Existential Leadership

Under the keyword »Existential Leadership« we draw in our work on essential foundations of existential thinking, above all on Daseinsanalysis and Existential Analysis. The practical application has already proven itself for more than half a century in psychotherapy, counselling, education, pastoral care, social work, coaching, management, and in other fields of work. The dimensions and subjects described here impressively show how important it is to consider the basic references and the basic structure of being a person also in the world of companies and organisations.

The human being foremost refers in his existence to his »being in the world«, like Martin Heidegger has put it. This kind of being may be unfold and differentiated – just for the sake of grasping some practical insights – to his Umwelt (that is the physical dimension of human existence), to the Mitwelt (that is the social dimension), his Eigenwelt (that is the psychological dimension) and the Überwelt (in the sense of a spiritual /​ transcendent dimension).

In this view Man shows in his existence (consciously and unconsciously) fundamental strivings (fundamental motivations) for security in a sense of clarity in a fundamentally unsecure world; for value experience, which is realized in being with and amongst others; self‐​being which calls for identity; and for meaningful action in a world that appears to be first of all meaningless. These efforts have a direct impact also on the actions or omissions of all employees within organizations simply since organizations are merely part of the world where to be in. The person in managerial responsibility faces nothing less than the challenge of leading themselves and others in such a way that taking these fundamental motivations into account in day‐​to‐​day organization so work may lead to successful and good cooperations. This requires an insight into and a deep understanding of the very conditions of Man being in the world.

The management task stands in the field of tension between the given conditions and necessities and (voluntary) cooperation. Some of the questions that every person in charge must deal with: What are the roles of effective leadership? In view of the leadership situation, what must be considered, especially in value‐​oriented organizations? What can and must leadership achieve so that the common goals, e.g., of a team can also be achieved? The willingness of the individual to cooperate increases, among other things, to the extent that an organizational and personal framework is set by the management in which the self‐​development and autonomy, but also the (personal) responsibility of the employees is promoted and strengthened.