Organizations as Human Relations
Team D Class Notes - February 16, 2011

Topic Overview

The implementation of the Human Resource frame differs widely in organizations and in practice. How do you incorporate this view into the structural frame? Or can you? If you can, how far do you take it? The core assumptions of the human resource frame, according to Bolman and Deal (p. 122) are:
  • Organizations exist to serve human needs rather than the converse.
  • People and organizations need each other. Organizations need ideas, energy, and talent, people need careers, salaries and opportunities.
  • When the fit between individual and system is poor, one or both suffer. Individuals are exploited or exploit the organization - or both become victims.
  • A good fit benefits both. Individuals find meaningful and satisfying work, and organizations get the talent and energy they need to succeed.

This section focuses on the analogy of organizations as human relations. This focus is particularly relevant to higher education, where the human resource lens is very popular. An example of "sapiential circles," namely group leadership, is included to illustrate a practical application of human relations frame within an organization. Lastly, an overview of organizations as entities of domination is discussed providing insight into the radical view of organizations. This particular examination of how organizations interact with their constituents is a stark contrast to the view proposed in the human relations metaphor. Within a system of domination, members of the organization are not valued for their individual contributions but are subjected to the will or whimsy of the organization's leader. Conversely, the human resources frame would argue for greater equity and care of the individual members of the organization regardless of where they sit on the hierarchical totem pole.

Key Terminology

Term or
Goal-Setting Theory
"Managers may do better by emphasizing specific performance goals than by worrying about employees' psychic needs."
Bolman and Deal, p. 122
"A genetic predisposition to prefer some experiences over others. Needs energize and guide behavior and vary in potency at different times."
Bolman and Deal, p. 123
Theory X
Management assumptions that subordinates are "passive and lazy, have little ambition, prefer to be led and resist change." Can either be "hard" - emphasizing "tight controls, threats, or punishments" or "soft" - emphasizing avoidance of conflict and keeping everyone happy.
Bolman and Deal, p. 125-126
Theory Y
Management theory that proposes arranging working conditions that support self-interests and self-directed work. By allowing employees to do what they like and rewarding them for doing well, managers can achieve a higher job satisfaction rate from employees.
Bolman and Deal, p. 126
Giving people jobs that involve little or no work. "This can occur for a variety of reasons: union pressures, nepotism (employing family members), or 'kicking someone upstairs' (moving an underperformer into a job with no significant responsibilities)."
Bolman and Deal, p. 129 and 138
Skill Gap
As organizations seek more qualified individuals with skills superior to previous employees, those who are looking for jobs that should require their skills, but often times require more, are faced with the possibility of not finding a job. "Organizations struggle to find people who bring the skills and qualities needed while individuals with yesterday's skills face dismal job prospects"
Bolman and Deal, p. 133
Employee Stock Ownership Plans
Bolman and Deal, p. 147
Scanlon Plans
Give workers an incentive to reduce costs and improve efficiency by offering them a share of gains. (introduced in 1930s)
Bolman and Deal, p. 147
Open Book Management
Three basic principles in Open Book Management
  1. All employees at every level should see and learn to understand financial and performance measures
  2. Employes are encouraged to think like owners, doing whatever they can to improve the numbers
  3. Everyone gets a piece of the action - a stake in the company's financial success
Bolman and Deal, p. 149
Total Quality Management (TQM)
"Emphasize[s] workforce involvement, participations, and teaming as essential components of a serious quality effort." Four core assumptions in TQM:
  1. High quality is actually cheaper than low quality
  2. People want to do good work
  3. Quality problems are cross-functional
  4. Top management is ultimately responsible for quality
Bolman and Deal, p. 159
Organizational Development (OD)
"An array of ideas and techniques designed to help managers convert intention to reality"
Bolman and Deal, p. 162
Training Groups or "human resource laboratories"
Bolman and Deal, p.162
social domination
The process by which the will of an individual or group is imposed on others, often involving exploitation of the subordinate group.
Morgan, p. 293
charismatic domination
One of three types of social domination identified by Max Weber, where a leader rules based on personal characteristics. This is an unstructured and unstable administrative structure, with officials being just a few followers or intermediaries.
Morgan, p. 295
traditional domination
This type of domination comes from a system based on tradition and power is typically inherited, such as in a monarchy. The administrative structure can be patriarchal--where the administrators are personal retainers, such as relatives, servants, or favorites, who are dependent on the ruler for money and subsistence. The administration can also be feudal--by pledging their allegiance to the ruler, they have a certain amount of independence, and do not rely entirely on the ruler for money or survival.
Morgan, p. 295
rational-legal domination
Power comes from rules and laws; a ruler can only be chosen by following the legal process by which to be appointed.
Morgan, p. 295
occupational disease
Disease or illness occurring as a result of conditions of employment, such as coal miners suffering from black lung, asbestos workers suffering from cancer.
Morgan, p. 292
Giant corporations that "account for over 70% of world trade." Also known as transnationals (TNCs)
Morgan, p. 315
Multinationals with headquarters in the United States, Europe and Japan
Morgan, p. 316
sapiential circles
knowledge-generating groups
Bennis, para. 6

