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Leadership Communication as Citizenship

Leadership Communication as Citizenship

First Edition
  • John O. Burtis - University of Northern Iowa, USA
  • Paul D. Turman - Nebraska State College System, Lincoln, NE, South Dakota Board of Regents, USA

December 2009 | 272 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Leadership Communication articulates the important roles communication plays in helping to co-construct group, organizational, or community direction. Leadership Communication focuses on the communication skills necessary to help co-construct an effective direction in one's systems while playing the varied roles of doer, follower, guide, manager, and/or leader.

Leadership Communication is organized around three major units:

1) the integrally linked role played by communication and direction-givers in constructing our past, current, and future experiences;

2) the communication skills required for different types of direction-givers, and

3) the nature of dramatic action, which represents human engagement in systems, that may manifest as ethical action and future experiences.

This book has a number of unique features including:

a coherent and unified set of frameworks with which to synthesize and employ a wide range of leadership research results and theory as well as other practical materials from contemporary leadership studies;

a focus on explaining the common communicative elements and skills (e.g., soliciting and saving narratives for use as teaching tales, strategic stories, and memorable messages; framing and critical incidents; dialog, discussion, and debate) involved across seemingly quite different leadership contexts (e.g., working in groups, in small organizations, in large and complex organizations, in social movements, in communities, and in the broad cultural sweep of civic life);

a discussion of the different processes for attaining a direction-giving role or position given the different needs faced by the system;

an explanation of the art of following, doing, and guiding well: the "small leadership" so often overlooked or undervalued in leader-centric explanations for effective systems;

an explanation of three different orientations for "communicating the vision": selling a vision; working with those who are seeking a vision; and acting with those for whom a vision is an evoked co-construction; and

a discussion of how crisis (as a point of decision or of opportunity) can be useful as a source of the energy and rhetorical resources necessary for rare and difficult forms of dramatic action (leadership).

1. So, You Want Other People to Work Well Together?
Groups Can Create a Community, Calm a Complex Organization, or Move Millions

Grouping, Group Direction, and Direction-Giving Are Human Responses to Exigencies

Direction-Giving Types Include the Work of a Doer, Follower, Guide, Manager, and Leader

Everyone Has the Obligation to Help His or Her Group to Thrive: The Social Contract of Citizenship

2. Distinguish Between Three Direction-Giving Options: Doing, Following, and Guiding
Specific Exigencies, Credentials, and Competencies Frame Each Type of Direction-Giver

Giving Direction as a Doer Requires Competence

Credentialing as a Doer Requires You to Accomplish Something Competently

Communicating Competently Blends Your Act as a Doer Into the Group's Needs

Giving Direction as a Follower Requires Affiliative Receptivity

A Direction-Giver's Initiative Creates an Exigency for a Follower

Credentialing as a Follower Requires Showing You Offer an Able and Desirable Affiliation

Communicating Competently Blends Your Followership With a Direction-Giver's Efforts

Giving Direction as a Guide Requires Credibility

Every Group Needs Direction at Many Points in Time, Creating the Guideship Exigency

Credentialing as a Guide Requires You to Create and Impression of Credibility

Communicating Competently, Your Guideship Ought to Take Care With a Group's Attentions

In Conclusion

3. Understand That Other Direction-Giving Options May Be Needed: Managing or Leading Well
There Are Many Names for Leadership: Definitions Too

Giving Direction as a Manager Requires the Ability to Marshal Resources

The Odious, the Complex, and the Everlasting Provide Exigencies for a Manager

Credentialing as a Manager Is Based in the Stories You and Others Tell of Your Experience

Doing and Interpreting Your Management Work for the Group Requires a Variety of Skills

Giving Direction as a Leader Requires Articulating a Group-Transformative Vision

A System-Threatening Crisis or Opportunity Provides the Exigency for Leadership

Credentialing to Be Seen by Others as a Leader Requires You to Articulate a Salient Vision

Your Effective Leadership Is Not Necessarily Tied to Specific Communication Skills

Beware Easy Misconceptions About These Five Types of Direction-Givers

In Conclusion

4. Use Leadership Theory and Research to Prepare Yourself to Give Direction
The Traits Perspective Focuses on Who You Are to Explain your Effectiveness

Developing Emotional Intelligence and Resilience May Matter More Than Your IQ

Self-Monitoring and Rhetorical Sensitivity Orient You to the Resources Around You

Situational, Styles, and Contingency Perspectives Focus on Behavioral Choices You Make

Great Leaders During Times of Crisis and Hemphill's Work Show That Situation Matters

The Styles Perspective Says Pick the Right Way to Treat Those With Whom You Group

The Contingency Perspective Says You Need to Adjust to Recurring "What Ifs" of Grouping

The Functional Perspective Focuses on What You Can Do for Your Group

Benne and Sheats Say Every Group Must Serve Task, Relational, and Individual Functions

Blake and Mouton's Managerial Grid Says You Need to Balance Those Functions

Your Grouping Choices Also Need to Earn You at Least Once Process Prize From Grouping

Explicit and Implicit Theories of Effective Grouping and Direction-Giving Are in Play

In Conclusion

5. Develop a Framework and Position Yourself for Giving Direction
A Direction-Giving Framework Should Have a Philosophy, Exemplar Model, and Guidelines

