Equifinality and the Key Role it Plays in Understanding the Future of Leadership
Keywords:Equifinality, Pathways, Leadership, CIP, Diversity
As organizations continue to increase in diversity across a range of demographic, value-based, and attitudinal variables, there can be a natural tension around differing styles and approaches to leading. We offer that these differences need not necessarily serve as a source of conflict if organizations are able to embrace the principle of equifinality. Equifinality, applied to leadership, represents the notion that there is more than one pathway to leading successfully. By focusing on equifinality as a core principle, stylistic differences can add to the fabric of organizational life rather than being a source of tension in it. We offer an example of an equifinality based approach to leading, the charismatic, ideological, and pragmatic (CIP) model to illustrate equifinality successfully applied as a core principle. We conclude by offering practical guidance on how to effectively apply an equifinality approach to leadership in organizations.
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