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A critical literature review on micropolitics power and three paradigms of educational leadership Wong, Valerie Oct 31, 2008

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A CRITICAL LITERATURE REVIEW ON MICROPOLITICS, POWER AND THREE PARADIGMS OF EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP by Valerie Wong A GRADUATING PAPER SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF EDUCATION In The Faculty of Graduate Studies (Educational Administration and Leadership) THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA (Vancouver) October 2008 © Valerie Wong, 2008 ABSTRACT This paper discusses the role of micropolitics and power within an educational organization. Transactional, transformational and servant-leadership paradigms are reviewed and critiqued with relation to micropolitical strategies and Reed's faces of power (2000). An analysis on disguised or hidden power strategies within the servant-leadership paradigm is provided. 11 TABLE OF CONTENTS Abstract .............................................................................................................................. ii Table of Contents .............................................................................................................. iii List of Tables ..................................................................................................................... iv List of Figures ................................................................................................................... v Acknowledgements ........................................................................................................... vi Introduction ....................................................................................................................... 1 Purpose and Organization ......................................................................................... ...... .... . 3 Review of Micropolitics ..................................................................................................... 4 Administrative Micropolitical Strategies ................................... ....... ....... ..... .... ... ............... .4 Teachers' Micropolitical Strategies ..................................................................................... 7 Personal Reflections of Micropolitics .............................................................. 8 Exerting Power Through Control of Behaviour .......................................... . ........ 9 Summary .. .... ......................................................................................... 9 Review of Power Within Schools ................................................................................... 10 Top-Down Power. ........................................................................................................ . 10 Zero-Sum Power ....................... . ..... . ..................................................... . 11 Dynamic Power ........... ... ... ...... .......... ....... ..... . ........................................ 11 Power as Negotiation ............................................................................... 12 Surveillance Power ................................................................................. 12 Power in Knowledge or Resources ....................................... . ..................... . . 13 Reed's Three Faces of Power. .................................................................... 14 Summary: Power in Education ............................. ... ........................................ 16 Review of Educational Leadership ............................................................. 17 Transactional Leadership ........................................................................... 20 Transformational Leadership ...................................................................... 21 Basic Underpinnings of Servant-Leadership ................................................. 21 Characteristics of Servant Leaders ............................................................... .23 Differences Between Servant-Leadership and Other Leadership Paradigms ............... 23 Covert or Explicit Power in Servant-Leadership ............................................ 24 Moral and Ethical Questions Regarding Servant-Leadership ......................... . ....... 25 Inverting the Power Lens in Servant-Leadership Or Is It? - A Critique ............... 26 Service ................................................................................................ 26 Viewing Conflict .................................................................................... 27 Latent Power Disguised as Empowerment ...................................................... .28 Third Face of Power .............................................................. . ......... . . .. . .. . 28 Questions Regarding Servant Leadership ..................................................................... 29 Conclusion ........................................................................................................................ 30 References ........................................................................................................................ 33 1ll LIST OF TABLES Table 1 Summary of Hoyle's Five Micropolitical Strategies .................................... ......... 5 IV LIST OF FIGURES Figure 1 Summary of Reed's First Face of Power, Leadership Approaches and Micropolitical Strategies ............................................................................ 14 Figure 2 Summary of Reed's Second Face of Power, Leadership Approaches and Micropolitical Strategies ......................................... .... .......... . . . . . ... . . . .... . .. .. 15 Figure 3 Summary of Reed's Third Face of Power, Leadership Approaches and Micropolitical Strategies .......... .................................... . ............... . ....... . .... 16 Figure 4 Broad Overview of Micropolitics, Power and Educational Leadership .................. . . . 19 Figure 5 Summary of Power, Leadership Paradigms and Micropolitical Strategies ..... . .. .. ....... . 20 v ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I offer my enduring gratitude to the faculty, staff and my fellow students at the UBC, who have gifted me in knowledge in the area regarding educational administration and leadership. lowe particular thanks to Dr. T. Webb, whose penetrating questions, critical eye and depth of knowledge helped me to write this paper professionally and thoroughly. I also thank Dr. W. Poole for providing the ground work of the post-modernist perspective revolving issues of power. Special thanks are owed to my parents and siblings, whose have supported me throughout my years of education, both morally and financially. VI Introduction / Through TOC opportunities in various schools, I encountered both leaders whom I admired, and whom, I felt, could have been more effective. I learned to respect those who led not by words, but by action. I desired to be a leader who maintained her calm when surrounded by chaos. I aspired to lead with encouragement and warmth, and welcome staff and students into my office, demonstrating to them where my priorities lie. Finally, I wanted to be an administrator who was organized and who could be trusted to consistently meet deadlines. These somewhat superficial, simplistic ideals have now formulated into a more grounded definition of what type of leader I hope to be; however, the foundational stones had been set at the beginning of my teaching career years ago. The process of thinking through the various leadership styles I had seen in schools, and desiring to become one solidified my decision to grow academically and professionally at U.B.C. By April 2007, I applied and was accepted into the Masters of Education program, specializing in Educational Administration and Leadership (EADM). In the last year, and under the care, guidance and prompting of my EADM professors, I was quickly swept in the academia of professional learning and growth. The past fourteen months have immersed me in countless journals, discussions and papers. Slowly, but