The Refractive Thinker: An Anthology of Higher Learning by Dr. Cheryl Lentz by Dr. Cheryl Lentz - Read Online

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The Refractive Thinker - Dr. Cheryl Lentz

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Normative Leadership Types and Organizational Performance: A Case for Authoritative Performance

Dr. Tom Woodruff References


The Value of Value Stream Mapping

Dr. Judy Blando References


The Impact of Leadership on Workplace Bullying

Dr. Cynthia Roundy References


Strategic Planning in Times of Extreme Uncertainty

Dr. Elmer Hall References


The Historical Development and Transformational Process of Student Financial Aid

Dr. Armando Salas-Amaro References


Globalizing Your Business: A Practical Approach to International Expansion

Dr. Ed Knab References


An Assessment of the Relationship Between Organizational Culture Types and Knowledge Management Initiatives

Dr. Lisa M. Kangas References


The CEO's Triple Dilemma of Compensation, Employee, and Corporate Performance Management

Dr. Lucy Surhyel Newman References


A Quantitative Analysis of Strategic and Financial Changes in Small Private Higher Education Institutions

Dr. Laura D. Grandgenett References


Fail Faster, Succeed Sooner

Dr. Cheryl Lentz References



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Do not go where the path may lead, Go instead where there is no path, and leave a trail.



Welcome to The Refractive Thinker™: An Anthology of Higher Learning. Thank you for joining us on our maiden voyage to celebrate the accomplishments of these doctoral scholars affiliated with the University of Phoenix School of Advanced Studies.

The purpose of this anthology is to offer a glimpse into the scholarly works of these authors. The intent is to provide a forum for them to share their thoughts and expertise as they contribute to the expanse of knowledge in pursuit of the tenets and philosophies of higher learning.

The title of this book, The Refractive Thinker™ was chosen intentionally to highlight the ability of these doctoral scholars to bend thought, to converge its very essence on the ability to obliquely pass through the perspective of another. The goal is to ask and ponder the right questions; to dare to think differently, to find new applications within unique and cutting edge dimensions, ultimately to lead where others may follow or to risk forging perhaps a new path entirely.

Leaders ultimately change the world simply by questioning the very process of thought and life itself. They are insatiably curious, never satisfied or content with what is, always looking to the horizon and asking the fundamental question of why—with the goal to perhaps arrive at a better place than where they began—forever changed by the very act of asking questions. They dare to question themselves and ask why not? And what can they do to be an agent of change? The Refractive Thinker™ offers this discourse, a place where these authors offer a chapter of their work so the audience can sample a mere bite of the apple with the hope of being given a broader canvas from which to paint further.

I invite you to join with me as we venture forward to showcase these authors of the first volume with our eye toward future volumes as a forum to share more of the esteemed work of these colleagues and future authors. The goal is to offer a chance to bring to publication more ideas from which the audience may be interested in the expertise and guidance that they offer.

Please contact me for further information regarding these authors and the works contained within these pages. Perhaps your organization may be looking for their expertise to incorporate as part of your annual corporate meetings as a keynote or guest speaker(s), perhaps to offer individual or group seminars, or require their expertise as consultants.

If your university or organization would like to publish their own volume of The Refractive Thinker™, customized to your needs, please contact us to discuss the details.

We look forward to your interest in discussing future opportunities. Let this be our beginning to which The Refractive Thinker™ will serve as our guide to this and future publications.


The foundation of leadership is to embrace asking questions—to validate and affirm what we do and why. Leaders often challenge this status quo to offer alternatives and new directions, to dare to try something that has not yet been done as proved true in this case. This publication required a leap of faith and belief in a new model by those willing to be first on this maiden voyage. As a result, please let me express my gratitude for the help of the many that made this project possible.

First, let me offer a special thank you to Trish Hladek and Dr. Tom Woodruff for their unwavering support and belief that traversing unchartered waters is worthy of the journey. My gratitude extends to our production specialist, Gary Rosenberg; cover designer, Joey Root; and companion website designer, James Lentz.

Let me also extend my sincere thanks to all participating authors who were willing to believe in this project for this first volume. As in one of the founding principles of leadership, one never gets a second chance to be first.

Dr. Cheryl Lentz, Managing Editor

Las Vegas, NV · April 2009


Normative Leadership Types and Organizational Performance: A Case for Authoritative Performance

Dr. Thomas M. Woodruff

Do more authoritative leaders produce better organizational performance? Harvey (2002) suggested that the fundamental goals of capitalism may be inconsistent with the value component of normative leadership theories. Citing historical proponents of capitalism such as Adam Smith and Milton Friedman, Harvey described the leadership component of organizations under this economic perspective as egoistic. The focus of leadership is on organizational goals with limited appreciation or concern for employee-followers. This perspective fits the autocratic and situational leadership styles and would support leadership as a value-free concept.

