Faculty Publications and Presentations

Publication Date

January 1997

Document Type



Written by Brian Satterlee while he worked as Dean of Adult and Continuing Education at Warner Southern College, FL.


Several key concepts shed light on the traits and processes of leadership in educational settings. First, the term leadership can be understood as the act of persuading others to set aside individual concerns and pursue a common goal, with communication representing a key ability of leaders. The communication Model provides a useful, open systems approach to analyzing the effectiveness of leader-constituent communications. In the model, the inputs of source and receiver are converted by the process of message and channel into an effective or ineffective communication process. They systemic approach to the study of leadership maintains that inputs are resources available to leaders and constituents, throughputs are processes by which these resources are converted into outcomes, and feedback is the communication of outcomes assessment back into the system. Another key concept of leadership is the vision community, formed when leaders have a vision and create a desire in others to make the vision a reality, while to be successful in the 21st century, leaders will need to acquire new skills related to systems thinking, change management, and team building. College leaders should also be aware of the development of leadership theory, including classical, behavioral, and modern approaches. Finally, while Total Quality Management has been implemented by some educational leaders, these efforts have been less successful than expected, primarily because top administrators often exempt themselves from the processes.