surely, I have formulated what the concept of being a leader of a school could be for me. Throughout my studies, I realized obtaining my Master's degree would be another stepping stone towards my eventual, long-term goal of being an administrator in a school system, be it private or public. It was then, with surprise, that the opportunity of being a middle school (MS) vice-principal presented itself to me. The current MS vice-principal 1 was amazmg. She was detailed, reliable, experienced and passionate. She was thoughtful and compassionate. She was creative and a wonderful social organizer. Unfortunately, she had no desire to pursue further education, and her passion lay in educational consulting. She also realized that although she was good at administering, she did not enjoy administration. She had mentioned to me how often she felt drained and exhausted, void of joy in the tasks she was required to perform. She was burnt-out and strongly felt the pull back to the classroom full time. Hence, after being vice-principal for two years, she handed in her resignation letter to the board. My school was need of a replacement. The principal did not want to hire externally, and that left two staff members who were pursuing their Masters degrees in the MS department. At the time, most staff members had no idea of the situation and so it was to my surprise when the principal approached me and asked if I would be interested in interviewing for the position. She spoke candidly with me and explained that she thought I was a promising candidate and to think seriously about it. I had my doubts and struggled the following two weeks. I finally came to understand it as a win-win situation - I could go for the interview and if it were meant to be that I grow professionally this way at this time, I would get it. If not, I would be happy continuing being grade 7 homeroom. I was offered the MS vice-principal position an hour after I completed the interview. Things were confirmed. Where am I now? Both teaching and administration, I feel, are worthy of my energy, effort, and enthusiasm. As I finish my Masters degree, my final graduating paper has come to evolve with the education I have received. Through the expertise of many professors, I learned about a few of the major different leadership paradigms, as well as a 2 paradigm less documented - servant leadership. I also had the opportunity to work with my supervisor on the topic of micro politics and power, and despite not being able to take a course on these issues, I found them fascinating. As a result, I decided to write a critical literature review, drawing from the research of others, especially since I did not know much about these aspects of education prior to my own research. Purpose and Organization The problem this paper will address is how servant-leadership fits under the micropolitical umbrella and how power operates in this particular leadership paradigm. I also critique the servant leadership paradigm and the micropolitical strategies which may be at work within this paradigm. In this paper, I first provide a review of micropolitics. I use both Hoyle (1986) and Bondy and Ross (1992) and discuss their articles. Micropolitical strategies used by people in power and teachers within school organizations will be introduced. Secondly, I review some of the different types of power as presented in Bacharach and Mundell (1993) and the three different faces of power (Reed, 2000) and summarize with visual schematics the link between micropolitical strategies and Reed's power faces. These visual graphics help synthesize my work in order to assist readers in understanding my critique. Next, I critique three different paradigms of leadership: transactional, transformational, and servant-leadership and their ties to issues regarding micropolitics and power. The underpinnings of each paradigm will be presented. I also provide a summary visual schematic showing how micropolitics, power and educational leadership can be conceptually linked. Finally, I conclude by asking some questions I have of the servant-leadership paradigm that still are unanswered for me. 3 Through reading this paper, I hope more insight can be provided to readers who want to know about servant-leadership and to present the micropolitical power strategies which can sometimes be hidden or disguised within the servant-leadership paradigm. I hope my critical review also assists current educational leaders, and those aspiring to be educational leaders, better understand power and politics in schools. Review of Micropolitics Micropolitics examine the relationships and interests within school systems and examines the use of formal or informal power by individuals or groups to achieve their goals, influence others, and protect themselves (Blase, 1991). Micropolitics manifests with individual's personal agendas, relationships between people, power, subjective beliefs, personal biases and ideas, and strategies and resources people use to further their interests and perhaps to "influence one another on an interpersonal level" (Greenfield, 1991). Micropolitics within an organization is a series of "political negotiations" (Bacharach and Mundell, 1993) where power differentials between people exist due to disparity related to goals, beliefs, values, desires or personal philosophies (Blase, 1991). Micropolitical strategies are used to influence, solve a problem or conflict, or produce a change. I next discuss some prominent strategies used in micropolitical negotiations. Administrative Micropoliticai Strategies Hoyle (1982) presented five major micropolitical strategies that can be used by administration or people in power to exert influence and control. Table 1 summarizes these strategies before a detailed explanation of each is provided. 4 Table 1: Summary of Hoyle's Five Micropolitical Strategies Divide and Rule Two types: 1) A void full staff meeting discussions; rather, talks with individual members are conducted 2) Sets adversaries against one another and administrator then appears to resolve or be mediator of staff Cooptation Appointing of specific staff members based on their perspective views Displacement Intentionally conceals information from staff members to pass a personal agenda Controlling Information Withholding or acquiring of information to staff members Control of Meetings Selecting participants, agenda, format and time of meetings Divide and rule. The first strategy is divide and rule. This micropolitical strategy may manifest itself through administration or the people in power passing agenda items through key staff members. By doing this, a full discussion involving all the staff members would not be needed. This allows for individual mediation and compromise to occur, potentially eliminating a collaborative action as a group. For instance, an administrator may first passes an idea through the administrative team before it is discussed at a larger scale with staff members. Only after a thorough discussion and listening to voices from heads in departments, might the decision be made to present it to staff. If an idea is thought to be accepted by many of the more dominant stakeholders, the strategy will broaden to potentially incorporate teachers who hold noticeable power among the staff and to talk to them about their thoughts. Often the teachers who are verbally adept and contribute actively in staff meeting discussions are consulted before the idea is presented at a staff meeting. This methodological means of micropolitics almost guarantees that by the time the initiative is presented to the entire staff and board for the first time, consensus will have already been had. 5 Another aspect of the divide and rule strategy is where administration sets up adversaries against one another during a group meeting. This requires administration to be listeners, understanding the personal differences of staff members. By creating an environment of conflicts, the administration can thus maintain the appearance of being a facilitator and mediator of the staff. Is ethics being breached or is it simply a means of creating efficiency within the system? I would argue that this micropolitical strategy is effective and