Leadership Without Easy Answers Andrea Parks

Chapter 1: Value in Leadership

Defining leadership can be challenging due to perception. Societal views are contradicting due to the fact that leadership is out looked to be value-free, or without personal influence. Leaders should be able to function in respect of the people's issues, not including their own. However, leadership is an emotionally and opinion based subject because society wants leaders who will be representative of their own morals and ideas.

This book expands on the idea that a leader should be a guide in helping a community face problems and finding resolutions within themselves. A leader shouldn't only execute their vision. The whole community is responsible for playing an active role.

  • There are 4 Theories of Leadership: Great Man/Trait, Situational, Contingency, and Transational
Collaborative Efforts

Leadership cannot be compressed into one individual; it is impossible for one person to be responsible for meeting everyone's needs without considering their own emotions. Instead, leadership should a collaborative effort where all people are required to resolve issues through communication and compromise.

Chapter 2: To Lead or Mislead?

To regain balance, one must restore itself to normal or adapt to new changes. Restoration can be an easy fix to a minor setback. However, adaptation is more complex and requires addressing the problem from deep within. Sometimes, adaptive work can require collaborating with people of different preferences, skills, or morals. Social systems call for adaptation through learning. Knowledge and understanding is powerful for moving towards reasoning and compromising in the best possible fashion.

Restoring Equilibrium

The reasons why adaptation might not work within a community are that people don't see a need, people are incapable, or the demand is too stressful and excessive.

Chapter 3: The Roots of Authority

Dominance can be observed in human behavior. Within a group, one person is given a sense of attention and authority from others around them. Power should always be offered, never demanded or taken.

Most of the time, authority is given unconsciously. We sometimes fail to realize that a person's authority over someone depends on the amount of respect established. This is called habitual deference. Often, we will automatically show someone gratitude or status simply because of who they are. However, the respect and praise they receive is all based upon how they are perceived by others.

One issue with giving authority figures a level or control is that they could possibly be unaccounted for. For example, the government or authoritative representative may have the power to enforce laws about playing in the leadership role. However, nobody is over this person to supervise how well and appropriately they are handling all situations.

Authoritative Figure


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