Taylor's Scientific Management Is One Framework for Giving Direction Well

Mayo's Hawthorne Effect Shows the Need for a Different Framework

Develop Your Own Effectiveness Framework for Each Type of Direction-Giving You Provide

Your Philosophy Should Put Your Values Into Your Framework and Then Into Action

Your Exemplars Provide Aspirational Stories and a Sense of What "the Best" Can Be

Your Guidelines Animate Your Philosophy and Exemplars in Your Own Direction-Giving

Position Yourself as a Key Direction-Giver in the Story of Your Group

A Process of Residues Helps Us Decide on Whom We Will Focus Our Attention

Take Stock of the Credentials You Have and What Can You Do to Help Your Group Thrive

Recurring Types of Situations Can Help Put Context to Your Direction-Giving Preparations

Some Advice That May Be Useful as You Position Yourself

In Conclusion

6. Figure Out How to Communicate Effectively
Communication Is a Tool Used to Transfer Information and a Process for Making Meaning

Accurate Transfer of Information Requires Fidelity

Making Meaning Involves Finding the Utility Involved

People Communicate for Purposes of Inquiry, to Influence Others, and to Build Relationships

Inquiry Is the Imperative to Make Sense of What is Happening to You

Influence Is the Imperative to Get Others to See Things Your Way or to Do What You Want

Relationship Is the Imperative to Have Social Contact and to Get Along With Others

Attaining a Symbolic Convergence of Terms, Meanings, and Stories Requires Effort and Skill

Create Messages That Gain Attention, Enhance Understanding, and Encourage Identification

Receive Messages Reflectively, Oriented Toward Understanding Ideas and Finding Utility

In Conclusion

7. Shape Effective Experiences and Expectations for Citizenship in Your Group
Help Shape Stories of Effective Group Experiences for Your Group

A Human Experience Is a Constructed Understanding of What Is Meaningful

Stories of Past, Present, and Future Experiences Are How You Give Direction to Your Group

Constitutive Rhetoric Is How You Co-Construct a Sense of Your Group and of "The Others"

Help Shape Stories of Experience That Create an Expectation of Citizenship in Your Group

Citizenship Experience Stories Stimulate Participation, Criticism, and Reasoned Conformity

How Groups Perpetuate Themselves Shapes the Experience of Citizen-Members

Play Your Part as a Citizen of Your Group

In Conclusion

8. Help Shape the Story of Your Organization, Team, or Community
You Can Use Stories to Unite Your Group and to Give It Direction

Find Coherence in Co-Constructed Stories of Your Group's Experience

Narrative Provides a Potent Tool for Shaping Effective Group Experiences

Seek and Shape Stories That Show or Start Something Special in Your Group

Making Accounts, Sensemaking, and Defining Stories Are Foundations of Narrative

Characterization, Ideographs, and Rhetorical Depiction Are Potent Forms of Narrative

The Master Narrative Is the Overarching Story of Your Group's Experience

Create Coherence in Memorable Messages, Critical Incidents, Teaching Tales, and Nuggets

Figure Out What Others Will Hear in the Experience Stories You Tell and Help Shape

In Conclusion

9. Develop the Framing Skills Needed by Every Direction-Giver
Framing Is Basic to All Communication: Your Frames Shape Your Direction-Giving Accounts

Frames, Like Definitions, Are How We Attach Meaning to Things

Frames Show Motives, Shape Experience, and Provide Authoritative Weight in the Group

Develop the Framing Skills You Need to Use to Be Effective as a Direction-Giver

Naming, Framing, and Blaming Are Basic Aspects of the Process for Making Meanings

Frame Your Group's Purgatory Puddle, Way/Process, Vision/Outcome, and Savior Complex

Claiming and Taming Are Elaborated Constructions of What Is Meaningful

In Conclusion

10. Leadership Vision Can Be a Crisis-Based Direction-Giving Story
Do You Need Vision as a Planning Tool or Do You Need a Vision that Transforms Your Group?

Are You Prepared to Give Direction During a Crisis?

Vision/Outcome Represents All Your Group Products and Purposes

Conceptions of Vision Range From Low- to High-Intensity Forms of Direction-Giving Action

What Is the Relationship Between a Vision and a Direction-Giver?

Crisis Is Different Than the Typical Pitfalls and Problems You Face in Every Group

Rhetorical Resources (and Your Responses Should) Vary Across the Circumstances of Crisis

You Can Prepare for Crisis That Resemble Fires Needing to Be Put Out

You Should Understand Direction-Giving Communications During Transformative Crisis

Do Not Misuse Crisis: From Mistakes to Faux Crisis, False Pretenses, and Manipulations

In Conclusion


Perfect level for my 200 level course -- Psychology of success

Dr Beth Seebach
Psychology Dept, Saint Mary'S Univ Of Minnesota
December 9, 2015

This is exactly the book I was looking for, as I am teaching leadership communication in the context of a nonprofit management degree program and a change management degree program. The citizenship angle fits perfectly with the nonprofit/social change emphasis of our school and the course.

Ms Bonnie McEwan
Milano School of Management & Policy, New School University
March 5, 2010

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