efficient. By gaining the opinions of the important stakeholders first, a person in a power position is able to have an opportunity to reflect, think and re-assess their views and the direction they intend to go. Listening to the opinions and perspectives of key staff members first streamlines the process before presenting the idea to an entire staff. I would like to also suggest here that not all staff members want to be a part of the decision making process all the time, and as such, the wisdom in being an effective leader is the ability to discern which decisions should be collaborative, and which should be made by a few key people. Cooptation and displacement. The second micropolitical strategy is cooptation where administration may appoint certain staff members based on the knowledge that they maintain a certain view. This can be to genuinely have a representative speaker for that issue, or it may be more subversive where a staff member may be appointed for pretense of that perspective, but not truly to represent an alternative voice. The third micropolitical strategy is displacement, where administration may deliberately hide an issue or specific information in order for the support of an alternative issue. The intentional concealment may occur to allow the alternative issue, which is what administration may want to pass, to seem desirable. 6 Controlling information and meetings. Controlling information is the fourth strategy which may be exercised. The means by which information can be acquired or withheld by staff members allow administration to be able to exert or influence their control. If certain information is never provided or given to staff members, or if the information is difficult to access, people in power distill and channel only what they want others to obtain. The last strategy is the control of meetings. Administration has the ability and power to choose who participants of certain decisions involve, the agenda of the meetings, the format and meeting formalities, as well as to what extent participants are allowed to contribute. In this strategy, people in authority dictate the structures around the decision making process, and as such, exert control and influence subtly. Teachers ' Micropolitical Strategies On the other hand, teachers also exercise micropolitical strategies, sometimes in opposition to certain administrative practices. Bondy and Ross (1992) discuss means by which teachers can gain and maintain professional power within a school context. Listening and observing others provide teachers a broader perspective of strategic power players on staff, as well as a rounded awareness of how other people feel and think. Listening and observing allow teachers to assess situations of policies, procedures, history, implicit values and hidden agendas (Bondy and Ross, 1992). The relationships and informal networks teachers develop can increase their personal influence of their colleagues. By understanding such information, power is gained. This particular strategy allows for teachers to understand the political arena involving the varying individual ideologies. Learning to communicate effectively is also another micropolitical strategy teachers can develop. Presenting ideals in terms of another person's perspective allow for 7 administration to understand, accept and negotiate issues. Participating in professional networks and building support groups which share common values is another effective strategy to further interests and gain influence within a school setting. Here, interests become pursued with others in what Hoyle (1982) and Bacharach and Mundell (1993) would call interest groups. Interest groups are created in hopes of collectively being able to negotiate and influence more effectively than had it been done individually. Together, players involved in the interest group strategically pool resources together in the hopes of exercising political significance. These people would be motivated by common preferences or purposes, and as such, attempt to achieve their common objectives (Bacharach and Mundell, 1993). Personal Reflections of Micropolitics Thus, micropolitics can also involve cooperation and how people build support among themselves to achieve their ends (Blase, 1991). However, micropolitics is also about conflict and how people compete with each other to get what they want, including the usage of manipulation or coercion - another face of power. My personal interest of micropolitics stem from how people use power to get hold of resources. For instance, might they negotiate with people, or gain favour with the administration? In my own experience, teachers exercise a variety of micropolitical strategies to get what they want or to achieve their own goals. Avoidance of tasks, sabotage of new curricula, refusal of participating in a ministry-dictated initiative, defying rules, bargaining with administration are just naming a few. It is also fascinating to understand what people in leadership positions may do to gain and hold power. All these facets are examples of micropolitics. 8 Exerting Power Through Control of Behaviour An aspect not mentioned by Hoyle is the micropolitical strategy of exerting power through the control of behaviour. Control can occur with simple acts of verbal praise or, in contrast, blocking, stifling or ignoring those who actions which are not consistent with what is desired by administration (Malen, 1994). Administration can promote certain behaviours through this control mechanism (which will be discussed in more depth in the following section "Review of Power"). In this manner, the manipulation of professional activity can be managed. The issue of control can be seen as a means of a certain interest group getting what they want by exerting power. Summary I believe it is important to understand that in education, conflict and resistance are always present. The very nature of education is about people, and with people, there comes politics. It is important to understand that education and leadership in education though, cannot be simply about masking, avoiding or suppressing conflict and resistance. As an educational leader, the movement away from viewing conflict and resistance as something to be managed to viewing conflict as an opportunity for growth and change is crucial for the success of an organization. As Burbules articulates, listen to the voices of conflict and resistance can make one aware of, and call into question, the "power relations of authoritarianism, hegemony and bureaucracy" (Burbules, 1986). The bureaucratic nature of the education system, with its focus on expediency, efficiency, standardization, control and specialization, has its downside. As a result, if teacher resistance and conflict speak out towards a potential positive movement to change the status quo, resistance as such should be embraced by educational leaders, not avoided. Resistance and conflict defined in this matter, can move and shake power relations and hierarchies. This, in 9 progressive moderation, can promote educational values and evoke change for the better. The assumed privileges of particular roles, and restrictive, rigid systems of hierarchy can be the creation of educational demise. As aforementioned, Blase (1991) summarizes that micropolitics refers to the use of formal and informal power by individuals and groups "to achieve their goals in organizational settings" (p. 9). It is necessary then, to understand what these different types of power are, as well as to comprehend how power directly affects the type of micropolitical strategies used within the organization. Review of Power Within Schools Everything within a school system is related to power. Because power is such a interwoven concept throughout organizations, there are several different conceptualizations of power. Bacharach and Mundell (1993) present: top-down approach, a zero-sum game, empowerment approach, transactional approach and surveillance power to name only a few. Power relations often begin with a state of conflicting interests or competing goals (Bacharach and Mundell, 1993). These competing goals stem from a conflict or struggle between different players within an organization. Hence, people's