Summary of Readings

Bolman and Deal Chapter 6: People and Organizations

“Sacrificing people for profits reinvigorates age-old images of insensitive, heartless employers (Amar, 2004)" p. 121


There are differing views about human resources:
  • Individuals as objects to be exploited by organizations
  • Needs of individuals and organizations can be aligned so that the talent and skills of individuals are utilized while profit grows

The Human Resource frame evolved from the work of Mary Parker Follet (1918) and Elton May (1933, 1945). They postulated that the skills, attitudes, energy, and commitments of individuals are important resources that can make or break a corporation.

Institutional "fit" is a function of:
  • How well the organization responds to individual desires for useful work
  • How well jobs enable employers to express their skills and sense of self
  • How well work fulfills individual financial and life-style needs


The concept of human need is controversial
  • Some believe needs are variable and influenced by surroundings;
  • Others say managers do better by emphasizing specific performance goals rather than by worrying about employees’ psychic needs;
  • Economists point to the willingness to make trade-offs as disproving human need.

Example of Wegmans—the needs of customers are best fulfilled when fulfilling needs of own people (employees)


McGregor (1960) expanded on Maslow’s theory saying managers’ assumptions about people tend to be self-fulfilling prophecies; most managers use “Theory X” assumptions, believing subordinates are passive and lazy, having little ambition, preferring to be led, and resist change.

Built on either “hard” or “soft” version—hard emphasizes coercion, tight controls, threats, and punishments- generates low productivity over time, as well as antagonism, etc. Soft versions of Theory X try to avoid conflict and keep everyone happy; usually results in superficial harmony with apathy and indifference.

“The essential task of management is to arrange conditions so that people can achieve their own goals best by directing efforts toward organizational rewards” (McGregor, 1960, p. 61)


  • Argyris (1957, 1964) points to “self actualization trends”—people advance from dependence to independence from infancy into adulthood, from a narrow to a broader range of skills; move from short time perspective to more long-term horizon
  • Argyris believed orgs often treat workers like children rather than adults; conflict intensifies especially at lower levels when employees mature
  • Argyris argued employees stay sane by 6 escape mechanisms
  1. Withdraw via chronic absenteeism or simply quitting
  2. Stay on the job but withdraw psychologically, becoming indifferent, passive, and apathetic
  3. Resist by restricting output, deception, featherbedding, or sabotage
  4. Try to climb hierarchy to better jobs
  5. Form alliances (such as labor unions) to redress the power imbalance
  6. Teach their children to believe that work is unrewarding and hopes for advancement are slim


Person-organization relationship has become even more problematic as global trends have pushed orgs in two conflicting directions—global competition, rapid change, etc have produced turbulent, intensely competitive world putting premium on ability to adapt quickly to shifts in environment… one way to do so is to minimize fixed human assets; on the other hand, some global forces push toward growing dependence on well-trained loyal human capital; decentralized structures

Shift from production-intensive to information-intensive economy
Skill gap is greater in developing nations (but present everywhere)

Dilemma of whether to seek flexible/adaptable workers or ones with high skills

Smaller, more flexible workforce gives benefits of lower costs, higher efficiency, and greater ability to respond to business fluctuation

Downsizing is trading short-term gains for long-term decay

Often called “dumbsizing”

Research confirms cutting people hurts more than it helps (Cascio, Young, and Morris, 1997; Gertz and Baptista, 1995; Love and Kraatz, 2005; Mellahi and Wilkinson, 2006)

Downsizing and outsourcing impacts the way Americans perceive company loyalty to employees


Motivated well-trained workforce is a powerful source of strategic advantage

Southwest Airlines as an example

“Those who produce should share in the profits” and “treat others as you would be treated” (Kauffman, 1996, 40)- p 136

Ultimately, the greatest takeaway message is that the Human Resource Frame highlights the relationship between people and organizations

Bolman and Deal Chapter 7: Improving Human Resource Management

The Human Resource frame values the relationship between the organization and the people who work for the organization. The frame discusses how organizations benefit from having the most talented employees working for them. When employees are happy with their jobs they are more productive, innovative and willing to go above and beyond their expectations at work. An employee who feels valued by their organization is less likely to make a costly blunder or run to the first employer who offers them a better deal.

