Think Fast Service and Operations Leadership

Leadership 2.0

I’m not sure when we started putting revisions on everything.  Web 2.0 is certainly one of the main culprits, and now every time someone tries to indicate that something is in a new generation they use the “2.0” extension.  I saw an article on “Web 3.0” this week as well, and just when I was starting to understand the basics of 2.0.  I’m also working on a Bryan 2.0, revision 1.0 was a little buggy.


business 2.0

So it naturally follows that an industry like management consulting, noted power users of catch phrases and shorthand, will use a term like “Leadership 2.0” to describe a trend in management and leadership methods.  Several books and blog postings this week indicated this change in direction.  The concepts seem to draw from one of my favorite authors, Daniel H. Pink, and his fascinating book “A Whole New Mind” from a few years ago.  Daniel summarizes the characteristics into 6 “senses:”

  • Design
  • Story
  • Symphony
  • Empathy
  • Play
  • Meaning

There was also a fleeting re-tweet I caught from my friend Jason Averbook, @jasonaverbook on Twitter, “RT @simonlauzier: Knowledge Infusion presentation: leadership is changing and new leader competency are needed.”  I haven’t seen the details yet but I assume that concern is right along the same lines.

Another clear, concise listing was in a blog last week entitled Leadership 2.0 by Michael Hyatt.  Michael boiled it down nicely into the following 7 attributes:

  • embraces change
  • demonstrates transparency
  • celebrates dialogue
  • employs collaboration
  • practices sharing
  • welcomes engagement
  • builds community

The words are different, but the tone is almost identical.

So is “Leadership 2.o” the end of command and control, hierarchical, information hoarding management?  Are you a 2.0 leader?  How about your boss?  I would imagine there are a few bosses that are still working out issues in rev 1.0.



May 29, 2009 - Posted by | Leadership


  1. There is a cool conversation going on this in the LinkedIn Group forum “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team”


    Comment by Bryan Schueler | June 2, 2009 | Reply

  2. Bryan,
    As someone who is reinventing himself, I really enjoyed this post. I am now checking out Daniel Pink’s work and following @jasonaverbook on Twitter. You are helping me to expand my universe.

    Comment by Tom Aplomb | June 4, 2009 | Reply

  3. Great post. And I have to agree that there’s an irony in using the lexicon of software versions (2.0) and applying it to business, though in fairness the internet is really what got us to 2.0 (which I guess is progress in getting away from Roman numerals for things like World War II).

    In the discussion of what it takes to be a successful leader today, there out to be some comparative reflection on what is different in the 2.0 world. For some organizations it’s not very different (lumber yards, e.g.), and others couldn’t exist without it (Netflix, ING DIRECT, etc.). I would assert that there are two very basic things in the 2.0 world:
    1) Physical location used to be highly relevant to many organizations and now it is not, which means switching costs are very low, and brand loyalty is getting put to the test in many ways.
    2) Organizations were defined by their “four walls” and discussions about optimization were almost entirely inward looking discussions. Today, you have to almost turn 180 degrees around and look outward for the ways to address your problems and opportunities, and that’s at the heart of one of how leaders need to change – they now need to be outward facing diplomats to interact with the outside, and then connect them to their “inside.”

    So understand what is different in your 2.0 compared to your 1.0 before rethinking leadership, that’s my $.02


    Comment by Ric Merrifield | June 20, 2009 | Reply

    • Thank you for the comments Ric, and you make excellent points. I wonder if one of the many factors that is contributing to the “2.0” world is the general breakdown of traditional hierarchical structures in many new economy industries. In addition to what you state here, what is different in your 2.0 may be internal culture as well as physical proximity and external networking.

      I would also suggest that if you really want to rethink (love your book, by the way!) how you’re running your lumber yard it is better facilitated and executed in a 2.0 culture. That can be a way to transform a mundane process like grocery shopping into an experience like Stew Leonard’s.

      Comment by Bryan Schueler | June 22, 2009 | Reply

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