LeadSimm: Collaborative Leadership Development for the Knowledge Society


  • John P. Dentico


This paper has three purposes. First, it begins by discussing the basis of the industrial leadership models asserting that the traditional perspectives of leadership are no longer congruent for the challenges facing a knowledge based society. Second, it sets forth a perspective called collaborative leadership. Collaborative Leadership is a term derived chiefly by integrating the leadership models of Burns (1978), Rost (1993) and Foster (1989) and melding them with the characteristics of the learning organization espoused by Senge (1990). The term collaborative leadership is used to connote the extension and integration of these ideas into a practitioners model that is more congruent with the human intensive, organizational learning oriented, and interdependent intricacies and demands of a knowledge based workforce. It views leadership not as something the leader bestows or gives to his or her followers but as the essence of a collective relationship wherein people do leadership together. While leaders remain embodied individuals, leadership becomes a shared and communal concept (Foster, 1989). Third, since the conception of leadership is changed from the industrial perspective, that of a unitary actor who gives leadership, to a more postindustrial point of view, that of leadership as a collaborative dynamic, a learning method which can demonstrate the efficacy of collaborative leadership and organizational learning is required. LeadSimm is discussed as one method that promotes this leadership and learning paradigm.