Leadership Coaching Tip

June 2010 / Leadership Coaching Tips

The Magnetic Leader as Crucible – How to Create a Transformative Space without Scorching People

by Zoë Routh

Zoë Routh

Change and learning can be difficult and painful–hence the notion of “crucible” experiences: an event that was challenging or even harrowing acts as a transformational experience, much like a crucible provides a container for huge temperatures that initiate a re-structure of its contents.

Leaders too can act as crucibles–creating a stable steady environment to contain the fury within as change crackles and burns. Transformation occurs, but it’s an overwhelming, painful process.

Change need not be so punitive. Magnetic leadership principles offer a more gentle and compassionate process for growth. Trial by fire can be replaced with metamorphosis within a gentler container.

Magnetic leadership principles resonate with Integral Leadership concepts: the inter-connectedness of individual perceptions with external realities. However, there is one fundamental difference–magnetic leadership stems from a deeper concept of connectiveness–where all beings are inter-related on an energy level, beyond the connections of a social system, or by proximity, or even by values systems. There is no separation–only the one we imagine for the joy of the creative process.

Magnetic leadership is based on the understanding of co-creation: you and I are here as co-creators of our shared experience. Though we perceive each other as separate entities by our limited physical senses, we are connected through consciousness and the energy that makes up all things. This has been referred to elsewhere by scientists like Lynn McTaggart as “the Field.”

So how does this kind of knowing help the individual leader?

If we define leadership as the process of growth and change for a common purpose, we can identify the leader as a deliberate creator and partner in achieving that common purpose. The leader’s role is then at once deeply introspective and profoundly outward-focused in its connection to others.

The first responsibility of magnetic leaders is to clarify their own vision and desires in sensory-rich images and language. Next they need to seek alignment with that vision through rehearsing its manifestation–through processes like writing out a vision statement, affirmations, creating visual cues and anchors for its manifestation.

Magnetic leaders becomes a crucible–a gentle one!–when they start to engage with others who are attracted to a similar vision and whose values resonate with their own. Others are attracted more fundamentally to the energy vibration of these leaders. This works as the leaders tell the story about their vision and values, it creates an emotional response–emotional frequencies–that act like radio signals; those who are dialed in to the same “channel” join in. This is why it is so essential to be mindful of the stories we as leaders tell about what we want to achieve–if we are constantly repeating how things are hard, difficult, and challenging, then we will attract people and experiences who resonate with those vibrations.

To maintain the softer crucible space for transformation and manifestation of this common purpose, magnetic leaders have a few key responsibilities:

  1. A continual and unrelenting attention to their own inner vibration to the “frequency” of love, compassion, joy, and peace.
  2. A continual and unrelenting sense of compassion for others, and most especially for themselves. Magnetic leadership principles don’t even really make that distinction–if you are not showing compassion for yourself, you are not genuinely offering ito others because all is a reflection of the inner state of being.
  3. A continual and unrelenting practice of self-love and self-appreciation, through things like positive self-talk, adequate sleep, rest, nutrition and such.
  4. Maintaining the creative tension between appreciating where they are as an individual, group, organisation or community (even if it is unpleasant and uncomfortable)and anticipating with delightful expectation the new state they are evolving towards. This is in sharp contrast to the need to deny, defy, berate, criticise or push against current realities in order to create a new future. This is the hard way–the old crucible way–of creating change–and it takes a lot more energy and effort.

Magnetic leadership pathways offer a more peaceful way of experiencing change, and one that builds its own positive momentum: the better it feels, the better it gets, the better it feels, the better it gets.

The leader’s challenge is to start with and stay in the purpose of “feel better” without needing the external reality to change first. This is the path of self-mastery–the inside out approach to leadership. And it’s incredibly magnet!

About the Author

Zoë Routh is a Magnetic Leadership coach and expert with over 20 years experience in leadership and personal development, maximising the potential of youth and adults through outdoor adventure. She has worked with thousands of individuals and groups and counts amongst her previous leadership roles Staff and Training Director of Outward Bound Australia, President of the Chamber of Women in Business, and Chair of the Outdoor Council of Australia. Zoë also develops and delivers leadership programs for the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation.

Her programs “The Magnetic Leader” and “Magnetic Teams” harness the power of deliberate creation for a more engaged and dynamic workplace: clients achieve goals faster and easier, having a lot more fun. In her various adventures Zoe has paddled 30 weeks by canoe in northwest Ontario, run 6 marathons, hiked hundreds of kilometers in Australia’s outback, belly danced at various festivals, lived through cancer, married a fair dinkum Aussie bloke, and wrestled a 6 meter crocodile. It’s all true, except for the crocodile part.

To receive a complimentary membership to the Magnetic Leadership Center with free interviews, resources, webcasts and more designed to help you make a bigger impact, subscribe at www.innercompass.com.au.

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