When we want people to trust and believe in us, in order that they will follow us to make those energy savings, then a couple of things must be in place. We have to develop a coherent sense of direction. Where do we want to go with these energy savings? We have to recognize the risks and uncertainties that need to be overcome. What are the obstacles for the energy savings and what can we do about it?
We have to be ethical in our dealings with others and having a coherent set of values that we live by. This latter especially is what current “energy leaders” do not have. They say one thing and do the other. To save energy and be leaders of it we must be well motivated and able to adjust to the needs of the particular situation with proper insight. Again, most “leaders” trying to lead us with saving energy do not have a clue what needs to be done in most situations and the motivation is often of bad ground (Pardey 2007).
It is important that the energy leaders must have a personality that enables them to behave with a degree of emotional stability, neither overwhelming others nor shutting themselves away, show an interest in new ideas without being superficial, develop expertise without being too narrowly specialized, and ensure that tasks get done without being obsessional (Pardey 2007).
It is funny, but in my opinion the same things that improves a sound moral climate within organizations, like formal ethics policies and procedures, a core ideology , integrity, structural reinforcement and process focus, - these elements also would improve a sound climate to live in on earth (Conger & Riggio 2007).
With the right spirit it is easy to become a credible leader mentioned by Kouze and Posner in their book “The Leadership Challenge” from 2007. They write that to become a credible leader you have to comprehend fully the deeply held beliefs—values, principles, standards, ethics, and ideals—that drive you. You have to freely and honestly choose the principles you will use to guide your decisions and actions. Then you have to genuinely express yourself. You must authentically communicate your beliefs in ways that uniquely represent who you are (M. Kouzes & Z. Posner 2007).
Another important thing they add to this. Leaders aren’t just speaking for themselves when they talk about the values that should guide decisions and actions. When leaders passionately express a commitment to quality or innovation or service or some other core value, those leaders are not just saying, “I believe in this.” They’re making a commitment for an entire organization. They’re saying, “We all believe in this.” Therefore, energy leaders must not only be clear about their own personal values but also make sure that there’s agreement on a set of shared values among everyone they lead (M. Kouzes & Z. Posner 2007).
Conger, JA & Riggio, RE 2007, The Practice of Leadership, 1 st edn, John Wiley & Sons, San Fransisco.
M. Kouzes, J & Z. Posner, B 2007, The Leadership Challenge, Four edn, John Wiley & Sons, Inc, San Fransisco.
Pardey, D 2007, Introducing Leadership, 1 st edn, Butterworth-Heinemann, Burlington.