Volume 13, Issue 3 – Summer 2014

In this application brief the author shares a case study assignment used in Leadership in Complex Organizations classes to promote creativity in problem solving. Ph.D. students were sorted into two teams trained to use creative writing techniques to encode theory into their own cases. A sense of competition emerged. Later, teams swapped cases for analysis and decoding. The approach became known as “reverse case study.” Summative course evaluations revealed four important instructional themes: (1) students were able to apply and learn leadership and organizational theories, (2) students were able to build rapport and create bonds with fellow students, (3) students explored creativity, and (4) students explored the perspective of “the other.”

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Summer Is Here!

Boy is it ever! I remember sitting here just a few short months ago, in the throes of winter, talking with colleagues and friends about how badly we wished summer would get here because we all had a bad case of the winter doldrums. How time does indeed fly!

For me, summer is all about watching baseball, grilling out, and most importantly, time with friends and family in the sunshine doing some of the things we love to do like gardening. I think of each of those as integral parts of what makes up my summertime. Without one of those, I’d feel like my summer was missing something.  I feel the same way about our community of leadership educators…we have teachers both formal and non-formal, practitioners at all levels, consultants, and members of industry. Without even one of those, we would be missing something here. Each of those parts serves to strengthen and build our community. We’re all better because of the others.

When it comes to JOLE, the same is true. Each piece of the puzzle; research, theory, application and idea serves to build and shape our community. Each brings something unique and essential to our collective knowledge. Together they form an important tapestry that without one, the others would not be as beautiful or as vibrant.

I hope that as you are enjoying your summer, you will think about contributing to our community of leadership education. Whether that means joining or renewing your membership in the Association of Leadership Educators, or sending in a unique teaching idea or application to JOLE, or starting a conversation about a new idea or program with a colleague that will enhance your own practice, I hope you know how important YOU are to our leadership education community. Without you, our tapestry would also not be as beautiful or as vibrant. 

The purpose of this study was to measure the relationship between followers’ perceptions of the servant leadership of their immediate supervisor and followers’ sense of empowerment in the context of small businesses. A quantitative survey was completed by 116 employees of small businesses, including measures of supervisors’ servant leadership behaviors and followers’ self perceived empowerment. Followers’ perceptions of being empowered were found to correlate positively with their ratings of the servant leadership behaviors of immediate supervisors. The findings support the researchers’ assertions that followers’ perceptions of being empowered will increase as supervisors’ servant leadership behaviors increase.

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This study of 165 undergraduate students enrolled in an introductory leadership theory course explores the degree to which students report changes in these three areas of leadership from the beginning to the end of the course. First, students report significant gains in leadership self-efficacy, transformational and transactional leadership skill, and each measured form of motivation to lead at the conclusion of the course. Second, a closer examination shows that student learning is not across-the-board but, rather, differentiated. Students experience significantly different outcomes depending on their levels of self-efficacy and motivation to lead when they enter the course. 

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This paper proposes a model for youth leadership education based on adolescent development and leadership research in an effort to provide practitioners with a practical blueprint to aid their creation and implementation of high school leadership programs. By focusing on student leader development areas which school level educators can affect, domains not generally addressed as required high school graduate competency outcomes, and leadership development components particularly applicable to adolescence, this proposed model can both advance the literature and help practitioners.

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Leadership development goal statements of 92 undergraduate students enrolled in a multi-year self-directed leadership development program were analyzed using content and thematic analyses to investigate patterns of similarities and differences across gender and race. This qualitative analysis utilized a theoretical framework that approached leadership typed traits, skills, or behaviors (Northouse, 2009). Significant differences emerged by gender; women were more interested in developing leadership-oriented traits while men displayed more interest in developing specific skills. No differences emerged across racial groups.

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Followership has been recognized as an essential component of leadership studies as evidenced by growth of research within this area. To keep pace with the growth of this research, it is time to bring followership into the leadership classroom. This paper proposes a case-based exercise with two main learning objectives: (1) to help students broaden their perceptions about followership, and (2) to promote followership behaviors that actively contribute to organizations. This exercise includes large group discussion, peer coaching, and individual work to facilitate these endeavors. The paper concludes with suggested methods for assessment that include both self- and peer ratings, as well as open-ended reflection.

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This article examines the impact of three leadership styles as a predictor of job satisfaction in a state university system. The Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire was used to identify the leadership style of an administrator as perceived by faculty members. Spector’s Job Satisfaction Survey was used to assess a faculty member’s level of job satisfaction. The population consisted of 567 full-time faculty members, and 104 participants completed the survey. The results revealed that (a) faculty members who identified transformational leadership as dominant had increased job satisfaction, (b) faculty members who identified transactional leadership as dominant had increased job satisfaction, and (c) faculty members who identified passive/avoidant leadership as dominant had decreased job satisfaction..

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All too often leadership programs are developed in relative isolation; that is, they tend to be either academic or practitioner in nature. Arguably, much more effective leadership programs are possible through collaboration between academics and practitioners. This application brief describes one such successful collaboration to develop an inspirational leadership workshop based upon the leadership experiences of retired four-star U.S. Army General Tommy Franks. The result is an award winning leadership workshop designed for both students and professionals.

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The purpose of this study is to explain how the quality of teacher-student relationships and the gap of cognitive styles between teachers and students impact student achievement. The population for the study was comprised of 11 career and technical education (CTE) teachers and 210 CTE students, representing six disciplines within CTE. The study occurred in a suburban high school in western North Carolina. Leader-member Exchange (LMX) theory and Adaption innovation theory guided the research. Dyadic intensity between teachers and students predicts the quality of teacher-student relationships from both the teacher’s perspective and the student’s perspective. The quality of teacher-student relationships from the teacher’s perspective predicts the quality of teacher-student relationships student’s perspective. 

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This application brief describes the exploratory assessment of a mentoring program between current students and alumni of a leadership studies minor program. We connect leadership education research and practice in two ways: first, we describe a process of qualitative program evaluation to inform program best practices and improvement. In doing so, we also highlight the value of an alumni mentoring program as a strategic component of leadership education. Our findings demonstrate the mentoring program supported students’ leadership development in the areas of career transition, personal growth, and application to “real-life.” Recommendations are offered for creating formal and informal mentoring opportunities.

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