Effective Leadership Strategy in Islamic Organizations. Presented by: Abdulwahab Sikirullah. Organised By: Independent Muslim United Of Nigeria- IMUN. Preamble. Planning without implementation is useless. In some Islamic organisations, there is no defined concept of long-term planning.
Independent Muslim United Of Nigeria- IMUN
A great leader inspires people to go places, doing things they would have thought of on their own. A leader brings out the best in his followers which normally result to a major growth and success. Note:- A leader is not great because of his/her power, but because he/she is able to empower others and “success without a successor is failure.
Power is given to the leader to evaluate, correct, and train subordinates when productivity is not up to the desired level, and reward effectiveness when expected outcome is reached.
The transformational dimension is very much a part of the Islamic paradigm of leadership, which stresses the reciprocal enrichment of the leaders and the followers. In fact, Islam demands that you, as a leader, pay attention to your followers’ needs. In a hadith (no. 2942) reported in Sunan Abu Dawud by Abu Maryam al-Azdi, the Prophet (s) said:
If Allah puts anyone in the position of authority over the Muslims’ affairs and he secludes himself (from them), not fulfilling their needs, wants, and poverty, Allah will keep Himself away from him, not fulfilling his need, want, and poverty.
In fact, your followers are responsible for following your directives as long as you behave Islamically, and for disobeying you when you do not.
The Prophet (s) said: “Obedience (to somebody) is required when he enjoins what is good.” Narrated by Ali (r).
You must have an honest understanding of who you are, what you know, and what you can do. Also, note that it is the followers, not the leader or someone else who determines if the leader is successful. If they do not trust or lack confidence in their leader, then they will be uninspired. To be successful you have to convince your followers, not yourself or your superiors, that you are worthy of being followed.
Different people require different styles of leadership. For example, a new hire requires more supervision than an experienced employee. A person who lacks motivation requires a different approach than one with a high degree of motivation. You must know your people! The fundamental starting point is having a good understanding of human nature, such as needs, emotions, and motivation. You must come to know your employees' be, know, and do attributes.
You lead through two-way communication. Much of it is nonverbal. For instance, when you “set the example,” that communicates to your people that you would not ask them to perform anything that you would not be willing to do. What and how you communicate either builds or harms the relationship between you and your employees.
All situations are different. What you do in one situation will not always work in another. You must use your judgment to decide the best course of action and the leadership style needed for each situation. For example, you may need to confront an employee for inappropriate behavior, but if the confrontation is too late or too early, too harsh or too weak, then the results may prove ineffective.
Critical Point: ******** Islamic paradigm of leadership, which stresses the reciprocal enrichment of the leaders and the followers. In fact, Islam demands that you, as a leader, pay attention to your followers’ needs. In a hadith (no. 2942) reported in Sunan Abu Dawud by Abu Maryam al-Azdi, the Prophet (s) said:
As a Muslim leader, you need to have the right intention (niyyah). Are you truly leading this organization, or just holding on desperately to a leadership position because you are the founder? If you are the former, focus on helping those around you succeed without being concerned about your own personal gain or prestige. If you are the latter, step down; there are so many other opportunities to do good work for the cause of Allah. You will learn how good your followers are only when you give them the freedom to succeed and become a servant-leader.
Your task is not done after developing a shared vision and empowering others, for now you must lead by modelling the way. First, be clear about your beliefs. By practicing what you preach, clarify to your followers what core values and behaviour should be emulated.
Allah describes our beloved Prophet as a timeless, virtuous model for all:
And you stand an exalted standard of character. (Qur’an, 68:4)
Succeeding in Allah’s Path is difficult, and Muslims will be continuously tested. Sometimes, brothers and sisters may become discouraged because a strategic plan may look too hard or is taking too long to implement.
The following admonition from Prophet Ya’qub (a) illustrates this aspect of Islamic leadership:
O my sons! Go and inquire about Joseph and his brother, and never give up hope of Allah’s Soothing Mercy. Truly, no one despairs of Allah’s Soothing Mercy except those who have no faith. [Qur’an, 12:87]
So lose not heart or fall into despair, for you must gain mastery if you are true in faith. [Qur’an, 3:139]
In the “law of effect”: Behaviour that is rewarded will be repeated; behaviour that is not rewarded will not be.
General Leadership Principle:-
Do not be in a leaderless group; appoint a leader!
When three men travel together, they should make one of them their leader. -Abu Dawud, on the Authority of Abu Sa’id ‘Al-Khudri
Each one of your is shepherd. And each one of you will be asked about y
our flock......... (Bukhari and Muslim, on the Authority of ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar)
(When a man tells you something in confidence, you must not betray his trust.: Abu Dawud, on the Authority of Jabir ibn ‘Abdullah.)
(Abusing a Muslim is Fusuq (an evil doing) and killing him is Kufr (disbelief).- Bukhari)
Note: Miserliness, cowardice and greed deprive man of his trust in God. The worst of counselors is he who has served as a counsellor to unjust rulers and shared their crimes.