'Adopting a post-positivist phenomenological perspective inspired by the writings of Husserl and Heidegger among others, Donna Ladkin crafts a series of philosophical questions that prompt the reader to deconstruct and reposition many habitually held views of leaders and leadership. Through her deep questioning, Ladkin reminds us that wisdom -- the virtue of practical circumspection -- is central to the ethical and aesthetic moment of leading. Rethinking Leadership is a refreshing and much-needed re-evaluation of the field, which should be read by anyone with a serious interest in the subject.'
- Peter Case, University of the West of England, UK'Writing anything new about leadership might seem like a difficult task these days. Writing anything new and interesting about leadership might seem beyond most of us. Writing anything new, interesting and provocative about leadership is restricted to only a few very talented scholars. Ladkin is one of these very talented scholars -- she has done all three in a groundbreaking review of the nature of leadership and the questions we should be asking about this phenomenon.'
- Keith Grint, University of Warwick, UK
A must-read for serious leadership studies scholars, Rethinking Leadership offers a radical reconceptualization of leadership as a contextually embedded, physically embodied phenomenon. The book arrives at original and surprising answers to perennial questions such as 'What is leadership?' and 'How do leaders lead change?', by addressing them from a philosophical, rather than psychological or sociological standpoint.
Beautifully written, Ladkin makes complex ideas accessible by illustrating them with practical examples drawn from her wide experience as a leadership academic and management consultant across a range of commercial, political and not-for-profit organisations. A fresh voice amongst the crowded field of leadership studies, Rethinking Leadership delivers not just new answers, but an entirely new way of thinking about leadership and its role in contemporary society.
Contents: Preface; 1. Why Study Leadership from a Philosophical Perspective?; 2. Why are There so Many Different Theories of Leadership?; 3. Why is it so Difficult to Study Leadership?; 4. What Goes on in the Relationship between Leaders and Followers?; 5. What is Charismatic Leadership?; 6. What is so Important About the 'Vision-Thing'?; 7. How do Leaders Lead Change? Co-authored with Martin Wood and John Pillay; 8. How Can Individuals Take Up the Leader Role Wisely?; 9. What Has it Meant to Rethink Leadership?; Bibliography; Index