differing understandings of power result in different approaches. Top-Down Power In the top-down approach of exercising power, there is the use of authority or influence (Blase and Anderson, 1995). People who exercise power in this manner can attempt to control the way people act, think and feel based on their position. Sovereign power, defined as power residing in a person or a position (Hatch, 2006), can be understood as a modernist perspective. From this perspective, the concept of power being 10 held by individual members and the authority, influence and/or control actually existing within them can lead to power imbalances within an organization. Social status, hierarchy and positional power can become a basis for discontent. This perceived imbalance of power can create tension and dissention among staff members. Because power is viewed in such a regard, power-over situations are common with this approach. Authority is associated with privilege (Burbules, 1986) and due to this privileged status, power can be wielded. People at the top of the hierarchy also possess the ability also to withhold or silence information from others in this power approach. Zero-Sum Power Other people believe in the zero-sum (Blase and Anderson, 1995) power grid where one person or group having power will equate to another person or group with consequently diminished power. This type of understanding of power creates people holding on to status and position in fear of letting go and having their authority taken away from them. This type of power segregates, differentiates, marginalizes and excludes (Sackney, Walker and Mitchell, 1999). Dynamic Power An alternative view of power being a zero-sum grid is the belief that power is dynamic, fluid and all around. People in power freely provide opportunities for others to gain power, and not fear oflosing it. Power, in such a perspective, is seen to not reside in people or positions but on the contrary, exists only in relationships. Therefore, power shifts all the time (Hatch, 2006). This perspective on power stems from the post-modernist approach where power is seen as expandable and sharing power with one person does not diminish another person's power. Most people who view power in this regard tend to use the empowerment approach, also known as power-with. Leadership is 11 exercised by many, if not all, members of the organization and people are empowered to have power over themselves. Power is not given by anyone person, but rather, means of allowing power to flow and be potentially gained by any. I would like to here distinguish that empowerment is not someone in power letting or giving another person power, but rather allowing for the person to have means of attaining power on their own. This might take the form of providing the channels, facilities or knowledge for that individual to potentially gain power. Empowerment mobilizes individuals with the energy, resources, strength, freedom or capacity to act (Blase and Anderson, 1995). Power here is derived from legitimacy and not from an individual act of dominance. The power to motivate and influence others in order to achieve group success is the goal (Sergiovanni, 1992). Power as Negotiation Another approach of power is conceptualizing power as a transaction or exchange. In this manner, power is a negotiation where people give in order to receive in return. Transactional power relies heavily on contractual conditions, discipline and rewards (Blase and Anderson, 1995). In this fashion, leaders who adopt this type of power tend to exercise the formalization of rules and principals and exert their power based on these foundations. I would argue that such an approach to exercising power results in an authoritarian, managerial work environment where there is decreased opportunity or desire to participate and extend beyond individual desires. The global picture of an organization can often be lost or distorted in the midst of political bargaining (Blase and Anderson, 1995). Surveillance Power In surveillance power, people are kept accountable via means of testing or evaluation (Bacharach and Mundell, 1993). This type of power may require subordinates 12 to prove what they have accomplished or done. Evaluations can be a means of exerting control and power. For instance, teacher evaluations have sections where recommendations are provided by administrators. Simply through the written suggestions by people in power, teachers understand what is expected of them and what is encouraged to be done as a teaching professional. In addition, informal verbal praise or recognition can even be a form of control and power where teachers learn to appreciate what the people in power like, and in turn, dislike. Sometimes, surveillance power may even occur as peer-monitoring, where people have been trained to monitor one another such that surveillance does not even need to be conducted from the people in authority. Such a form of power can be understood to be indirect (Blase and Anderson, 1995). Power in Knowledge or Resources Finally, I believe a powerful type of informal power exists with the possession of certain knowledge or resources. Foucault (1980) binds the concepts of power, surveillance, and knowledge together intricately. I would argue here that knowledge is a source of power and that power can also come from knowledge. Within organizations, the possession of knowledge can present an individual a considerable amount of influence. Educational systems and organizations can become political through the uneven control of resources - an unevenness that stems from specialized functions (Dahl, 1984). An example of hierarchical power can stem from the issue of specialization. For instance, in the area of technology, computer specialists can often be in positions of power, people who are respected and constantly in demand. Often, such specialists have control over budget and ordering; anything needed in the area of software, hardware or installations are passed through these people. Reed's Three Faces of Power 13 Firstface. As Reed (2000) would define it, specialists hold the first face of power: overt control. This type of power in an individual is authorized power where one possesses complete autonomy from the position they have in the hierarchy. In overt control and power, sovereign power, generally localized, exists in the organization. A sense of order and authority resides and power-over type strategies are exercised. In the first face of power, there are clear, recognizable issues and power is understood as certain interest groups who win and others, consequently, who lose. Here, in contrast, lack of power often results from individual choice not to disrupt or ruffle the hierarchy, perhaps fearing retribution or punishment. Figure 1 below provides a summary of Reed's first face of power, tying in the leadership approaches and micropolitical strategies which may be used in this face of power. Figure 1: Summary of Reed's First Face of Power, Leadership Approaches and Micropolitical Strategies Reed's Face of Power Potential Leadership Micropolitical Strategies Approaches Which May Be Used First Face: • Power Over • Control meetings Overt Control • Top Down • Displacement • Zero-Sum • Control information Second face . The second face of power is described by Reed as being covert. Some power-with strategies are used where certain interest groups are invited to bring up issues and grievances to be discussed in an open environment. There is a strong promotion of policies to be discussed by the people, and advocacy groups create professional, localized leadership. However, certain discussion items are screened by people in power and thus, never make it to the discussion table. In addition, lack of 14 resources (e.g. time, money or staft) provides a barrier to making systematic change always possible. Figure 2 below provides a summary of Reed's second face of power, tying in the leadership approaches and micropolitical strategies which may be used in this face of power. Here, I suggest a link between empowerment and power-with and Reed's covert face of power. While covert power empowers people into mobilization, discussion and collaboration, biases and