Home Concepts Concepts of Leadership The Leadership Spectrum: I. Three Primary Perspectives and Practices

The Leadership Spectrum: I. Three Primary Perspectives and Practices

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When a relationship isn’t working well, the person with a Golden Yellow orientation will want to move away from other people –especially the person with whom they are experiencing difficulties. This is the third option that is identified by Karen Horney. Just as the sun burns bright at a long distance from our earth, the Golden Yellow leader (or any other person with a Golden Yellow orientation) will want somehow to move out far enough to be safe and perhaps see things more clearly or more “objectively.” The primary interpersonal need is for management of Inclusion: who do I want to be with and who do I want to avoid? What if they invite me to join them—do I want to accept their invitation? What if they don’t want to include me—will I feel hurt or relieved? It is important to note that the need for Inclusion often drops off precipitously when we are going through a divorce or feel betrayed in a business relationship. If the level of interpersonal trust declines than a Golden Yellow perspective often becomes more attractive – at least for a short period of time (while we cocoon).

The inclination toward distancing and objectivity is represented as well in the Golden Yellow preference for the thinking function (MBTI) and for readily understood preference for Introversion (even with Golden Yellow preferences that are not extreme).  The Golden Yellow orientation is also aligned with the three final Enneagram types: 4, 5 and 9. The fifth enneagram type aligns most easily with Golden Yellow. This type is about finding a safe place away from the hubbub of daily life. It is about being a bit of a hermit. By contrast, the Enneagram 9 is about being in the midst of the hub-bub—but finding a thoughtful and rational compromise among disparate and often competing perspectives. The Enneagram 9 is a peacemaker and is probably the most constructive way in which Golden Yellow leadership can be engaged.

With Type 4 we ourselves confronted with an important irony. To the extent that Enneagram 4 is aligned with the Golden Yellow orientation then we find a contradiction in the desire of those with the Golden Yellow orientation to advocate rationality and reality, while choosing to focus on their own deep thoughts and feelings. While they might distrust the inner thoughts and feelings of other people (as being irrational or biased), they are likely to trust their own inner life and ironically rely on this inner life when making “rational” judgements about the world.

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