• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

Leadership in Nonprofit Organizations is about exemplary leadership as found in both corporate and nonprofit organizations. The authors take a fresh approach to the study of leadership: they perform research in nonprofits both to understand and appreciate their complexities, and to reachconclusions about the nature of leadership in any context, including for-profit and governmental entities. Moving from nonprofit to for-profit in this way reverses the flow of ideas as represented in the mainstream literature of leadership. The authors' journey leads through case studies of remarkable leaders succeeding in complex situations. The book explores contemporary versions of leadership as embedded in American culture. It develops the concept of good fit between the leader and circumstances in which she or he must lead; it reveals predictable leadership dynamics and cycles; it explains how leaders can increase the readiness for change in their organizations; it describes the felt experience of "flow" when successful leaders are lost in the moment. Although each chapter employs a different lens, the object is the same throughout-leadership as the practice of alignment. The result is a multifaceted view of leadership as a complex system of shifting interrelationships that yields insights useful to students, researchers and leaders themselves.   Features and Benefits: Critical review of literature on leadership which encourages diversity in leadership models and approaches. Case studies of nonprofit leadership which affirm public-minded, mission-driven leaders and acknowledge their contributions. Chapters on leadership constructs such as fit, dynamics, readiness and flow which provide useful insights and methods to enable success. Overarching concept of alignment which reframes leadership as an active process where the awareness of and response to the interplay of multiple, relevant factors matters more than charisma, pedigree or power. 

The Practice of Alignment
The practice of alignment

Since alignment is the fundamental act of leadership in organizations, we need to know how leaders achieve it. Those who are most effective do so in numerous small ways. Each interaction during the course of a day is an opportunity to connect people with people, people with strategy, and strategy with effort. Major events such as the hiring of an executive director or the development of a strategic plan also offer alignment opportunities. Whatever the specific content of a leader's activities, she must also be actively engaged in the process of alignment.

Informal Efforts: The Everyday Practice of Alignment

In this section, we will illustrate the constant flow of leadership activities that, together, represent the everyday practice of alignment.

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