values within a system impact the effectiveness of these decision making processes. On the forefront, the act of allowing varying interests and grievances to be articulated is overpowered by overt processes such as negative decision making (avoidance or silencing) or an underlying acceptance of values and rituals within an organization. Figure 2: Summary of Reed's Second Face of Power, Leadership Approaches and Micropolitical Strategies Reed's Face of Power Potential Leadership Micropolitical Strategies Approaches Which May Be Used Second Face: • Power-with • Listen and observe Covert • Empowerment • Interest groups • Communicate Third/ace. Malen (1994) discusses the third face of power to be the invisible face where power shapes aspirations and defines interests through subtle forces. This socialization or indoctrination is undetected by the individuals who are control, but can be understood as the most insidious use of power. This is defined as Reed's third face of power: latent (2000). In this face of power, people internalize the status quo. Powerholders shape the consciousness and awareness of issues through secrecy or 15 information control. People in power prevent conflict from occurring at all by ensuring a lack of awareness and critical consciousness. Figure 3 below provides a summary of Reed's third face of power, tying in the leadership approaches and micropolitical strategies which may be used in this face of power. Figure 3: Summary of Reed's Third Face of Power, Leadership Approaches and Micropolitical Strategies Reed's Face of Power Potential Leadership Micropolitical Strategies Approaches Which May Be Used Third Face: • Latent • Control of behaviour Latent • Surveillance • Divide and rule • Cooptation In the process of leaders attempting to manage values for an organization, the management of individual employees' values, beliefs and assumptions also become managed (Alvesson and Willmott, 2002). The manifestation of an unconscious acceptance among employees becomes the ultimate use of power and ensuring that people conform. Often players in this face of power do not recognize what is occurring. The power in this face is the local knowledge and monitoring of policy implementation and enforcement, and can be described as being the most dangerous and ultimate type of power. Summary: Power in Education As Nicholas Burbules articulates (1986), power and power struggles often are rooted in deeper issues of conflict between human interests, and because of the educational hierarchy which is entrenched in our system, power and struggles relating to power will be inevitable. Power dynamics occur as different interest groups try to impose 16 their views on others with influence, or, if interest groups try to persuade those in authority (Bacharach and Mundell, 1993). I believe the importance of a leader in a school is to first of all, understand that power struggles will occur. Second of all, it is crucial for leaders to realize that if or when a resolution of a problem is reached, the underlying importance is to determine what the deeper, disguised conflict suggested. It is important also to understand that styles of leadership are directly related to how an administrator views power. Where they lie on the power-over and power-with continuum will influence their leadership approach, be it authoritarian or collaborative (Foster, 1982; Brunner 2002). Brunner (2002) discusses conceptions of power and the "enactment of power in decision making". She indicates that depending on how one conceives power to be, manifestations of that conception become apparent. For instance, a person who conceives power to be authoritative, controlling and domineering (power-over) would likely use power to control and be in charge, consequently having difficulty collaborating with others. On the contrary, a person who conceives power to be collective (power-with) is more predisposed to work with others and consider the views of others. Below, then, are three major paradigms of educational leadership which will be introduced, based on how power is understood by the person in authority. Review of Educational Leadership Having discussed power and micropolitics, it is important to now examine three popular, though different, leadership paradigms and to re-examine how with each paradigm, power is exercised with them. The three paradigms are: transactional leadership, transformational leadership and servant-leadership. As Blase and Anderson (1995) discuss in "The Micropolitics of Educational Leadership", power in relationships to others can be viewed through three different lenses 17 or faces (Reed, 2000): power-over, power-through and power-with. In addition, there may also be the power lens of latent power or surveillance, as Reed (2000) suggests. Regardless, within these lenses, the three paradigms of leadership also exist, alongside certain micropolitical strategies. It is important to point out here that the three paradigms and lenses exist on a continuum where there is a range on the spectrum between these listed extremes. It should also be noted that these paradigms and lenses also seldom are found in their pure form, and as such, should be recognized not as rigid categories, but rather as models to springboard a discussion. In Figure 4 on the following page, a broad overview is presented, showing how educational leadership, power and micropolitics are encompassed one within the other. Following, Figure 5 summarizes, in chart form, how power lenses, educational leadership paradigms and micropolitical strategies can be understood in relation to one another. 18 Figure 4: Broad Overview of Micropolitics, Power and Educational Leadership Interest Groups Power Apporoaches • Top-down • Zero-sum • Dynamic • Negotiation • Surveillance • Knowledge • Conflict • People Educational Leadership Powe1 ~cro olitio 19 • Overt • Covert • Latent • Strategies Figure 5: Summary of Power, Leadership Paradigms and Micropolitical Strategies Power Lenses, Faces of Power (Reed, 2000) or Power The First Face of Power has some characteristics which exemplify power types like: • Power Over • Top Down • Zero-Sum Educational Leadership Paradigms In the fIrst face of power, an educational leadership paradigm which shares some of those characteristics might be: Transactional Micropolitical Strategies Which May Be Used • Control meetings • Displacement • Control information * Micropolitics, power, leadership paradigms and strategies are never clearly black and white but rather, shades of grey. These aspects are what happen within a school all the time. * In this visual schematic, the lines within the chart are blurry rather than distinctive (hence represented by dotted lines), indicating that within each box lie a continuum. * An extension to this summary: is there a row 4? If so, what would it consist of? Now, I will briefly discuss the three different educational leadership paradigms and their underpinnings. Transactional Leadership In the transactional leadership paradigm, leaders are largely managerial. Power-over employees is exercised and power can be described as being overt (Reed, 2000). In transactional leadership, specific goals, work skills and knowledge to accomplish those 20 goals (generally short-term) are emphasized. Various reward-punishment relationships are built and performances are managed and observed. Transactional leaders are typically concerned about the bottom-line and rely heavily on contracts and discipline structures. In a purely transactional leadership paradigm, the purpose and vision, long term values, and human morality can be compromised, lost or ignored. The power relation in a transactional leadership style is top-down; transactional leaders are more concerned with the maintenance of status quo. Conflict is largely viewed as a problem needing to be managed, and in the face of confrontation, negotiations and rules are set in place by the leaders in order to diffuse such occurrences. Transformational Leadership In contrast, transformational leadership can be seen as exercising a power-through and power-with model. Transformative leadership places a great emphasis on intellectual capacity and creativity. Transformative leaders tend to