While some companies, such as Google, see the benefits in paying their employees higher wages, providing exceptional health benefits, free child care, and other free services so that their employees don’t have to spend time worrying about personal distractions, other companies see these things as indulging workers and fear their managers will lose control over their employees. The other reason companies do not invest in these benefits is because it would require investing time and money into an employee initially in hopes that there is a payoff in the future. With the current economic climate it is financially easier for a company to slash costs or change their company’s strategy so that financial gains are seen immediately.

Organizations that productively manage their employees typically use some variation of the principles outlines below (chart from Bolman and Deal, p.142):
Human Resource Principle
Specific Practices
Build and Implement an HR Strategy
Develop a shared philosophy for managing people.
Build systems and practices to implement the philosophy.
Hire the Right People
Know what you want.
Be Selective.
Keep Them
Reward Well.
Protect Jobs.
Promote from within.
Share the wealth.
Invest in them
Invest in learning.
Create development opportunities.
Empower Them.
Provide information and support.
Encourage autonomy and participation
Redesign work
Foster self-managing teams
Promote egalitarianism
Promote Diversity
Be explicit and consistent about the organization’s diversity philosophy.
Hold managers accountable.
Employee Ownership Plans (Gain-sharing and Profit-sharing) (p. 142)
"Plan success depends on effective implementation of three elements of the 'equity model'":
  1. Employees must have a significant ownership share in the company
  2. The organization needs to build an "ownership culture" (p.34) by sharing financial data, involving employees in decisions, breaking down the hierarchy, emphasizing teams and cross-training, and protecting jobs.
  3. It is important that "employees both learn and drive the business disciplines that help their company do well." Employees, through key disciplines such as technical innovation, cost control, or customer service, understand what it takes to make the company competitive and focus on making it work.

Three critical factors in job redesign (Hackman, Oldham, Janson, and Purdy, 1987, p.320):
  1. Individuals need to see their work as meaningful and worthwhile.
  2. Individuals need to use discretion and judgment so they can feel personally accountable for results.
  3. Individuals need to receive feedback about their efforts so they can improve.

Four barriers to job enrichment (p. 154)
  1. Technical imperatives make simple, repetitive work efficient and cheap
  2. The belief that workers produce more in a theory x environment
  3. Many jobs cannot be altered without major investments in redesigning physical plant and machinery
  4. When it works, job enrichment leads to pressures for systemwide change

For the human resource strategies to effectively be implemented, a comprehensive approach and lasting commitment must be made. TQM is given as an example of a strategy that combines structural and human resource elements, and which was popular in the 1980s. Many organizations implemented parts of TQM, and while some—such as Motorola—experienced some success, many others were unsuccessful in achieving their objectives, because they did not implement all the core assumptions of TQM. New United Motors Manufacturing, Inc. (NUMMI), a joint venture between Toyota and GM, was given as a collaboration that successful used TQM standards, but it also described how GM struggled to apply the techniques used as NUMMI to its other plants.

Training Groups (T-Groups) (p.162)
  • "Conflict laboratories": designed for situations involving friction among groups and organizational units
  • "Team-building": created to help groups work more effectively
  • "Future search" and "open space": bringing together sizable numbers of people drawn from different constituencies to work on key issues or challenges

Morgan Chapter 9: The Ugly Face: Organizations as Instruments of Domination

The metaphor of organizations as instruments of domination examines how organizations put profits and the bottom line ahead of the good of the people who work for them, exploiting the employees and sacrificing their health and well-being for growth or profit, even in cases where the profit may only be in the short-term. Morgan contends that all organizations contain some degree of domination.

