Leadership: Challenges and Practice
BEM2037 Leadership Challenges and Practices addresses the more practical, active and vocational aspects of leadership. You will be encouraged to draw on your own experience of leadership in practice, and to engage in activities which enable you to develop your own leadership capacity. In this way, the course aims to enhance your employability, and to allow you to develop an action-oriented understanding of leadership as a response to personal and organizational challenges, which can be taken into your future work and organisation. The course therefore combines practical approaches to leading with a head-on approach to some of the tricky questions about leadership.
Additional Information: Internationalisation
This module uses diverse case study examples and students are encouraged to explore them in different cultural and international contexts through their group work and written assignments.
The module is informed by research on sustainability and other topics, and will support reflection on, and development of, practical skills that will help you solve leadership challenges associated with, but not limited to, environmental sustainability.
All of the reading lists, lectures, and workshop materials are available on the ELE (Exeter Learning Environment)
This module makes use of external perspectives through digital links – this enables a broader understanding of topics such as ‘Designing an organizational vision’, ‘Leading Change’ ‘Managing risks’ and ‘Using Your Voice to Network and Influence People’.
The module will familiarise students with cutting-edge, and current challenges you might face in leadership roles. It develops your ability to reflect on practice and to be cogniscant of practice within a contemporary framework of ethics, diversity and sustainability
Full module specification
|Module title:||Leadership: Challenges and Practice|
|Duration of module:||
Duration (weeks) - term 2: |
This module aims to address the more practical, active and vocational aspects of leadership, and starts from the assumption that almost every organised activity is initiated by leadership of some sort, and that most benefit from good leadership. Over the duration of this module, students will be encouraged to explore the following question:
What can each of us do to get better at leading, and to support others in leadership positions for the good of the shared enterprise?
Alongside engaging with contemporary theoretical perspectives on leadership, students will be encouraged to learn from their own and others’ experience(s) of leadership in practice, and to engage in activities which enable them to develop their own leadership capacity.
In this way, the module aims to enhance students’ employability, and to allow them to develop critical perspectives on leadership, which can be taken into their future work and organisations.
The module therefore combines practical approaches to leading with a head-on, theoretically informed approach to some of the tricky questions about leadership.
ILO: Module-specific skills
- 1. engage in a sustained, systematic and critical way with 'real life', 'real time' leadership issues of interest to them
- 2. critically appreciate the ways in which they themselves respond to, contribute to, challenge and/or reinforce particular ways of doing and thinking about leadership in practice
- 3. experiment with alternative ways of thinking about and/or acting out leadership within particular contexts, ethical, diversity and sustainability perspectives, and/or their own specific areas of interest
ILO: Discipline-specific skills
- 4. demonstrate a skillful, reflexive and a generally well-informed appreciation of what is involved in taking up leadership roles and in following the lead of others, including relevant ethical, diversity and sustainability implications
- 5. critically interpret the practice and rhetoric of leadership
ILO: Personal and key skills
- 6. question the assumptions embedded in their own leadership practice and that of others
- 7. demonstrate an awareness of wider social and cultural context (including political, historical and economic)
- 8. evidence self-awareness and the capacity for personal reflection
- 9. articulate confident and assertive arguments about their own practice
- 10. Articulate ideas using written communication skills
- 11. Think and write as an independent learner
Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)
|Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activities||Guided independent study||Placement / study abroad|
Details of learning activities and teaching methods
|Category||Hours of study time||Description|
|Form of assessment||Size of the assessment (eg length / duration)||ILOs assessed||Feedback method|
|Formative assessment provided weekly through feedback on workshop group activities||Short formative activities are carried out every week during lectures and workshops (up to 3 hours)||1-10||Verbal feedback during class|
Summative assessment (% of credit)
|Coursework||Written exams||Practical exams|
Details of summative assessment
|Form of assessment||% of credit||Size of the assessment (eg length / duration)||ILOs assessed||Feedback method|
|1 reflexive assignment based on workshop activities||40||1500 words + appendices||16, 9 & 10||Individual written feedback and generalised feedback presented in lectures|
|Essay based upon learning and reflection through the duration of the module||60||2500 words||1-8 & 11||Individual written feedback|
Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)
|Original form of assessment||Form of re-assessment||ILOs re-assessed||Timescale for re-assessment|
|1500 word report||1500 word report (40%)||1-6, 9 and 10||1st September|
|Reflective essay||Resubmission of previous assignment (60%)||1-8 and 11||1st September|
Re-assessments are new submissions in response to the original assignment briefs.