encourage and emphasize abstractness, ambiguity, creativity and vision (as opposed to goals). Transformative leadership tends to broaden and elevate the interests of their followers, generating awareness and acceptance of the purposes and mission of the group. This style of leadership also stirs followers to look beyond their own self interest to the good of others. These leaders use charisma, vision, courage, inspiration, intellectual stimulation, and concern for individual. The power relation in a transformational leadership style is shared and conflict is welcome; disagreements are viewed more as an opportunity to discuss possibilities with no fear of retribution by staff members. Basic Underpinnings of Servant Leadership A servant-leader, first coined by Robert Greenleaf, former director of management research at AT&T (Spears, 1998) describes a leader who is often not formally recognized 21 as such. When someone, at any level within an organization, leads simply by virtue of meeting the needs of his or her team, he or she is described as a servant-leader (Sendjaya and Sarros, 2002). In many ways, servant leadership is a form of democratic leadership, as the whole team tends to be involved in decision-making (Sendjaya and Sarros, 2002) and leader is a facilitator (Smith, Montagno and Kuzmenko, 2004). Supporters of the servant leadership model suggest it is a unique model where leaders achieve power on the basis of their values and ideals (Spears, 1998). Greenleafhimself, described his then, new approach to leadership as being based on the writings of Hermann Hesse, the German-Swiss Nobel Prize-winning author (Greenleaf, 1977). One of Hesse's books, "Journey to the East", made an enormous impression on Greenleaf, and became the basis of his leadership model. Greenleaf described his discovery of servant-leadership in a 1984 talk: "Journey to the East is an account of a mythical journey by a band of men, but especially of Leo, who accompanies the party as the servant who does the menial chores, but who also sustains them with his spirit and his song. All goes well with the journey until one day Leo disappears. Then the group falls apart in disarray, and the journey is abandoned. They cannot make it without the servant Leo. Much later, Leo is discovered as the titular head of the order, being its sole guiding spirit, a great and noble leader. The greatest leader is seen as servant first because that is what he is deep down inside. Leadership is bestowed on the person who is, by nature, a true servant. Leadership is something given or assumed, that could be taken away. Leo's servant nature was the real person, not bestowed, not assumed, and not to be taken away. Leo was servant first." 22 Characteristics of Servant Leaders Servant Leadership has an emphasis on a sense of community, empowerment, shared authority, and relational power (Spears, 1998; Sendjaya and Sarros, 2002). Characteristics of servant-leaders are ones who listen, empathize, are stewards, build community, and are committed to the growth of people (Greenleaf, 1977). According to Greenleaf (1977), servant leaders are ones who put other people above their own needs, aspirations and interests. Their chief goal is to serve others, as opposed to being a leader or an authority figure (Spears, 1998). Servant leaders also view themselves as stewards (Spears, 1998; Greenleaf, 1977). The word "steward" is derived from the Greek word "oikonomia" which loosely translates to the idea of a house manager (Spears, 1998). A steward in the Middle Ages was entrusted with the responsibility of managing the business affairs of a household and was given responsibility over money, property, goods and other servants. Today, the concept of a steward is one who is willing to be accountable for the well-being of a larger community by operating in service to others. Servant leaders regard their followers as being "people who have been entrusted to them to be elevated to their better selves and to be what they are capable of becoming" (Sendjaya and Sarros, 2002). Differences Between Servant-Leadership and Other Leadership Paradigms Servant-leadership is different from other paradigms ofleadership because servant leadership recognizes the leader's social responsibility to serve people (Sendjaya and Sarros,2002). In addition, servant leaders are fully dedicated to their followers' needs and interests, as opposed to their own or the organization's (Spears, 1998). Servant 23 leaders are the promoters of others. They start with the feeling of desiring to serve, and consequently, result in a conscious choice to aspire to lead (Greenleaf, 1977). Servant-leadership also differs from other paradigms because servant-leaders are not seen as managers or enforcers of rules and regulations which might result in rewards or punishment (Batten, 1998). Servant-leaders trust, visibly appreciate, value and encourage others (Greenleaf, 1998). Servant-leadership also emphasizes the idea of shared leadership in an organization (Greenleaf, 1998; Spears, 1998). There is a focus on everyone following one vision, rather than a person. The belief is that when people work towards realizing a goal they personally believe in, their internal motivation becomes the reason for their achievement, rather than extrinsic factors (Lad and Luechauer, 1998). Servant-leadership requires trust to be present first within the organization (Lowe, 1998). Once high trust is established, an organization can have servant-leaders who lead by coaching, empowerment, persuasion, example and modeling, and where both leader and servant are in a relationship (Sergiovanni, 2000). Servant-leaders often view leadership as a special kind of service - not vice versa. They ask the question: "What leadership can you exercise as a servant?" (Russell, 2002). In order for a successful organization to be led by servant-leaders, what is needed are individuals who are trusting and share a common vision, along with a trustworthy organization that supports such leaders (Spears, 1998; Lowe, 1998; Sergiovanni, 2000). Covert or Explicit Power in Servant Leadership? Servant-leadership is grounded in the principle, similarly to that of transformational leadership, where power-through and power-with prevails. However, servant-leadership also emphasizes the idea that the leader serves their people. The traditional hierarchy of employment is typically a pyramid where the largest proportion 24 of people - the employees who execute the work - reside at the bottom, and the leader or top boss (e.g. CEO or principal) accompanied by the chair, board of directors and administrative allies to the CEO, sit at the top of the pyramid in small number. In contrast, servant-leadership encourages the pyramidal hierarchical structure to be fluid, depending on what is being discussed. Hierarchy still exists within the servant-leadership paradigm but does not stay rigid. For instance, in setting the vision, values or major goals of a school, the principal at the top, leads and directs. A leader is needed to see, commit and execute a vision; followers desire to see their leader lead. However, in other instances, the principal should not be the responsible one. Rather, they should be responsive and encourage their followers in areas of leadership. In a traditional pyramid structure, the principal of a school is the responsible person, and the teaching and support staff is responsive to the principal. However, in daily activities, this pyramid should be reversed. In this manner, the principal becomes responsive, and the teaching and support staff become responsible. The teachers then become empowered to teach, professional, and intrinsically motivated, while the principal becomes responsive. The role of the responsive principal is to create opportunities for others, and he/she would support, encourage, and facilitate his/her staff in becoming increasing empowered, professional and motivated. By working for the staff, the purpose of the principal becomes to help the staff accomplish their goals. Such a concept can also be proclaimed as power-with. Moral and Ethical Questions Regarding Servant-Leadership Can, however, servant leadership ultimately become an issue of coercion and