How do I deal with conflicting demands on leadership? (Part 1) 

Illustration springende Person auf Papierfliegern
November 15, 2022 | Leadership and Organizational Development, Leadership und Organisationsentwicklung

The short answer is that there can be no general answer to this question as it is necessary to balance interests in order to resolve conflicting requirements. For situations that are not so extreme, this consideration depends on too many parameters and no general formula can be applied to all situations. There is no static pattern for leadership behavior – which is what makes successful leadership so difficult to learn. It is much more important to face contradictions and accept them, otherwise any attempt to resolve them is doomed to fail.

Leadership is different at each level of the hierarchy 

When talking about leadership, it is important to ask for which level in the company. Because leadership is not the same at every level. Whereas managers at the top stand for trust in success, middle managers stand for trust in relationships. At the grassroots level, it is essential to be confident in the ability to implement actions.

Leadership creates platforms for sorting differences in meaning  

In any change process, managers gain appeal as facilitators. Regularly organized platforms to clarify differences in meaning reduce resistance. Particularly in the case of company-wide change initiatives, a “sounding board” is useful to promote a mutual understanding at an early stage. Shared knowledge then becomes collective consciousness. But even in ordinary life, managers recognize when they are “losing” employees and might need to clarify misunderstandings.

Leadership aligns expectations, interests, and needs in the system 

All employees are integrated into one (corporate) system. The interests of the company and its members may be conflicting. Balancing these interests requires a representative – you guessed it: the manager.

Leadership_group of aviator on blue background

There is no static pattern for leadership behavior – which is what makes successful leadership so difficult to learn.

Frank Krause
Senior Partner, STAUFEN.AG


Frank Krause



Texts are never created when you’re alone. Your own thoughts are also always the result of external stimulation.

The following authors serve to inspire me and accompany me on my path to insight: Tom DeMarco, Peter Drucker, Ulrike Herrmann, Gerald Hüther, Daniel T. Jones, Stefan Kühl, Rupert Lay, Jeffrey K. Liker, Michael Löhner, Fredmund Malik, Hans A. Pestalozzi, Richard D. Precht, Marshall B. Rosenberg, Mike Rother, Friedemann Schulz von Thun, Reinhard Sprenger, Frederic Vester, Harald Welzer, and James P. Womack.

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