While this perspective may have been appropriate in a modernistic view of organizations, current perspectives suggest that the value component of leadership is essential in postmodernist organizations. Normative leadership theories such as transactional, transformational, and empowering propose that appreciation and concern for employee-followers adds to the well-being of the organization. The question remains if well-being includes bottom-line performance.

The technical perspective presented in this paper was derived from the results of a 2007 study of community banks located in the Kansas City Region of the FDIC. By regulatory definition, community banks have total assets up to one billion dollars, comprise approximately 93% of the bank organizations in the U.S., and the majority are closely held (Woodruff, 2007). This discussion specifically focuses on the relationship between leadership types and corporate performance.

The underlying study examined leadership types, board governance types, director independence, and organizational performance. The theoretical expectations suggested that more empowering leadership contributed to more involved board governance, higher levels of director independence, and better corporate performance. The results of the study were significant indicating that they were not subject to chance and produced some interesting and unexpected results. Authoritative Performance posits that more authoritative and elemental leaders with a primary focus on the bottom-line produce better results than their more empowering counterparts. Are these results consistent with other industries outside of banking? To better understand the results, the next section presents the leadership types considered in the study.


There were five leadership types described in the study. The leadership types were developed by combining common elements of leadership models delineated from research of a variety of leadership experts. Leadership types ranged from Authoritative to Empowering. As the type moved from Authoritative to Empowering, leadership becomes more interactive with outside directors, promotes director independence, considers outside input, and focuses on the value component of leadership. The leadership typology developed is outlined in Table 1-1.

The authoritative leadership type includes the Great Man Autocratic, and Bureaucratic leadership theories. The Great Man Theory is a foundational model of modern leadership research with the assumption that leaders are born, not made. Rather than events creating the leader, this leader shapes history. Autocratic leaders enjoin followers by organizing events to achieve established organizational goals without follower input.

Bureaucratic leadership may be described as the praxis of experience and learning in manufacturing applied to generalized organizational settings where the power of the leader emanates from his or her organizational position. Bureaucratic leaders often regiment followers through deputies to achieve identified organizational goals. Collectively these leadership theories do not embrace ethical values or democratic leader/follower relationships that evolved later. Strategic direction emanates from these leaders while other directors and managers follow with no dialogue regarding organizational direction. The study theorized that authoritative leadership would relate to credulous board governance that reflected limited director experience and illusionary director input.

The elemental leadership type includes both trait and situational leadership theories. Behavioral scientists speculated that leadership could be taught. With this paradigm the basic postulate changed to leaders are made, not born. Studies evolved which attempted to identify the specific traits of leaders and to develop methods to teach these traits to candidates for leadership. Trait theorists focused on the attributes of the individual leader and not on other stakeholders or the environment. The assumption was that an individual with the right leadership traits could lead effectively in any situation or environment.

Situational theorists posited that specific circumstances defined the leadership traits required. Leadership grew out of the situation faced by the individual and thus defined the leadership model required. Situational leadership theoretically refined trait theory and the recruitment of executives by focusing on specific organizational needs. Strategic direction still emanated from this executive with little outside input. While the situational model was considered an improvement in leadership concepts, theorists soon recognized that other variables including ethical values and leader-follower relationships often determined effective leadership. The study theorized that elemental leadership would relate to passive board governance that supports the leader's proposals with limited review or input and is passive in strategic capability.

The practical leadership type includes pragmatic and transactional leadership. Pragmatic and Transactional leadership theories acknowledged a relationship between the leader and the follower that was mutually beneficial. This theory emphasized the benefits each side gained from the transaction and focused on the accomplishment of organizational goals. The environment, good or bad, was not as critical to the outcome because the leader worked within the boundaries of the environment to accomplish the goals.

The transactional model implied some level of respect between the leader and the follower. This model did not examine the relationship in any depth or consider the moral underpinnings of the leader. From an organizational perspective this somewhat democratic leader may seek the views of followers to define strategic direction then influence these followers through various means to gain their patronage. Practical leadership was theorized in the study to relate to authenticating board governance. This type of governance had limited involvement in the strategic proposals of the leader and certified the proposals to protect the interests of shareholders.

The optimizing leadership type includes charismatic and transformational leadership theories. Transformational leadership rose from transactional leadership by adding feelings with limited consideration for the ethical makeup of the leader. Transformational leaders are more revolutionary than transactional leaders and often develop emotional relationships with followers. As respected mentors and teachers, charismatic leaders build loyalty from followers by appealing to higher values and needs.

These leaders alter and elevate the focus of followers to achieve the personal and organizational goals of the leader. This leader wants to develop the skills of all followers for their own improvement and for the benefit of the organization. From the organizational perspective, the optimizing leader elevates the motives of others to follow his or her lead. Followers' perspectives may be altered to achieve the final governance decisions