Anne Ladky: An Energy Approach to Leadership

by: Jane Dutton

Publication Date: August 21, 2009
Length: 14 pages
Product ID#: 1-428-851

Core Disciplines: Leadership/Organizational Behavior

Partner Collection:

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Teaching Note

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Leaders of political advocacy organizations are faced with the challenge of motivating their employees past frequent obstacles, shortcomings, and failures. Anne Ladky, the Executive Director of a non-profit political advocacy organization called Women Employed, developed a leadership style to help her employees tackle this demanding line of work. Her leadership approach attends to the vital role human energy plays in her organization and emphasizes the importance of focusing on opportunities. This case describes how Anne’s leadership cultivated an opportunity-driven organizational culture that ultimately helped Women Employed overcome bureaucratic resistance against their initiatives to improve education and job training for low-income women.

Teaching Objectives

After reading and discussing the material, students should:

  • Illustrate how leaders can attend to, create, and replenish positive energy in organizations, as well as avoid and release negative energy.
  • Inspire thought about how, why, and when being opportunity-driven can energize individuals and organizations.
  • Explore the benefits and challenges of energy and opportunity-driven leadership.