There have again been increasing calls for management educators to strengthen the development of leadership in their programmes. However, it is unclear as to how such calls can be best answered. One way forward may be to rethink our conceptualisation of leadership. This paper seeks to address this issue.
Dominant theories of leadership may offer limited help to management educators. The dominant conceptualisation of leadership is questioned using empirical evidence from recent studies and interviews undertaken by the authors which examined managers' understandings of leadership.
This article suggests that mainstream leadership theories are framed by systems‐control thinking and highlights a number of issues in respect of teaching leadership. Proposes that a process‐relational framing of leadership may be a more useful way to think about leadership.
Whilst the interview data drawn upon is exploratory and therefore cannot be taken as conclusive, we hope to stimulate a wider rethinking of leadership than is currently present.
Tentative suggestions are presented for responding to calls to improve the teaching of leadership.
The paper emphasises a process‐relational understanding of leadership and may be seen to offer practical help to management educators concerned with the teaching of leadership.
Hay, A. and Hodgkinson, M. (2006), "Rethinking leadership: a way forward for teaching leadership?", Leadership & Organization Development Journal, Vol. 27 No. 2, pp. 144-158. https://doi.org/10.1108/01437730610646642
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2006, Emerald Group Publishing Limited