- Introduction to the module: Seeing leadership as a response to challenge
- Leading yourself
- Developing Purpose, Vision and Strategy
- Using Power and Influence Responsibly
- Taking Risks, Making Change
- Asking Challenging Questions – Is Leadership in Crisis?
- Self Study Week – assignment preparation
- Facilitation and Coaching
- Networking and Leading in Networks
- Assignment Workshops
Indicative learning resources - Basic reading
Mike, P. John Burgoyne and Tom, B. (2010). A Manager’s Guide to Leadership. London: McGraw-Hill Professional.
The above text is used as a self-development resource, rather than an up-to-date theoretical textbook. You will be expected to combine developmental reflection with reading on current leadership research. A further extensive reading list is provided on ELE.
Indicative additional resources include:
Balkundi, P. and Kilduff, M. (2006) ‘The Ties that Lead: A Social Network Theory Approach to Leadership’ The Leadership Quarterly 17: 419 – 439.
Brown, A.D., Colville, I., and Pye, A. (2015) ‘Making sense of sensemaking in organizational studies’ Organization Studies 36(2): 265-277
Cranmer, G.A., Goldman, Z.W., Houghton, J.D., (2019) ‘I’ll do it myself: self-leadershio, proactivity and socialization’ , Leadership and Organization Development Journal, Vol 40, No.6, pp 684-698
Flores, O.J. and Gunzenhauser, M.G (2019) ‘The problems with colorblind leadership revealed: a call for race-conscious leaders’ , International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, Vol 32, No 8 p963-981
Furtner, M.R., Tutzer, L. and Sachse, P (2018) ‘The Mindful Self-Leader: Investigating the Relationship Between Self-Leadership and Mindfulness’, Social Behavior and Personality, 46 (3) pp353-60
Larson, L and DeChurch, L.A. (2020) ‘Leading teams in the digital age: Four perspectives on technology and what they mean for leading teams’ , The Leadership Quarterly, 31, pp1-18
Maguire, S., & Hardy, C. (2013). Organizing processes and the construction of risk: A discursive approach. Academy of Management Journal, 56(1), 231-255.
Ndalamba,K.K., Caldwell, C and Anderson, V., (2018) ‘Leadership vision as moral duty’ Journal of Management Development, Vol 7, No 3pp 309-319
Neves, P., & Schyns, B. (2018). Destructive uncertainty: The toxic triangle, implicit theories and leadership identity during organizational change. In Organizational Change (pp. 131-141). Routledge.
Partlow, P. J., Medeiros, K. E., & Mumford, M. D. (2015). Leader cognition in vision formation: Simplicity and negativity. The Leadership Quarterly, 26(3), 448-469.
Thoroughgood, C. N., Padilla, A., Hunter, S. T., & Tate, B. W. (2012). The susceptible circle: A taxonomy of followers associated with destructive leadership. The Leadership Quarterly, 23(5), 897-917.
Uhl-Bien, M., & Arena, M. (2018). Leadership for organizational adaptability: A theoretical synthesis and integrative framework. The Leadership Quarterly, 29(1), 89-104.
Uhl-Bien, M., Riggio, R. E., Lowe, K. B., & Carsten, M. K. (2014). Followership theory: A review and research agenda. The Leadership Quarterly, 25(1), 83-104.
Module has an active ELE page?
Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources
ELE will form an integrative part of the module. Lecture notes will be put onto ELE before they are delivered, together with weekly reading lists, additional reading material, and workshop exercises. Details of assessments and study skills guides will also be made available via ELE
Indicative learning resources - Other resources
The course will make use of media clips from films (DVD) and via YouTube.
Last revision date