Monday, 22 August 2011

Is new X Factor judge a natural leader?

Watching X factor last night was an interesting example of leadership. Louis Walsh, the only remaining judge from previous seasons could reasonably have been expected to take the 'head judge' place at the table and show the 'newbies' how it is done. However, from the first audition it became apparent that Gary Barlow was the true leader of the judges, with a range of actions and behaviours that led all of the other judges, Louis included, to follow him:
- He sat in the end seat previously occupied by Simon Cowell
- He sat back from the table, turned slightly away from the stage and towards the other judges in a casual gesture that indicated he was in control of the situation. This was in marked contrast to the other judges who all sat straight to the table facing the stage.
- When he disagreed with the views of the other judges he asked 'what are we doing' indicating that he expected their judging to fit with the previously stated objective of finding a 'global superstar' and indicating disdain for their childish endorsement of a clearly tone deaf Tai Chi instructor.
- He voted against the other judges in this situation clearly defining his willingness to be 'his own man' and not be swayed by the group
- During the breaks the other judges looked to Gary for leadership when returning to the stage much as the judges had previously waited for Simon Cowell to be ready before going back on stage.

Leadership is authority and control of a situation. You can decide if you want to take a leadership position in any given situation but your role will only be confirmed if others involved in the situation decide to follow you.

If you want to know about leadership, especially in the context of leading change within your organisation sign up for our change management course and develop your leadership ability to rival that of Gary Barlow (even if your singing is not up to much!)

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