Many leaders of values-based organizations already possess the requisite passion for the core values of their respective organizations. The ability to have their organizations perform in a manner consistent with these values is critical to gain the authenticity necessary for their audiences in order to discern the value of what that particular organization offers. The inability to articulate this to all stakeholders — including the marketplace, investors, employees, and competitors — may increase the hazard of mortality for the organization.

One characteristic that human beings do not share with any other creature on earth is the ability to relate complex narratives. Narratives in leadership are synonymous with storytelling in organizations. Narratives have a much broader connotation. Narratives are an ancient art form and have the ability to create a connection between the narrator and the audience. If related well, it can create a sense of community, hone a common focus, and provide a stimulus for change. Most organizations need to address a common problem of implementing leadership tools resulting in the best outcomes for decisions. Poor leadership will inevitably increase the likelihood of organizational failure. They need to implement mechanisms that will increase positive outcomes.

This paper reviews examples of leadership under impossible odds. It will reveal the necessary foundational material to provide a solid background. Next, it will address the common elements of an effective narrative as well as the importance that authenticity plays in its reception. Lastly, the elements of narrative leadership and the power it can give to those leaders who learn how to use narratives effectively will be addressed. Examples will demonstrate how effective narratives used by leaders of values-based organizations can eliminate obstacles and help their organizations perform audaciously.

Included in

Business Commons