There are many ways to lead, take responsibility and guide destinies. An archetype is an attempt to categorise the different expressive forms of an activity in a single image that is (subconsciously) passed down as an idea from generation to generation. It is a fusion of patterns, functionalities and structures into a single idea or mode of thought.
The word ‘archetype’ comes from the Greek and means ‘original form’. This type of ‘first image’ results from the merging of a large number of similar or related patterns into a single image, and this since the dawn of humanity. In relation to the activity of leadership, the leadership archetype is used to describe a managerial style that can be divided, for example, into dominant, authoritarian and active; defensive, balance-oriented and democratic; and creative, collective and motivating. The distinction between Good and Evil, which corresponds to an ancient original image, can also be transferred to leadership practices. Behavioural power has a role to play here. If leadership power is used positively and encouragingly, managerial behaviour moves to the ‘Good’ corner. If leadership practices tend towards exploitation, abuse, greed and the selfish use of power for one’s own ends regardless of the consequences, then from an archetype viewpoint the managerial style can be described as ‘Evil’ and therefore negative.
Leadership behaviour is also often matched with male and female archetypes, the male and female identity being subdivided into individual archetypal images. Three examples of a male archetype would be the Warrior, Scholar and King. The Mother, the Sorceress, the Wise Old Woman would be examples of female archetypes. Role concepts that can be applied to one’s own managerial activities can be derived from prehistoric leadership styles as well as leadership archetypes. These role concepts are helpful in the work with managers as they illustrate the respective manager’s leadership style and show the roles (the images, such as the powerful one, the tyrant, the affectionate one, the benevolent, the wise one, etc.) that are hidden behind that leadership style. This is why INSTITUT SOMMERINSTITUT SOMMER is not only the name of our company, but also the expression of the approach we take towards the requests we receive. Read more here.... Read more enjoys working with role concepts in its work with managers, in team building sessions, in the talent factory and in team events.