovski (University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, and formerly a Minister in the Slovenian government) spoke on the topic of advanced approaches to leadership, from the perspective of his experience in Central and Eastern Europe.
After providing a summary of leadership in socialist Yugoslavia (where leadership was not discussed—indeed it was suppressed), Dimovski caught the audience's attention when he answered the classic question Are leaders born or made? with "Yes". In so doing he introduced the concepts of holistic leadership and complexity. He went on to challenge the superman leadership paradigm which dominates western thought and practice. Rather than criticising Western thought and practice outright—and promoting Eastern philosophies as "better"—Dimovski challenged the audience to consider the possibility that effective leadership might best be built on a "both–and" model. He then suggested three frameworks that may be helpful to leadership practice in the future:
Dimovski's paper was well received by the audience, some of whom said to me beforehand that they were expecting to hear from a "socialist evangelist". However this was not the case. We need to hear more from people like Dimovski.
Thoughts on corporate governance, strategy and boardcraft; our place in the world; and other topics that catch my attention.