Move over hero organizations are shifting to Eco-leadership

By Barry Shaw,2014-10-11 20:57
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Move over hero organizations are shifting to Eco-leadership


     Mithu Mukherjee

    PR Manager,



    Tel: +44 (0)207 3242223

    Mobile: +44 (0)7795 031 482


Los Angeles, London, New Delhi and Singapore (26 November 2007) What do Al

    Gore, Bill Gates, Toshiba and MacDonalds all have in common? According to a new SAGE publication out this month, they all show attributes of Eco-leadership: a more ethical and socially responsible form of leadership that is emerging to staddress the social and environmental issues faced by organizations in the 21


In Leadership, A Critical Text, Simon Western explores the four key leadership

    discourses that have emerged over the past century: the leader as Controller, Therapist, Messiah, and Eco-leader. Western claims this visionary hero leadership of the Messiah in the USA created corporate cultures that mimicked fundamentalist church cultures:

“They were dynamic and yet conformist and followers aligned behind

    visionary/prophetic leaders,” commented Western. “Follower belief in the leader and their vision created a form of culture control where employees would drive each other forward to achieve great things together, working long hours for „the

    good of the company; together they would prosper‟”.

    Western believes the Messiah leaders created cultures that shut down innovation and questioning; resulting in economic downturn and catastrophic events such as the collapse of Enron. This triggered the current shift to a more organic, distributed form of leadership that could make decisions close to the ground, be more adaptive and more ethical.

    Until recently a marginalized voice, the Eco-leader has become powerful since 2000, and more and more progressive business and political leaders begin to embrace this discourse. Eco-leadership understands the ecology of the workplace in relation to the wider world. It takes account of a holistic approach, realizing the interconnectivity of an organization, and builds networks and relationships with stakeholders.

    “Not only does the Eco-leader exist in the battle against climate change, but also recognizes the relationship between social responsibility and success,” said Western. “Consumers are no-longer willing to sit passively by while slave labour is used to manufacture goods. The costs of waste, fuel costs, heating costs, are all at unsustainable levels and have suddenly have brought Eco-leadership into the foreground, for business reasons as well as ethical reasons.”

    Already praised as one of the 'most promising forthcoming management books for 2007‟, Leadership A Critical Text offers insightful new ways to think about

    contemporary leadership.


    Leadership, A Critical Text, is published by SAGE in November 2007, available in paperback and hardback. See for more


    To arrange an interview with Simon Western, contact Mithu Mukherjee, PR Manager, SAGE:, Tel: +44 (0)207 3242223,

    Mobile: +44 (0)7795 031 482

To receive a review copy of this book, contact

    SAGE is a leading international publisher of journals, books, and electronic media for academic, educational, and professional markets. Since 1965, SAGE has helped inform and educate a global community of scholars, practitioners, researchers, and students spanning a wide range of subject areas including business, humanities, social sciences, and science, technology and medicine. An independent company, SAGE has principal offices in Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, and Singapore.

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