Leadership and climate change – how leadership can help tackle the major challenges.

Following on from the above discussion of the major challenges, what then is the solution?

The solution is to have the global community, multinational businesses and the three major groups in society being people, government and industry moderated by influential groups such as the academic and scientific communities and the media, to become aligned on climate change, its causation, what the solutions are and what these solutions entail.

The solution of aligning all parties is extremely complex and is a wicked problem as described in Grint (2005, p.1473). Given this, leadership becomes essential because only a collaborative approach will be effective, as will asking questions rather than dictating answers (Grint 2005, p. 1477).

Leadership is about coping with change (Kotter 1990, p.36), and is a process whereby an individual influences a group [of individuals] to achieve a common goal (Northouse 2016, p. 6). Leaders use their influence to align groups to a common objective and then motivate them to action whilst challenging and changing the way they approach issues.

In comparison, management is about coping with complexity and bringing order and consistency (Kotter 1990, p.36).

Given the nature of climate change and the major challenges that need to be resolved, the recommended leadership approaches are: –

Transformational leadership because it plays a key pivotal role in precipitating change (Northouse 2016, p.162) and is concerned with how leaders can motivate followers to achieve things they didn’t know they could ever achieve or do things they didn’t even was possible. (Shatzer et al. 2014, p. 446)

To find out more about transformational leadership: https://youtu.be/ddt_IGMMOrI

Authentic leadership because it is leadership that is transparent, morally and ethically strong and has the followers needs and values at its core. (Northouse 2016, p.201)  Given the debate that is going on about climate change and the plethora of misinformation, authentic leadership will be effective because of the trust that followers have in the leaders about the messages being told by the leader.

To find out about more about Authentic leadership: https://youtu.be/dC7nLzd4CN4

 Leader-Member Exchange Theory (‘LMX’) will also be appropriate because within both transformational leadership and authentic leadership is a need for strong follower engagement by the leader to create high-quality two-way dialogues that build trust. (Northouse 2016, p.137) (Cropanzano & Mitchell 2017, p.875).

To find out about more about LMX: https://youtu.be/r9zsegKi8kc