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Leadership Theory & Practice in the Outdoors, Summer 2009


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Lecture 4, REC 215: Outdoor Recreation & Education. 2-hour class included some lecture, with mostly group work and discussion, as well as written reflection assessing the application and synthesis of readings and in-class discussion.

Leadership Theory & Practice in the Outdoors, Summer 2009

  1. 1. Leadership Theory & Practice in the Outdoors REC 215: Outdoor Recreation & Education Summer 2009 Janene Giuseffi, Instructor
  2. 2.   Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.   Few are willing to brave the disapproval of their fellows, the censure of their colleagues, the wrath of their society. Moral courage is a rarer commodity than bravery in battle or great intelligence. Yet it is the one essential, vital quality for those who seek to change a world that yields most painfully to change. Robert F. Kennedy
  3. 3. What is leadership? <ul><li>Leadership is intentional. It aims toward the accomplishment of particular goals and outcomes. </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership is interactional. It involves relationships between two or more individuals in a particular situation. </li></ul>Leadership is one of the most observed and least understood phenomena on earth
  4. 4. Leadership Theories <ul><li>Trait Theory </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Leaders are born, not made </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Exhibit certain physical, intellectual, and interpersonal characteristics </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Great Men Theory </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Explains leadership by focusing on the greatness of actual leaders </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Certain men were are predestined to be leaders based on factors like birth order, education, family background, and upbringing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>World was shaped by these men </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Leadership Theories <ul><li>Charismatic and Heroic Leadership </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Throughout history, charismatic leaders have played significant roles politically, economically, and socially </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Inspire and generate unusually passionate responses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Often emerge in a time of crises as prospective saviors who my their magical endowments, will fulfill the unmet emotional needs of their followers” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Heroic leadership = a relationship between leader and followers where dormant followers become active, motivating others and furthering the cause </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Transactional Leadership <ul><li>Transactional Leadership occurs when one person takes the initiative in making contact with others for the purpose of an exchange of valued things. The exchange could be economic or political or psychological in nature: a swap of goods or of one good for money. . . . </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Task oriented </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Offer of reward, threat of punishment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Works within the framework of self-interests </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Transformational Leadership <ul><li>Transformational leadership occurs when one or more persons engage with others in such a way that leaders and followers raise one another to higher levels of motivation and morality. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Seeks to change framework of self-interests </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Asks followers to transcend their own self interest </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider need to develop themselves, circumstances, and their followers </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Leadership Styles <ul><li>Autocratic: Authoritarian approach in which you hold complete power. </li></ul><ul><li>Democratic: Shared decision-making, with you and the group working together to solve problems. </li></ul><ul><li>Abdicratic (laissez-faire): Abdication of all decision-making power directly to the group. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Leadership Styles <ul><li>Democratic leadership occurs when leaders induce followers to act for certain goals that represent the values and the motivations – the wants and needs, the aspirations and expectations – of both leaders and followers. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Continuum of Leadership Styles
  11. 11. Factors to Consider <ul><ul><li>Age distribution of group </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Skill level of group </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Challenge of task at hand </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Risks involved </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Stage in group formation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Storming vs. Performing? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Environmental factors – </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Weather </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Water level </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Temperament </li></ul></ul></ul>Scenarios…
  12. 12. Situational Leadership Theory
  13. 13. Conditional Outdoor Leadership Theory <ul><li>Conditional Favorability: </li></ul><ul><li>Environmental Dangers </li></ul><ul><li>Individual Competence </li></ul><ul><li>Group Unity </li></ul><ul><li>Leader Proficiency </li></ul><ul><li>Consequences of Decision </li></ul>
  14. 14. Walsh & Gollins’ Outward Bound Process Model A Learner Prescribed physical environment Prescribed social environment Characteristic set of problem-solving tasks State of adaptive dissonance Mastery or competence Reorganization of the meaning and direction of the experience The learner continues to be oriented toward living and learning
  15. 15. Imagine yourself on a 30-day wilderness expedition with an autocratic leader. What kind of behavior would you expect this leader to exhibit? What would the group experience and learning be like compared to a democratic or abdicratic leader?