manipulation? Are there any moral and ethical issues at stake? Servant leadership has roots in raising levels of human conduct and aspiration, seeking to transform people and 25 helping them grow into healthier, motivated, autonomous servants, like their leader. Is this an explicit means of exerting power over others, molding them into desirable servants and cultivating and rewarding certain characteristics? If followers are at first unwilling to be molded, and in time and many discussions later, then become convinced of this paradigm and the benefits, it would be interesting to analyze whether these values had just become hegemonic and slowly ingrained into the followers. In addition, is gaining support in the servant-leadership paradigm through persuasion and reasoning by followers simply a means of subversive power? Molding their beliefs and ways of thinking because of the desire to create a certain type of person could potentially be deemed as exercising power-over in the most subversive means of control. Inverting the Power Lens in Servant-Leadership Or Is It? - A Critique Is servant-leadership solely about facilitation and the good of all others, or is this paradigm of leadership a covert means of enabling poor thinking and reliance on the leader? Questions can be asked such as: How much of servant leadership is empowerment? Can leadership ever be selfless and in promotion of the interests of others at all costs? Are there any hidden constructions of power circuits within servant-leadership? If so, how are they exercised? Is servant-leadership within the school system simply a mask of power, and in fact, a means of perpetuating the status quo? How does servant-leadership truly help others? Service Sergiovanni (2000) does a good job presenting the servant-leadership paradigm and providing concrete descriptions of what a servant-leader would like look in a school. However, one might ask the ramifications of leading by such acts of service. For 26 instance, a specific example was given about a teacher not preparing fully for her fieldtrip. The teacher had not adequately prepared for the details of the trip, and the night before, the fieldtrip was in jeopardy of not being able to happen because there were not enough drivers. In desperation, the teacher rushed to the principal's office and sought advice at the 11 th hour. The principal listened, and, with compassion, aided the teacher in "service" by helping to salvage the fieldtrip, offering to drive, and ultimately making the fieldtrip possible. The teacher was greatly appreciative of the giving nature of her principal and thus they lived happily ever after. Or did they? One might wonder after reading this whether the teacher would learn next time to be more of a leader and to think ahead, or to simply be trained that the principal would serve her the next time she prepared with too little time, thus promoting dependent, unprofessional behaviour. The debate could be raised: Does being a servant-leader simply enable poor thinking and perpetuate poor planning, or does the servant-leader model service in a way that inspires followers to be servant-leaders towards others, thus perpetuating a servant-like organization? Viewing Conflict Servant-leadership has an emphasis on community, empowerment, shared authority, and relational power. As mentioned before, attributes of servant-leaders are ones who listen, empathize, build community, and are committed to the growth of people. Their chief goal is to serve others, as opposed to lead. How servant-leaders then, might view conflict would also be interesting to examine. As servant-leaders who empathize, build community and whose chief goal would be serve others, I would argue that conflict and disagreements would largely be viewed as a problem to be managed as it would be 27 interpreted as not being like-minded and having a common, shared vision. Efforts would be placed on ensuring that such a vision be upheld at all costs. I would not imagine that conflict would be viewed as positive and a reflection of unexamined issues. If servant-leadership is solely about creating more servant-leaders whose primary role is to serve others and are committed to this growth, latent power would be important to establish, despite theoretically encouraging a power-with model (where democracy is a right of all members). Latent Power Disguised as Empowerment A servant-leader also pins much of its leadership style as empowerment of others through service ofthe leader (Greenleaf, 1977). Research suggests that empowerment is the very act of having conversations, allowing for collaboration and having a group of people come to consensus in a decision making process. It can be argued, though, as Coulter and Wiens (1999) suggest, that servant-leadership is simply a means of masking the power issues at hand. If the goal of servant-leaders is to eventually cultivate and transform their followers to have the same approach to life, work and service, I would further argue that servant-leaders exercise what Reed (2000) would define as the third face of power: latent, which I will discuss in more detail below. In servant-leadership, the leaders are described as a servant of followers, one who is committed to the growth of people. Both follower and leader are bonded by a common vision. The questions are: whose vision and from whom did the vision originate? Third Face of Power As Reed (2000) discusses in her book: "Teaching With Power", the third face of power is described as being latent where followers are thoroughly and completely socialized such that internalization and hegemony occur. I would argue that in servant-28 leadership, there is a possibility that the widespread acceptance of existing routines, visions and decisions cloaked under the umbrella terminology of collaboration, common vision and service might in fact, be the most insidious use of power. The servant-leader in fact, might be influencing, shaping and determining the wants of all the followers, and thus, holding complete power because there is, in fact, no desire or reason to challenge himlher in the first place. Through indoctrination and acculturation, the followers become willingly compliant. In addition, shared decision making in a fully democratic fashion takes a lot of time. Time is a precious commodity for educators in schools. Thus, in the interest of a trusting community following their servant-leader who has the staffs full interests at heart, one can argue that these followers never have an opportunity to even be consciously aware of their own interests. Under the premise of a democratic process, which at the surface, seem accessible to everyone, the servant-leader is actually in full control of the political agenda. Therefore, a maintenance of the status quo where little re-examination, conflict or disagreement occur become the cultivated desirable environment. Questions Regarding Servant Leadership I believe for the most part, that teachers are professional, committed, intrinsically motivated, and desiring to build community. However, the building of trusting relationships, one another's best interests and the implementation of the school vision is not everyone's goal at all times. There are also definite moments when a person's self interests hinder leadership. I think it is ignorant to believe that a leader in power can be completely selfless and disregarding of their own needs at all times. Questions, thus, arise as a result. How does one distinguish between fabricated actions and genuine sincerity of a leader? Who determines the genuineness and moral 29 ethical ground of the actions ofa leader? How does an aspiring, human servant-leader practically develop a genuine desire to serve others for the common good? I also struggle with coming to understand how, if it is possible to develop a true servant-leader, he/she can fully convince and develop a complete trust from staff, while simultaneously not producing speculative disdain, disbelief and cynicism. Finally, does servant leadership produce different qualitative and quantitative results from other leadership paradigms? Can servant-leadership be measured? If so, how? Through my brief analysis and critique of servant-leadership, I