Leadership, and the study of it, has its commencement in the early civilizations. Ancient rulers, pharaohs, emperors and biblical patriarchs have one thing in common – leadership. Although scholars have been studying this phenomenon for almost two centuries, numerous definitions and theories abound throughout. However, enough similarities exist so as to define “leadership” as an effort of influence and the power to induce compliance (Wren, 1995). Leadership is a process through which an individual influences others to accomplish an objective and directs the organization in a way that makes it more cohesive and coherent. This definition of leadership is relatively similar to that of Northouse’s (2007,p.3) And the definition of a leader stipulated by Peter Drucker is someone who has followers. The capacity to influence others is dependent on the power detained.
The leader’s attitudes would definitely determine the level of productivity from his employees. A Task Orientation or Directive Behaviour reflects the concern of a leader for the actual task at hand whereas Employee Orientation or Supportive Behaviours reflects how much a leader is concerned for the people around him, providing support and encouragement for them. Concurrently, different theories have been developed for the field of leadership but we would be showing more attention to the Invitational Leadership theory. The research on the effects of Invitational Education Theory (IET) in the educational administrative process is relatively new as compared to other theories pertaining to leadership. Invitational Leadership has a different dimension from the standard theories of leadership that emphasized the process of influencing others through the use of power to an alternative leadership style that promotes collaboration and show consideration and respect for individuals in the educational system. This study comprises of two parts. Firstly, we would see the theoretical introduction of the Invitational Leadership, followed a brief comparison of the theory with other leadership theories possessing more or less the same characteristics and finally, in what ways the Invitational Leadership is more suitable to the educational community. Secondly, we would focus on what the invitational style provides in response to the demands of the school sector. Besides, we would see to what extent the invitational leadership is applied to my profession through examples drawn from my past experiences.
1. Theoretical part
Purkey (1992, p.5) defines Invitational Leadership as
a theory which “is a collection of assumptions that seek to explain phenomena and provide a means of intentionally summoning people to realise their relatively boundless potential in all areas of worthwhile human endeavour” Invitational Theory is a mode of professional practice that summons the environment and all relationships formed in educational and human service organizations. It is a process for communicating caring and appropriate message intended to invite forth the realisation of human potential. It is also a way for identifying and changing those institutional and relational forces that defeat and destroy potential.
Communication is vital for all social relationships or integration. Schools, as a social institution, send out complex message systems that continuously inform people of their worth, ability, and power to direct themselves. The concept of “invitation” derives from the effort provided by those who seek to communicate ideas. This involves shaping, moulding and changing. The word invite is a derivation of the Latin word invite. It probably began as vito, which means to avoid or shun. In early Roman society, vito was used to express fear of encroachment by other tribes, and to forbid their entry into Rome. As Rome became a dominant force, its citizens felt more secure and opened...
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