Getting to the Heart of Leadership: Emotion and Educational Leadership

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Description 'This book makes an important contribution to the literature on educational leadership and should help to shift the emphasis from rational and accountability-related models to an explicit recognition of the importance of emotions to effective leadership' - Educational Management Administration and Leadership '[This book] contains a wealth of case studies and vignettes to help leaders be more aware of the ways in which emotion impacts on their practice, and to develop a productive and sustainable set of emotional responses, experiences and leadership tools' - Headteacher Update 'This is a highly readable and engaging introduction to both the importance and power of emotions in the life and work of headteachers.

While leaders' emotions have been badly neglected in the literature, the rich body of evidence the author shares with readers indicates how central such emotions are to sustaining improvement efforts in schools. This extremely important book brings to the forefront the emotional attachments of leadership, the interpersonal relationships, and self-awareness that are at the core of leadership action and decision making.

The case stories and reviews of multiple perspectives and theories provide the reader with a rich and essential resource' - Ellen B. The book is framed to illuminate how headteachers experience, and talk about, emotion and meaning in their daily interactions, and sets out to understand how emotion impacts on their leadership. Megan Crawford aims to help school leaders understand why emotion is such a powerful component of leadership.

The author examines how school leaders experience emotion and meaning in their daily interactions, and presents a reflective journey, concentrating on the personal side of school leadership. This book is for practising educational leaders and managers, tutors and students on Masters courses, EdD courses, and on programmes such as the National Professional Qualification for Headship, its equivalent for Children's centres, and other national programmes in educational leadership and management show more. Product details Format Paperback pages Dimensions x x Review quote '[This is] a very accessible book that is written in an engaging and fluid style Its strong points are the leadership voices that flow through the book and are both captivating and informative and do so much to link theories and ideas to practice In summary this an excellent book, well worth the read' - Professor Brent Davies, The University of Hull Business School 'This book makes an important contribution to the literature on educational leadership and should help to shift the emphasis from rational and accountability-related models to an explicit recognition of the importance of emotions to effective leadership' - Educational Management Administration and Leadership '[This book] contains a wealth of case studies and vignettes to help leaders be more aware of the ways in which emotion impacts on their practice, and to develop a productive and sustainable set of emotional responses, experiences and leadership tools' - Headteacher Update 'The format is succinct and the language accessible so that the book directly engages with the reader James, W.

What is an emotion? Mind, 9 , — Lakomski, G. Passionate rationalism: The role of emotion in decision making. Journal of Educational Administration, 48 , — Panksepp, J. Affective neuroscience: The foundations of human and animal emotions. New York: Oxford University Press. Prinz, J. Emotions embodied. Solomon Ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

At the Heart of Leadership – The EQ Store

Solomon, R. The philosophy of emotions. In my experience, however, I noticed that EI has become a buzz term that many use yet face challenges in its implementation. I then make connections between EI and mindfulness, discuss why mindfulness should be used to cultivate EI, and explain the relationship between mindfulness and leadership.

I conclude the paper with recommendations for adult-learning practitioners who create EI- and mindfulness- based training, followed by directions for future research. Learning can be categorized in three distinct domains: cognitive, affective, and psychomotor Clarke, Krathwohl, Bloom, and Masia codified the affective domain, which specifically is concerned with the self, including feelings and emotions. Finally, the psychomotor domain Simpson, primarily refers to the use of coordinated physical movement. I create and deliver learning using all three of the above domains.

Of the three, I find that the psychomotor and cognitive domains tend to be easier to quantify and assess; for example, asking learners to demonstrate a cognitive process can be as simple as having them explain what they understood, while psychomotor skills can be exhibited through mere role-play. As for the affective domain, however, it is rather difficult to assess and even explain how feelings, emotions, and the self can be developed, given that feelings and emotions are internal processes in the mind.

More recent studies indicate that our decisions are largely made based on how we feel Marchant, ; essentially, our feelings—which are grounded in emotions—guide the decisions we make Marchant, For example, there are times that my learners have told me they understood the information they received but, given their feelings towards the information, decided not to implement the newly acquired knowledge into their day-to-day practices.

Essentially, this definition places emotions at the center of everything that we do. As cited in Velisavljevic, , Definition section, para. Goleman added five key competencies that drive EI: self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skills p.

