• Leadership

Gig Leadership – Taking Turns at the Tiller

Professor Bernd Vogel concludes Henley’s recent series of essential podcasts with an introduction to the concept of rotating leadership where many people spend an interim period at the helm


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Market volatility, technological disruption, and the multiple challenges faced by businesses today put huge pressure on the individual senior business leader—who may struggle to fulfil his or her role alone. At the same time the spread of more democratic, flat, management structures and the growing influence of the millennial generation in the workforce auger well for a more shared form of leadership—a trend that is already gaining ground.

Rather than one leader taking all decisions, the idea of ‘gig leadership’ is that, while retaining ultimate accountability, the ‘boss’ calls on talented colleagues from across the organization to take an interim leadership role, each stepping up to the helm then stepping aside for the next person.

In this final podcast in Henley Business School’s Leading Edge series, Professor Bernd Vogel, who coined the phrase ‘gig leadership’, talks to BBC reporter Thomas Mason about this new pattern of leadership that looks set to enhance the future workplace.

< Listen to the PODCAST here >

Professor Vogel predicts that in future we will democratise and liberate leadership development to enable gig leadership, changing the way we develop leaders by focusing on the whole human being and looking at how we develop the many.


Leading Edge is an insightful series of podcasts from Henley Business School. Thomas Mason, business journalist, is joined by some of Henley’s leading academics to explore and challenge their approaches and perceptions of what successful leadership should and could look like. 

Podcasts in the series, available here: www.henley.ac.uk/leading-edge and from the usual podcast providers, are:

  • My Boss is a Robot - help!
  • Diversity: it's not only skin-deep
  • Leadership Jazz: finding the right note when there is no plan
  • Board to Death: why companies fail
  • The Right Fit: keeping staff engaged at the workplace
  • Gig Leadership: taking turns at the tiller

Set in the heart of the Thames Valley and conveniently located for London, Henley is one of the oldest and most respected business schools in Europe. Number 20 in the world for the combined ranking of open and custom programmes (FT 2019), it is part of an elite group of business schools to be triple-accredited for the quality and capability of faculty and output.

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