The chapter starts by reviewing how organizations have been associated with social domination throughout history, including the building of the pyramids, slavery, and the use of labor during the Industrial Revolution—during which time labor became a commodity and it became necessary to earn wages to make a living. Radical organization theorists have studied the views of social domination by sociologists Karl Marx, Max Weber, and Robert Michels. Weber identified three types of social domination which through rationalization could become accepted forms of power: charismatic domination, traditional domination, and rational-legal domination. Michels had similar concerns, believing that organizations end up being controlled by a small number of people, and that as leaders rise to power they become more focused on their own interests, even in supposedly democratic organizations. Marx believed the domination was driven by the desire for increased wealth. In recent years, radical organization theorists have become interested in these ideas, studying how current organizations dominate and exploit people in multiple ways.

Organization has been class-based throughout history, and this is visible in the segmentation of the labor market which continues to reinforce these divisions. The primary labor market is comprised of highly skilled or educated people in career jobs; it is an elite core of an organization. The organization invests in these employees and in return it can expect commitment and loyalty from them. The secondary labor market typically consists of less educated, lower skilled, and lower paid people, often minorities, handicapped people, and other disadvantaged groups. This sector acts as a “buffer” allowing an organization to adapt—in good times they can add people from the secondary sector to increase output, and in bad times they can downsize within the sector, leaving the primary sector unaffected. The secondary sector is often left to perform the jobs no one else wants—dirty work—for little money, benefits, or security. The domination and exploitation of minorities and socially disadvantaged people has led to debate about whether or not this is a form of institutionalized discrimination. Whether it is intended or not, modern organizations use a power structure that favors some and disadvantages many, which reinforces socioeconomic divisions.

Organizations affect our health and well-being with work hazards, occupational disease, and accidents. This is also class-based: blue-collar workers experience more safety issues and accidents, as well as health risks—lung diseases, skin diseases, heart problems. White-collar workers face other issues such as stress, coronary disease, social and mental problems, and workaholism. Many organizations do not address these safety and health problems until legislation forces them to, and in Third World countries, current conditions are still terrible, with child labor and sweatshops being used. To keep profits high, it is easier for some organizations to continue exploiting their employees because “it is often cheaper to pay accident compensation than to eliminate accidents or diseases by making work safe” (Morgan, 2006, p. 309). To even avoid this situation and to increase profits, many companies have moved their operations to Third World countries, where labor is cheaper and there are not strict health and safety regulations.

"Our organizations are killing us!" (Morgan, 2006, p. 291) Click on links below for 2009 work injury and illness statistics.
Click on the link and go to page 4 to view large chart

Click on the link and go to page 4 to view large chart

Multinational organizations exemplify the interaction between labor and management on a global level. Exxon Mobile and Wal-Mart are examples of multinational entities. These organizations have evolved from large specialized organizations (late 19th/early 20th century) to diversified conglomerates (mid 20th century). An increase in centralized control caused the emergence of diversified conglomerates. Centralized control “has been accompanied by an increasingly broad-based pattern of ownership” resulting in rewards for the owners (Morgan, 2006, p. 218).

Multinational organizations maintain dominance through wielding their economic, cultural and political power. “Of all organizations, the multinationals come closest to realizing Max Weber’s worst fears with regard to how bureaucratic organizations can become totalitarian regimes serving the interests of elites, where those in control are able to exercise power that is practically unshatterable” (Morgan, 2006, p. 319). Although Weber primarily viewed these organizations from a radical perspective, there are others whose views of these organizations vastly contradict Weber. Advocates of multinationals cite the benefits of job creation and increased capital (Morgan, 2006). Critics of multinationals identify drawbacks including, but not limited to: enabling Third World country’s dependence upon the organization, exploitation of local employees and evading taxes in host nations (Morgan, 2006).

Pros (Advocate View)
Cons (Radical Critique)
“…partners in progress, modernization, and development, and , in the view of advocates of this partnership, the majority of multinationals usually behave in exemplary way” (Morgan, 2006, p. 329).
"The modern state and multinational corporations act as partners in systemic dominiation" (Morgan, 2006, p. 329).

There are strengths and weaknesses to viewing organizational theory through the lens of the domination metaphor. “Clearly if those managing organizations were to attempt to deal with the radical frame of reference by accepting rather than denying its legitimacy, as tends to be the situation at present, this would help initiate a new era of employee relations and conceptions of corporate responsibility” (Morgan, 2006, p. 331).

Bennis: The Secrets of Great Groups

"Complimentary minds allied in [a] common purpose" (para. 3)

Bennis suggests that "Great Groups" are combinations of the best people thrown together for a common purpose. These individuals are incredibly intelligent, leaders in their fields and are "strong individual achievers" (para. 3). Not only do these groups produce high quality results but they also provide a network of support of each member of the group.