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With regards to motivation, Goleman also highlights the importance of persistence and resilience. When teaching leaders the competencies and skills needed to grow EI, I have made note of an interesting observation. Upon finishing their classes, the leaders were able to describe the importance of EI and cognitively grasp the various competencies and skills associated with EI. However, even though these leaders were fully engaged and focused in the classes, they had mentioned to me that that they were unable to demonstrate practical improvement in their emotional intelligence.

Essentially, the leaders had explained to me that the training had no impact or effect on their behaviours whatsoever. As a learning and development professional, this challenge perplexed me.

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I decided to change my educational approach by leveraging a variety of exercises, but to no avail. I thus began to realize that teaching EI merely from a cognitive perspective contributes very little to the creation or development of emotionally intelligent leaders. My belief is that EI is predicated on the need to push deeper into our mental and emotional capabilities in order to truly feel, experience, and understand EI.

That is to say, we need to push beyond the surface. It is here that I have discovered and continue to explore the important connection between EI and mindfulness.

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I have witnessed many learners, including seasoned leaders, experience challenges growing their EI. As noted earlier, numerous studies have shown it can be difficult to develop EI Chamorro-Premuzic, ; Kocis, Said another way, if individuals assume they already are self-aware even if they are not , they will see no reason to develop their self-awareness. In short, if an individual assumes that something is not possible, then it is not possible. I believe that assumptions can become limitations, distracting us from truly understanding ourselves and realizing our full potential.

I believe the implications of assumptions are significant insofar as they can influence our thinking, which in turn influences our actions. Mindfulness may help break this cycle and allow us to tap into our deepest thoughts and become more self-aware.


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Because I have found many connections between EI and mindfulness — which I will explain below — I believe that mindfulness is an important aspect of growing EI. Although mindfulness practices began thousands of years ago, present-day mindfulness therapies are credited to Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, an American professor of medicine at the University of Massachusetts who developed a stress-reduction program in the late s Fossas, While theories of mindfulness have evolved over the years, the objective of mindfulness remains the same: to achieve a state of profound insight Fossas, Rynes et al.

Broadening the definition and the scope of mindfulness, Dr. Kabat-Zinn also explains that the word for mind and heart in Asian languages are the same, and that mindfulness and compassion are interconnected as cited in Szalavitz, This interconnectedness demonstrates that mindfulness contains an emotional component. Said another way, how can emotional and intellectual growth come about without rigorous mental practice? For example, Brown and Ryan and Levesque and Brown found that individuals who are mindful are more intrinsically motivated as cited in Kroon et al.

Brown and Ryan also point out that those who are mindful have greater self-awareness and are better able to regulate their behaviour as cited in Kroon et al. Good et al.

Getting to the Heart of Leadership : Emotion and Educational Leadership

Finally, Frizzell et al. Because preconceived assumptions i. This further reinforces that mindfulness can truly help with the breaking down of assumptions, which in turn may lead to heightened awareness—again a key component of EI. I will now examine connections between mindfulness and leadership. While Leithwood et al.

As such, I define leadership as the practice of continual self-development with the intent of motivating and influencing others to achieve desirable results. The emphasis on results relates to personal growth for each individual being lead and also relates to achieving various organizational metrics. Given my definition of leadership, the purpose of this section is to examine the relationship between mindfulness and leadership.

Frizzell et al. Leadership Development.

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I have observed that leaders who are self-aware tend to clearly articulate their key areas of development and identify a unique action plan that will work for them. Essentially, mindfulness can help leaders develop their self- awareness, which can play a central role in leadership development. Frizzel et al. Ehrlich found that leaders who practice mindfulness become clear on their values, avoid reacting to emotions, and take better care of their bodies and self.

Still, such findings raise some important questions: If leaders do not understand their values, how can they truly and authentically be persuaded to develop themselves? If leaders consistently react based on emotions, how will they practice patience and empathy? Influencing Others and Achieving Results.

I have adopted the concept of transformational leadership, as advanced by Burns in my professional practice as cited in Shields, One of the goals of transformational leadership is effective organizational change and growth Shields, Transformational leaders play a critical role in helping the organization grow at a macro level, primarily by exercising their power to inspire others Shields,