“Should I stand back, or should I lead?” Developing intentional communal cultures of emergent and distributed forms of leadership in educational settings
Citation:Youngs, H. (2008). “Should I stand back, or should I lead?” Developing intentional communal cultures of emergent and distributed forms of leadership in educational settings. In Proceedings of Enhancing the Heart, Enriching the Mind: 2008 NZEALS International Educational Leadership Conference, Auckland. (CD-Rom Ed.).
Permanent link to Research Bank record:http://hdl.handle.net/10652/1598
The day to day practice of leadership in education can oscillate from being a rewarding activity one moment, to one that can be littered with confusion and dilemmas the next. Leadership practice can so often lie beyond what is prescribed and standardised, every situation brings with it a uniqueness that cannot be replicated. Leadership can be individual, role-based, conjoint and extremely fluid and emergent; it can often exist in places where we are not looking for it. This paper is informed by 32 studies of distributed forms of leadership practice from around the world and focuses on the issue of intentionality and how it is related to developing communal cultures of emergent and distributed forms of leadership. On one hand, leadership can be intentionally given out to others as a means of leadership development and also as a way of coping with the intensification of work. On the other hand leadership emerges when formal leaders intentionally stand back and allow others to flourish, be they children, adolescents, adult students, parents/caregivers, or staff. Linked to this issue is the distribution of power in our educational settings, trust, and the importance of open and transparent communication.