have realized that this paradigm has not yet been grounded in solid qualitative and quantitative research studies and for the most part, lacks systematic study and rigorous testing. A leadership theory should be able to "describe why leaders do what they do, support predictions about the consequences of specific leadership behaviours, and prescribe specific circumstances under which leaders perform most effectively" (Sendjaya and Sarros, 2002). More research is needed in regards to the servant-leadership paradigm, and the questions I have asked provide a basis for its investigative direction in the future. Conclusion Sergiovanni contrasts two different ways of exercising leadership in schools. On one side is a culturally grounded system of morally binding relationships, shared meaning and commitment, sometimes described as transformative leadership and/or servant-leadership. On the other side, is a management function which is mostly about results, efficiency, structural organization and extrinsic rewards and punishments, often described as transactional leadership. I would here define management as the responsibilities to hire and support good teachers, ensure supplies are ordered, keep building maintenance in order, organize budgets and fundraising initiatives, and ensure the school operates 30 smoothly and effectively (Coulter and Wiens, 1999). While placing primacy on effective management alone is a sure recipe for meaningless school culture, without effective management, there is little possibility for building a learning community in its best sense. Only by being both managerially effective and culturally and relationally sensitive can leaders bring out the best in their schools for the staff and students. I believe a good leader will find him or herself switching instinctively between styles according to the people, the work and the situations they deal with. Principals need to be able to effectively manage the daily routines of schools, while, at the same time, provide leadership for the students, staff, parents and community. I would like to suggest that principals should be skilled managers before progressing to higher level leadership capacities, such as building relationships, positive morale, vision and collaboration. Leadership relates to creating vision and a sense of shared values in order to foster feelings of community, positive ethics and shared decision-making through democratic means whenever pqssible. The power of a dynamic leader lies in the wisdom of knowing which decisions should be shared, and which should not be, as well as understanding the intricacies of working with people and conflict on a continual basis. The job of a leader is realizing that conflict is inevitable and to embrace it. Some would even suggest that the job of a leader is to create problems, rather than to solve them. Micropolitics and power will constantly be a part of the educational system. Means by which conflict is managed, interest groups advocating for furthering their own interests, and power, formal or informal, overt or latent, are a part of every organization that will ever exist. Hence, micropolitical strategies become interwoven within any educational setting. 31 Educational leadership, regardless of the paradigm, should always be about changes to improve education. I believe that effective leaders must be both reflective and critical, while forward thinking and visionary. Principals who espouse values such as democracy, power-with and vision are leading the community in the first steps of embracing broader definitions on the purpose of education and leadership. 32 References Bacharach, S. & Mundell, B. (1993). Organizational politics in schools: Micro, macro, and the logics of action. Educational Administration Quarterly, 29 (4), 423-452. Batten, J. (1998). Servant-leadership: A passion to serve. In L.C. Spears (Ed), Insights on leadership: Service, stewardship, spirit, and servant-leadership (pp. 38-53). New York: Wiley. Blase, J. (1991). The micropolitical perspective. In J. Blase (Ed.), The Politics of life in schools: Power, conflict and cooperation (pp. 1-18). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press, Inc. Blase, J. & Anderson, G. (1995). The micro politics of educational leadership: From control to empowerment. New York: Teacher College Press. Bondy, E. & Ross, D. (1992). Micro-political competence: How teachers can change the status quo. The Clearing House, 66 (1), 10-14. Brunner, C. (2002). Professing educational leadership: Conceptions of power. Journal of School Leadership, 12, 693-720. Burbules, N. (1986). A theory of power in education. Educational Theory, 36 (2),95-114. Bums, J.M. (1978). Leadership. New York: Harper & Row. Coulter, D. & Wiens, J.R. (1999). A century's quest to understand school leadership. In J. Murphy and K. Seashore Louis (Eds), Handbook of research on educational administration, Second Edition (pp. 45-72). Washington: AERA. Foster, W. (1989). Toward a critical practice of leadership. In J. Smyth (Ed.), Critical perspectives on educational leadership (pp. 39-62). New York: The Falmer Press. 33 Foucault, Michel. (1980). Power/Knowledge. New York: Random House Inc. Greenfield, W. (1991). The micropolitics ofleadership in an urban elementary school. In J. Blase (Ed.), The politics of life in schools: Power, conflict and cooperation (pp. 161-184). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press, Inc. Greenleaf, R. (1977). Servant leadership. New York: Paulist Press, Inc. Greenleaf, R. (1998). Servant: Retrospect and prospect. In The power of servant leadership (pp. 17-59). San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler. Greenleaf, R. (1998). The leadership crisis: A message for college and university faculty. In The power of servant leadership (pp. 77-91). San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler. Hoyle, E. (1982). Micropolitics of educational organizations. Educational Management & Administration, 10 (2), 87-98. Lad, L. & Luechauer, D. (1998). On the path to servant-leadership. In L.C. Spears (Ed), Insights on leadership: Service, stewardship, spirit, and servant-leadership (pp. 54-67). New York: Wiley. Lowe, J. (1998). Trust: The invaluable asset. In L.C. Spears (Ed), Insights on leadership: Service, stewardship, spirit, and servant-leadership (pp. 68-76). New York: Wiley. Malen, B. (1994). The micropolitics of education: Mapping the multiple dimensions of power relations in school polities. Politics of Education Association Yearbook. Journal of Education Policy, 9 (5&6), 147-167. Plato. The simile of the cave. In The Republic (D. Lee Trans.) New York: Penguin. Reed, C. (2000). Teaching with power: Shared decision-making and classroom Practice. New York: Teachers College Press. 34 Russell, R.F. (2002). A review of servant leadership attributes: Developing a practical model. Leadership & Organization Development Journal, 23 (3), 145-157. Sackney, L., Walker, K., & Mitchell, C. (1999). Postmodern conceptions of power for educational leadership. Journal of Educational Administration and Foundations, 14 (1),33-57. Sendjaya, S. & Sarros, J.C. (2002). Servant leadership: Its origin, development and application in organizations. Journal of Leadership and Organizational Studies, 9 (2), 57-64. Sergiovanni, T. 1. (1992). Why we should seek substitutes for leadership. Educational Leadership, 49 (5), 41-45. Sergiovanni, T.J. (2000). Leadership as stewardship. In Educational Leadership (pp. 269-286). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Smirchich L. , & Morgan G. (1982). Leadership: The management of meaning. Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 18 (3), 257-273. Smith, B., Montagno, R. & Kuzmenko, T. (2004). Transformational and servant leadership: Content and contextual comparisons. Journal of Leadership and Organizational Studies, 10 (4),80-91. Spears, L.C. (1998). Insights on leadership: Service, stewardship, spirit, and servant-leadership. New York: Wiley. Youngs, Howard. (2007). There and back again: My unexpected journey into 'servant' and 'distributed' leadership. Journal of Educational Administration and History, 39 (1), 97-109. 35 

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