Imperatives in Leading Institutions of Higher Learning: Focus B-School

Imperatives in Leading Institutions of Higher Learning: Focus B-School

Neeta Baporikar (Namibia University of Science and Technology, Windhoek, Namibia & University of Pune, Pune, India)
Copyright: © 2017 |Pages: 14
DOI: 10.4018/IJTEM.2017010104
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Abstract

Being an academic leader is a tough job and leading institutions of higher learning is definitely challenging in current scenario. It has become more challenging due to shrinking of budgets, rise in public scrutiny and expectations, commercialisation, massification. Responsibilities continue to grow for academic leaders. But leading a B-School which is also an institution of higher learning is more than a tough job. It is in fact a roller coaster ride. So what is that makes leading B-School so bewildering and what are the imperatives in leading a B-School is the focus of this paper? Adopting in depth literature review and contextual analysis of secondary published data, reports and deep observation as a part of B-School for nearly two decades the paper also proposes a holistic framework to lead a B-School to achieve its rightful place, become more responsible for ensuring sustainability and growth in the context in which it operates.
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Introduction

Effective leaders know that the ability to lead and manage organizational change is critical to survival. For a half-century, leadership experts have told us that employees respond negatively to authoritarian direction. Strong authoritarian leaders may get results, yet their results seldom last. When they leave the organization, their changes often leave with them. Douglas McGregor stated:

Management by direction and control - whether implemented with the hard, the soft, or the firm but fair approach - fails… because direction and control are useless methods of motivating people whose physiological and safety needs are reasonably satisfied and whose social, egoistic, and self- fulfilment needs are predominant (Bennis et al., 1966, p. 134).

So then what should be the style of an academic leader to lead institution of higher learning that to B-School in these turbulent times? Being an academic leader is a tough job and leading institutions of higher learning is definitely challenging but also perplexing in the current scenario (Baporikar, 2016a). It has gotten more challenging as budgets shrink, public scrutiny rises, and responsibilities continue to grow. But leading a B-School which is also an institution of higher learning is more than a tough job. It is in fact a roller coaster ride (Baporikar, 2009). So what is that makes leading B-School so bewildering and what are the imperatives in leading a B-School is the focus of this paper? Adopting a in depth literature review and contextual analysis of secondary published data, reports and deep observation as a part of B-School for nearly two decades the paper also proposes a holistic framework to lead a B-School to achieve its rightful place, become more responsible for ensuring sustainability and growth in the context in which it operates.

Literature Review

Leadership is defined as “exercising of command and direction in a skillful and responsible fashion” (Rosenberg, 1983). Leadership may also be seen as the action of leading a group of people or an organization, or the ability to do this. Leadership style is the way the manager behaves in his or her role. The behaviour differs from individual to individual, nature of work, and place of work. It has been established that some Asian Americans excelled in academics but failed in leadership (Eva, 2011). Maria (2014) is of opinion that strengthening of research may develop academic leaders. In Australia, it has been identified that Academic Boards handle the academic leadership in the areas of policy making and quality assurance (Tricia & Margaret, 2014). Jessica, et al., (2014:36) were of the opinion that, based on their research conducted “an extensive qualitative review of leadership theory across 10 top-tier academic publishing outlets that included The Leadership Quarterly, Administrative Science Quarterly, American Psychologist, Journal of Management, Academy of Management Journal, Academy of Management Review, Journal of Applied Psychology, Organizational Behaviour and Human Decision Processes, Organizational Science, and Personal Psychology”, that there was an increase in research in developing diverse leadership theories. There are various types of leadership which are classified based on the style and functions of the leader such as:

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