Leadership Lessons: Drawing Inspiration from Our Kings

The latest report from the Royal Civil Service Commission (RCSC) sheds light on various aspects of the civil service, one of which is leadership. It emphasizes the imperative to foster transformational leadership characterized by steadfast commitment, resilience, and a holistic approach that fosters employee engagement across all tiers. Furthermore, the RCSC underscores that transformational leadership must emanate from within, with leaders exemplifying the change they aspire to see and inspiring others through their actions to strive towards the envisioned goals.

Although the RCSC does not explicitly state that some leaders fall short of this expectation, the implication suggests that while some leaders may espouse transformational leadership principles in theory, their actions may not always align with their words. And this is immensely disheartening for Bhutanese as we are blessed with exemplary role models in the form of our Kings, who embody the pinnacle of leadership qualities and whose actions serve as guiding beacons for us all. While we cannot display leadership traits like our Kings, we can certainly strive to emulate their leadership virtues. We need not delve into leadership literature or podcasts; rather, we can observe the tangible actions and exemplary conduct of our Kings, who have led and continue to lead by example in different ways.

The success of organizations hinges greatly on the quality of their leaders. When leadership is lacking, organizations are at risk of failure. This poor leadership may manifest in various ways, such as an inability to inspire, guide, or effectively perform other fundamental leadership functions. Leaders play a pivotal role in shaping the culture, morale, and overall effectiveness of an organization. Thus, when leadership falls short, it can erode trust, diminish motivation, and ultimately drive talented individuals to seek opportunities elsewhere. It is plausible that some civil servants decided to resign after encountering poor leadership within their respective institutions.

Effective leadership is essential for fostering a positive and productive work environment conducive to achieving organizational goals. This entails living by example and actively demonstrating the values and behaviors required to achieve the desired state. By doing so, leaders can empower their teams to adopt a similar mindset, fostering a culture of continuous improvement and innovation within the organization. This emphasis on leading by example serves as a cornerstone for effective leadership and is crucial for driving meaningful and lasting change.

Not long ago, we witnessed His Majesty the King traversing the nationโ€™s expanse, braving scorching sun and torrential rains, personally overseeing measures to safeguard Bhutanese lives and livelihoods from the ravages of Covid-19. This is but one exemplary act epitomizing leading by example. Almost every citizen, especially our leaders in various agencies, reveres the portraits of His Majesty, who selflessly served the nation amidst perilous times, leading from the front lines and risking his own safety.

Yet, possessing these cherished portraits serves little purpose if we fail to grasp the profound messages they convey or draw inspiration to emulate the noble steps.