Towards responsible leadership in the financial planning industry in South Africa

Saayman, Johannes Petrus (2016-12)

Thesis (MA)--Stellenbosch University, 2016.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The financial services industry in South Africa has, for some time now, seen sweeping changes take place. Many of these changes have been driven by the Legislatures. Similarly, financial products have undergone many changes, driven by both client-needs and technological advances. These changes have also influenced how businesses in financial services are managed and led. While leaders practice numerous leadership styles, this study will pay particular attention to contrasting leadership styles and comment on the ethical content of such styles, followed by a discussion on good leadership and responsible leadership. Two dimensions to responsible leadership are explored: the relational and the ethical. Within the relational dimension, this thesis will focus on the stakeholder-approach and the virtuous approach will enjoy focus within the ethical dimension. Weaving a web of inclusion among stakeholders is considered an essential ability for a responsible leader to have. Responsible leaders face many challenges. It is the responsible leader’s ability to build relationships that will allow the responsible leader to bring various stakeholders together and build enduring relationships with such stakeholders. The virtuous approach will be discussed from a virtue-ethics perspective and, as such, it is important to differentiate between values and virtues. The virtuous approach provides the responsible leader with a fixed point from which to make decisions. The cardinal virtues are discussed and used as the foundation to synergise the two approaches, i.e. the relational and virtuous approach. The two approaches are complementary and form the basis for moving the financial planning industry towards becoming a responsible industry. Heading towards responsible leadership in the financial planning industry in South Africa will not come without its own unique challenges. Understanding why leaders fail is important to ensure that safeguards can be put into place to prevent leadership failures. The challenges responsible leaders will face in the future will come from external as well as internal sources. However, the economic advantages and the impact responsible leaders can have on their organisations and society will far exceed any negative aspects brought about by the various challenges that responsible leaders face. It is envisaged that responsible leaders in the financial planning industry can have a marked impact on other leaders, be they business or societal.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die Suid Afrikaanse finansiële dienste industrie, het oor die afgelope paar jare groot veranderinge beleef. Die veranderinge is onder andere deur wetlike aspekte beïnvloed. So ook, is finansiële produkte aangepas, om te voldoen aan kliënte behoeftes en tegnologiese ontwikkeling. Hierdie veranderinge het 'n direkte impak op die bestuur en leiding van besighede in die finansiële dienste industrie. Alhoewel leiers gebruik maak van verskeie leierskap style, fokus hierdie studie op kontrasterende leierskap style as ook op die etiese inhoud van genoemde style. Gevolg deur 'n bespreking oor goeie leierskap en verantwoordelike leierskap. Twee dimensies van verantwoordelike leierskap word ondersoek: die etiese en relasionele. Die relasionele dimensie omvat die belanghebbende-benadering en die etiese dimensie sal deur die deugsaamheid benadering uitgelig word. Die samestelling van 'n inklusiewe platvorm wat alle belanghebbendes is 'n noodsaaklike eienskap van 'n verantwoordelike leier. Die verantwoordelike leier beleef verskeie uitdagings. Die verantwoordelike leier se vermoë om suksesvolle verhoudings te kweek, sal bepaal of die verantwoordelike leier die verskeie belanghebbendes bymekaar kan bring as ook die suksesvolle ontwikkeling van blywende verhoudings met die betrokke belanghebbendes. Die deugsame benadering sal vanaf 'n deugde-etiek perspektief bespreek word, dus is dit belangrik om te onderskei tussen waardes en deugde. Die deugsame benadering bied die verantwoordelike leier met 'n vaste punt vanwaar besluite geneem kan word. Die kardinale deugde word bespreek en word gebruik as die grondslag om die twee benaderings te harmoniseer, met ander woorde die relasionele en deugsame benadering. Die twee benaderings is aanvullend en vorm dus die basis vir die manier waarop die finansiële beplanning bedryf kan beweeg in die rigting om as 'n verantwoordelike bedryf beskou te word. Die skyf na verantwoordelike leierskap in die finansiële beplanning bedryf in Suid-Afrika sal nie teweeg gebring kan word sonder unieke uitdagings nie. Om te verstaan hoekom leiers faal is dit belangrik om te verseker dat veiligheidsmaatreëls in plek gestel kan word om leierskap mislukkings te voorkom. Die uitdagings wat verantwoordelike leiers in die gesig staar sal vanaf beide eksterne en interne bronne ontstaan. Die ekonomiese voordele en die impak wat verantwoordelike leiers kan hê op hul organisasies en die gemeenskap as ‘n geheel, sal enige negatiewe aspekte wat deur die verskillende uitdagind gebied word oorskry. Daar word beoog dat verantwoordelike leiers in die finansiële beplanning bedryf 'n merkbare invloed op ander leiers kan hê, of dit nou in besigheid of die samelewing is.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/100349
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