Bennis cites 10 principles that are common among Great Groups:
  1. At the heart of every Great Group is a shared dream.
  2. They manage conflict by abandoning individual egos to the pursuit of the dream.
  3. They are protected from the "suits."
  4. They have a real or invented enemy.
  5. They view themselves as winning underdogs.
  6. Members pay a personal price.
  7. Great Groups make strong leaders.
  8. Great Groups are the product of meticulous recruiting.
  9. Great Groups are usually young.
  10. Real artists ship.

Leadership in these groups varies. At some point each member of the group may play the role of the leader of the group. These leaders generally take on the tasks that no one else in the group wants to complete - "cajoler, taskmaster, protector, or doer" - but are necessary in order to complete the work that the group has set out to accomplish.

Leaders of Great Groups are described by four behavioral traits:
  1. Provide direction and meaning
  2. Generate and sustain trust
  3. Display a bias toward action, risk taking, and curiosity
  4. Are purveyors of hope

Finally, Bennis suggests that the idea of Great Groups' leadership and management has something to offer in the way of examples. Great Groups rely on certain key aspects that allow them to function at such a high level - "effective communication, exceptional recruitment, genuine empowerment, personal commitment." Furthermore, training for managers and educational institutions should look to Great Groups to inform their teaching practices by focusing more on group development opportunities in addition to individual development.

Classroom Discussion, Handouts, Reminders

Class Agenda
  • (5 Minutes) Housekeeping: Program questions? March 2nd event
  • (30 Minutes) Theory X/Theory Y
  • (30 Minutes) Human Resource Frame - discussion [Powerpoint Slides]
  • (15 Minutes) BREAK
  • (45 Minutes) Video
  • (30 Minutes) Roles of Leadership

If you have questions regarding program plans for next year, please see Pam.

Thursday, March 3 from 7-9PM is the Dessert Reception for newly admitted students.invite.jpg

March 2nd class will start at 6:00PM with a talk by Chon Glover about diversity issues. Remind 4:30PM class professors about this arrangement.
Theory X/Theory Y Worksheet
Which one are you? Which one is your organization operating from?
The amount of personal responsibility an individual wants in his/her job might be a result of where that person is in his/her career or maturity.
One's motivation is determined by both extrinsic and intrinsic factors.

How do we compare Mintzberg's bureaucracy framework with the human resource frame in a higher education setting?
Faculty members may not be too keen on relinquishing control; they want to be involved in as many things are possible to feel like they wield some power in decision making at the institutional level. Faculty who are highly autonomous may view the bureaucracy as stifling and a challenge to developing any form of leadership. Institutional context plays a role.

Human Resource Frame Discussion
As a leader, do you feel like you align with the HR frame? Many educators do.
The human resource frame seems to encourage promotion from within an organization. There is no magic CO who can come in and fix things. While bringing in a new perspective can be beneficial in times of restructure, having personnel that have "grown" with the organization and understand the culture behind the organization may be more highly considered when trying to fill a position. It becomes difficult to move up a level in an organization but even harder to move up a level and move to a different institution.

What qualities make the position of college President seem aversive?
What would you want to know from President Reveley about his role?
Considering asking President Reveley to attend class one night so we can ask him questions about his role.

See Articles in section C and D under Extra Resources for two articles relating to the current "crisis" that faces higher education in finding qualified leaders who are willing to step up to the plate.

Movie Review
Watched two clips from A Night at the Museum followed by answering the following questions:
Clip 1 Clip 2 (Both clips will require your blackboard sign in to access)
1. What elements of the human frame are evident in the movie clip? (consider the assumptions put forth by Bolman & Deal)
  • Ben Stiller's character focused on the common goal and encouraged the characters to put aside their individual egos. Additionally, he talked about the value of each individual as part of the whole.
  • Core Assumption 2: People and Organizations need each other.
    • The museum needed the tablet in order to come to life. It wouldn't be a museum without all the artifacts that were in it.
  • Core Assumption 3: When the fit between individual and system is poor, one or both suffer.
    • The members of the museum were hurting each other because some were being exploited and misunderstood.
  • Core Assumption 4: A good fit benefits both.
    • Once harmony was achieved, the members of the museum had more fun and could interact with one another in a light hearted and peaceful manner.

