“In virtually every industry, there are at least a few leaders who know that organizational effectiveness does not require tamping down the creative instincts of the people around them and corralling employees and volunteers inside a box on the org chart. These are unconventional leaders who trust that effective leadership does not have to wear you down to the bone. Margaret Wheatley calls this model of leadership the new story. 'Leaders who live in the new story help us understand ourselves differently by the way they lead. They trust our humanness; they welcome the surprises we bring to them; they are curious about our differences; they delight in our inventiveness; they nurture us; they connect us.'

“These are Mosaic leaders. They are leaders who have learned — sometimes through hard-won lessons like Moses’s — that coercive control only breeds passivity, resistance, resentment, and abdication of responsibility. Mosaic leaders rely not solely on their own instincts but on the collective vision of the room. They piece together disparate refractions of that vision until the angle of its reflection is wide.

“Mosaic leaders attend to the moments when another voice, an alternative point of view or a fresh set of gifts, is called for. They make room for others to rise up and speak into those moments. They are generous in sharing their power that comes with their position, constantly seeking out partners in a common cause, trusting others to hold responsibility with them, holding lightly to their authority, their standing, and their influence. They measure the success of their leadership not exclusively by the accomplishment of a metrics-driven set of organizational goals but by the fullness of satisfaction and employment of gifts the work brings to the people engaged — as workers, as partners, even as those served.”