By Lobsang Lhamo
Students from the Spring 2010 "Integrative Leadership: From Theory to Practice" course, taught by Professors Jay Kiedrowski and Paul Vaaler, will post their reflections on integrative leadership throughout the course of the semester on the Time to Lead blog.
After taking the Integrative Leadership class and from the presentations of the guest speakers, I learnt that Integrative Leadership is not about a series of skills but it's more of a way of being in the world; it's about how you approach the world and how do you weave different elements that are important for the process of integration into all the different activities that you are doing.
The actions taken by Rotary International towards Polio eradication is truly one of the most amazing operations a NGO has taken in the recent history. Guided by their motto "Service above Self", Rotarians were able to bring the number of reported Polio cases down to 1,600 by the end of 2009 from a previous estimated of 350,000 worldwide in 1985. This is a great example of integrative leadership as integrative leadership fosters collective action (by Rotary International with WHO, UNICEF, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the governments of the countries involved, and wealthy individuals) across boundaries (physical boundaries of different countries, religious affiliations, different sub cultures) to advance the common good (eradication of Polio which was affecting an estimated of 350,000 people worldwide, especially in the underdeveloped and developing countries). They started in the United States and the initiative progressed to the rest of the world with over 1.2 million members in more than 200 countries and territories in more than 33,000 clubs worldwide. Through vigorous training, Rotary International expanded and not only did they expand, they also build leadership development in all these countries.
This is a clear example of so called "abundance in the midst of scarcity" a term used by Professor Ospina. She presented that when constituency can see the abundance they get trigger into mobilizing the energy. This approach will mobilized more individuals into any public problem and get more involvement.