2. What do you assume transpired between scene one and scene two? Evidence?
  • The characters have come together to work for a shared vision and have some degree of unification. Additionally, the fun party they are having while Ben Stiller watches is a form of incentivizing their collaboration.
  • Evidence - Conflict resolution: Jed and Octavius working together, friends at the end when before they continually fought.

3. What allowed the Ben Stiller character to make the shift from one of control to one of relationships? What paradigm was he using?
  • Needed authoritative push in order to move to leadership based on relationship
  • By having a common goal - retrieving the tablet - it gave the members of the museum a reason to work together. Ben Stiller's character really gave each internal conflict his time and attention and addressed the smaller problems so that they could reunite as a group to save the museum. He was using the Social Constructivist paradigm - trying to come to a consensus, agreement by having a communal discussion about what was bothering everyone.

Roles of Leaderships

Morgan states,
Clearly, if those managing organizations were to attempt to deal with the radical frame of reference by accepting rather than denying its legitimacy, as tends to be the situation at present, this would help initiate a new era of employee relations and conceptions of corporate responsibility. (p. 331)

  • What is assumed in this statement?
    • Domination is inevitable. Do we acknowledge it? Can we do that? Do we believe it exists?
  • How might this type of change occur? Does the environment matter? Does the leader matter?
  • How might Bennis argue group leadership would handle the domination frame?
    • The Bennis article talked about how proximity from the central hub was integral to the success of the Great Groups.
    • Who has what role?
    • Can we say it out loud?
    • How do we move from a system that limits us to a system that allows for better group work?
  • What view would the various paradigms offer as insights?
    • Positivist
    • Social Construction
    • Post-Modern

Extra Resources


1. What does it mean to be motivated? And what exactly is our motivation to work? To do work that we enjoy?

2. This clip relates more to Bolman and Deal's mention of Rivet Hockey in Chapter 6. It is amazing what office workers can think up when they are not being motivated towards better productivity.

3. To see what some offices do during downtime (besides Rivet Hockey) check out the following links to other clips:
Office Jousting
Office Sports


The PDF link below is for an article about how best to achieve the 8 goals of the United Nations Millenium Campaign. The article discusses how a partnership model is necessary over a domination model.

Article Summary
The UN Millenium goals envision a more just and sustainable future. This article explains why there is a need to shift from domination model to a partnership model in meeting the UN Millenium goals. The domination model is a configuration based on top-down rankings of control, while the partnership model is a configuration that can support a more equitable, peaceful, and sustainable way of life. In partnership-oriented societies, whether in the family, the workplace, or society at large, so-called feminine qualities and behaviours, whether they reside in women or men, are not only held in high esteem, but also incorporated into the operational values system. There is a more democratic and egalitarian social structure, equal partnership between women and men, and less built-in violence, as it is not needed to maintain rigid rankings of domination. To successfully meet the UN Millenium Goals, initiatives aimed at changing dominator economic and political structures worldwide are needed. However, moving to partnership structures does not mean a completely flat organisation nor mandatory consensus. Systemic change requires taking into account the whole social system, going beyond what are conventionally considered the "important economic and political issues". It requires leaders who understand that real leadership in this time must empower rather than disempower, that everyone's creativity and participation are needed, and that working together, people can lay solid foundations on which to build a more sustainable, equitable and peaceful world culture.


Mead-Fox, D. (2010). It's Getting Harder to Find Superior Leaders. Chronicle of Higher Education, 56 (17), D25-D26.
Abstract: The article discusses the difficulty of finding superior academic leaders, noting the necessity of conducting a strategic and rigorous search process and for institutions to intentionally nurture their own leadership talent. Reasons given for the difficulties include dual income families in which both individuals carry the responsibility of caring for children and elderly parents, the expansion of administrative jobs to include fund raising, outside constituency obligations, and legal issues, and pressure to advocate for higher education issues. All of the above, it notes, contribute to shorter tenures for administrators. Critical tensions faced by new administrators include democracy versus hierarchy, flexibility versus structure, and charisma versus fit.


Ekman, R. (2010). The Imminent Crisis in College Leadership. Chronicle of Higher Education, 57(5), A88.
Abstract: The article discusses the small number of college administrators who are willing to become college presidents, why some find the role so unattractive, and the fear that universities and colleges will be run by leaders who do not have the requisite experience. It is noted that some college presidents have been recruited from outside of academia such as business or the military. The author recommends that college teachers be groomed for leadership positions and makes recommendations regarding college president searches.