The realm of leadership is multifaceted and can be understood from various perspectives, such as products, processes, or people.
However, among these, the dimension of people is undeniably the most intricate and complex one. As a leader, it is imperative to recognize that people are not just a mere part of your business but they are, in fact, the essence of your business. In other words, they are the very reason for your leadership.
One can analyze individuals either on an individual level or in the context of relationships and social networks. Today, we shall delve into the realm of human development and examine the profound insights of one of the greatest thinkers of our times, Erik Erikson.
Erikson’s theories on human development bring to light the eight stages or the “eight ages of man,” delineating the various phases that we go through in our lifetime, from the beginning of our lives till the end. He named eight stages that we pass through if we have a fruitful and long life, and let’s assume that we live till the age of eighty.
The initial stage of human development is infancy, encompassing the period from birth to one-and-a-half years old. The second stage, which Erikson refers to as early childhood, stretches from one-and-a-half to three years. The third stage, known as preschool, spans from three to six years old, followed by the school stage, which lasts from six to twelve years old.
Adolescence is the stage that encompasses the period from 12 to 20 years old. Young adulthood, the sixth stage, is a phase that extends until the age of 40. The seventh stage, which we enter at the age of 40, is adulthood, which lasts until 60.
And finally, the last stage, if we have lived a long and fruitful life, is the stage of maturity that lasts from 60 until death. By exploring these stages of human development, we can gain a deeper understanding of ourselves and those around us, enabling us to become more effective leaders in our personal and professional lives.
So, as a question to ponder, in what stage of human development are you?