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The Arts of Leadership$
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Keith Grint

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780199244898

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199244898.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 19 October 2021

Introduction: The Arts of Leadership

Introduction: The Arts of Leadership

(p.1) 1 Introduction: The Arts of Leadership
The Arts of Leadership


Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses four approaches in understanding leadership—trait approaches, contingency approaches, situational approaches, and the constitutive approaches. It defines leadership as an art, or rather an array of arts—more than a science—which might account for the four paradoxes that have bedevilled its understanding: it appears to have more to do with invention than analysis, despite claims to the contrary; it appears to operate on the basis of indeterminacy whilst claiming to be deterministic; it appears to be rooted in irony rather than truth; it usually resorts to a constructed identity but claims a reflective identity. The chapter then explores these four paradoxes and suggests how people might adopt the metaphors of art as a way of understanding them better. It notes that leadership is critically concerned with establishing and coordinating the relationships between four things: identity, strategic vision, organizational tactics, and persuasive communication.

Keywords:   leadership, trait approaches, contingency approaches, situational approaches, constitutive approaches, identity, strategic vision, organizational tactics, persuasive communication

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