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The Forum > Article Comments > Political leadership: What’s that? > Comments

Political leadership: What’s that? : Comments

By Don Allan, published 1/11/2011

Politicians of substance have become noticeable by their absence.

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Initially, the author had me convinced that he was going to say something interesting about contemporary Australian politics. Then came the offensive line about a supposed Oligarchy composed of Labor, Greens and "alleged" Independents".

What about the fact that Labor is the only party ever to have formed a government federally by itself? Every post-WWII government of the alternate persuasion has been cobbled together from (at least) Liberals and Country Party or its successors, the Nationals. They, like the "Oligarchy", had characteristics including compromise, negotiation and internal differences.

This article is about management and its application in the political environment. As with management in a corporate environment, leadership of government and opposition properly involves applying management skills, essential amongst which is the ability to unite people to achieve common aims. There are many other facets of management apart from the human. Great managers also maximise results from the use of time, labour, finance, materials, opportunity and much more, but this author has not gone there, so neither will I.

The author's own selected quotes indicate that there is nothing at all wrong about bringing differing points of view together for a common purpose. There is, thus, nothing inherently wrong about multi-party alliances either in Government or Opposition.

Jack Welsh: "Good leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision and relentlessly drive it to completion." Nothing here about leadership applying only within homogenous groups, or the exclusion of others.

Andrew Keith "...process of social influence in which one person can enlist the aid and support of others in the accomplishment of a common task." This clearly implies that differences are harnessed for the collective good, with plenty of room for multiparty arrangements.

And so on.

The author has allowed his anti-Government tendencies to destroy that which could so easily have been excellent and thought-provoking. Through criticism of one side of his subject area and silence regarding the Opposition, he has failed to "enlist the aid and support of others". He doesn't know as much about true management, especially in a socio-political environment, as he thinks he does.
Posted by JohnBennetts, Tuesday, 1 November 2011 11:39:44 AM
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If you want leadership, campaign to have binding Citizen initiated referenda incorporated into our constitution (trumping all other political authority), and redraw our election process so that ministers are directly elected for their portfolios- rather than voted as the best proxy vote their constituents had to chose from, get granted a position from a backroom deal.

That way, the public's expectations should be clearer for each ministry, and there is less room for scandal.
Posted by King Hazza, Tuesday, 1 November 2011 5:16:58 PM
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