Gary Quehl and William Bergquist
There are a variety of ways in which sage leaders say they help the organizations in which they are primarily engaged in their Generativity Four roles.
Emerging Sage Leaders
Seven themes reflect how the 50 Emerging Sage leaders say they most help their favored civic organizations: personal leadership, specialized expertise, collaboration, finance and fund development, youthful presence, thoughtful listening, and serving as mentors.
Providing Personal Leadership
By far the most important contribution that most Emerging Sages make is in providing personal leadership. Sometimes this involves serving as founder of an organization. For others it entails providing vision, great execution, leading through others, or simply being able to bring executive level experience to the table. Many Emerging Sages say they lead by being the public face and voice of their organization, and in building effective relationships with the community. Others lead by developing new and innovative programs, in making certain that the doors of city hall are kept open to all the people, in undertaking needed strategic planning, or in working to turn-around organizational culture. Says one Emerging Sage leader who recently was a city mayor of Grass Valley:
One of the things we did was to meet with all the city employee groups and really listen to what they had to say. Without any attempt to manage outcomes, we just sat down and had discussions with them. I believe we held six meetings in all. It was good to listen to their concerns, and to hear how they have helped people in our community in ways we don’t always get to learn about.
Another Emerging Sage leader expresses her leadership role this way:
My leadership in the areas of administration and strategic planning has helped us to begin evolving from an all-volunteer group of passionate individuals into an organization with paid staff, good bylaws, a better sense of our tangible goals, clearer agendas, and more work being done through committees. We need a strong functioning board, and I’m helping us move toward that.
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