This post by Steve Keating is very much in line with my thoughts on new ways to define leadership levels (see last chapters of The Greats on Leadership). Nicely put!
Shadow Leaders are leaders in name only. They may have an impressive sounding title or hold a lofty position on an organizational chart but they exhibit few if any leadership characteristics.
They keep their head down, usually do solid work, and are relatively good followers but they stay in the shadows to hide from risk and they do not lead.
Risk involves making decisions, charting a new course, dealing with conflicts, or just trying new things. A Shadow Leader’s first priority is to protect their position and the income that comes with it.
Shadow Leaders focus on what is with little regard for the possibilities of what could be.
Shadow Leaders bring a larger than average expense to their organization for two reasons. First, their good work could be accomplished by someone without the lofty title and compensation. Second and this is worse, far worse actually, because they don’t lead…
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