Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Desperate Measures

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It really feels as though this election is sliding into farce. Every party is so frantic for an edge that with just over one week to go they are pulling out all the stops.

All the stops??

All that seems to be happening is the dire warnings are getting heavier and the ‘pledges’ are coming even more fast and furious.

Of course, for the parties, a lot is at stake: how will the country be governed and by whom?  So desperate measures do seem to be the order of the day.

The party manifestoes have been published and yet more and more promises get thrown at us every day.

It rather reminds me of frustrated parents who ratchet up the threats, blackmail, cajoling, imploring and arguing in order to get their recalcitrant kids to behave. I can just about hear each one of our ‘leaders’ saying in a deeply stern voice, “If you don’t go to the polls and vote for my party on 7th May, I’m taking away your phone and you’re grounded for a week.”

It does seem as though whatever leadership qualities any of them might possess (and I have my doubts) have been tossed out the window in favour of a hectoring, blaming, finger-pointing, almost whining communication style.

I keep saying ‘they’re all at’ because they are!  No one has actually taken the bull by the horns and shown genuine leadership skills by distancing themselves from the rabble-rousing, emotive electioneering and simply presenting what they intend to achieve, how they intend to achieve it and what it might actually look like if they were able to put their manifesto into practise.

Great leadership skills aren’t about dissing the opposition, forecasting disaster if another party wins or treating the electorate as infants. People with great leadership skills build trust, treat people as adults, behave as adults themselves and avoid alarmist and exaggerated predictions.

It is rather depressing that even if you put the policies to one side, you’re still left with ‘leaders’ who aren’t leading; instead they’re pleading.

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By Jo Ellen Grzyb, Director, Impact Factory

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