Wednesday, November 09, 2011

It's the Way You're Viewed

"... being nice, contributing costly resources to the group, acts of generosity—these all increase your prestige. Other people admire you and say, ‘Oh, that’s really great. This is a kind person who’s doing all these wonderful things.’ But it decreases your dominance. It makes you look not so tough.”

So says research released by the Kellogg School of Management, which also highlights that prestige matters. Clearly, there is a delicate balance between these two concepts and it goes beyond surface impressions and fleeting actions.

People respect power when those yielding it demonstrate compassion (or at least consideration) for the people side of the equations. Yet a steely disposition trumps the winsome smile. So, a challenge for leaders is to examine the culture in which they operate and to understand the people involved in the dynamics -- reflecting just the right combination and/or shaping qualities in those who are intended to rise to the top.
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