We all have some “centres of gravity” around which we orbit.
Family, Business, Idea, Cause. No matter where we go, they exert their pull and will always bring us back.
It used to be that the organisation we worked for was a major centre of gravity. It helped define us, provided a career and a social network, and gave us security. It was a major pull, and other centres of gravity were secondary. Other planets orbiting our organisational sun.
That’s changing. In a world where everything is more connected than ever, and people are more mobile than ever, the pull of the organisation is weakening.
In its stead, is the idea. People are increasingly attracted by the ideas that affirm them, and they will gravitate to those who best express those ideas. As individuals, they get their security from their craft and their network, not the HR department of an organisation that thinks of them as resources.
The power of the organisation as a structure is fading, but the power of what it stands for, and can be seen to stand for beyond money, is rising.
Authority derived from position is fading, whilst authority generated by what people stand for and enable is increasing.
The power of scale is decreasing, whilst the power of connection and context is increasing.
It is redefining what it means to be a leader.
Whether as individual or organisation, our leadership authority is only as powerful as what we demonstrated yesterday.