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Leadership and the development of leaders

The advancement of leadership and the development of leaders seem to concentrate more on training through investigation of theory or literature. According to the journal article, why is this ineffective? Evaluate the appropriateness of such a training focus. What other elements may be included to increase the self-knowledge and effectiveness of leadership? Give some examples.

Leadership development: teaching versus learning
Robert J Allio
Management Decision, Vol. 43 Iss: 7 pp. 1071-1077

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This article discusses the prevalence of leadership programs and exploring leadership development through the context of learning about leadership theory. According to the article, this approach is faulty because the individual is learning about a subject, but not actively practicing established, successful leadership actions or behaviors. Of course, reasearch has not provided consistent practices for leadership success. The individual, according to the article, returns to old ways of leading or approaching challenges shortly after attending the leadership training. Just sharing knowledge is not enough to produce long-term, positive change within the individual. I agree with this to some extent, but not the encompassing statement "leadership cannot be taught, leadership can be learned." This suggests that simply learning about leadership theory or leadership topics is unsuccessful, that the individual must have the opportunity to practice leadership. Practicing leadership through challenging job assignments and mentoring are very good suggestions. I think, combining leadership education/teaching with practical application is the key to developing leadership skill. Building self-knowledge can be beneficial, but it needs to be coupled with practical application.

Further, the development program needs to be keyed to work with the specific organization. Leadership, for me, is best explained by ...

Solution Summary

This solution offers a brief discussion of the attached article on leadership development.