Competency Documentation


6: Competent Scholar

6b: Leadership Foundations

Scholarly/Philosophical Foundations (from IDP)
Reflection paper: personal worldview philosophy in comparison to/contrast with other worldviews of leaders and other theorists.

See Worldview Paper

6f: Technology Application

Scholarly/Philosophical Foundations (from IDP)
Reflection paper about experience teaching AVLN Integrating Technology into the Classroom
Reflection paper: Philosophy of Leadership and technology section, answering such questions as, What leadership theories suggest the need for a leader’s need for a working knowledge of technology? How can an effective use of technology enhance the effectiveness of a leader?

Computers, scanners, World Wide Web, fax machines, web cams, telephones, digital cameras, videoconferencing equipment: Why in the world do we need these things? Don't they just clutter up our lives and cause frustration? After all, seemingly minutes after purchasing a computer or digital camera, another product is introduced that makes the brand new toy just paid for with hard earned cash (or plastic!) obsolete! And when any one of these things fail, people spend long hours and lots of money having to fix them. So, why do we need them? And why in the world is this competency included in, of all things, a LEADERSHIP program?

If you think about it long enough, we don't NEED any of these things. Our forefathers somehow survived just fine with none of the technology available to us today. They seemed happy enough. Perhaps, however, we could compare this need for technology to our feelings toward people living in third world countries. Yes, they seem happy enough with their lives, but would we want to change places with them? Likewise, with the wealth of technology available to us today, would we really want to go back?

Before leaders answers "yes," we must consider this: Leadership is all about CHANGE. An effective leader will utilize the tools available to him/her in the most efficient manner in order to communicate (see Reflections 4); a leader will gather information effectively to further his/her knowledge base about problems, situations, etc., and a good leader will not hoard this information for him/herself ("...[I]n the context of an open organization structure and an inclusive culture - in other words, in the kind of climate that Powell advocates and fosters - technology can be truly liberating" Harari, 45). Technology, like it or not, facilitates in communication and information gathering/dissemination. The best connection I can make in the literature is to turn to Colin Powell. Powell is a leader whom I personally admire, and reading about him in Harari's book The Leadership Secrets of Colin Powell has given me more reason to look up to him. According to Harari, "Powel emphasized technology as a key tool in building open communication" (45). A longer quote from Powell is appropriate here:

With the end of the Cold War came the explosion of the information and technology revolutions, where not only did you have this mosaic, this kaleidoscope, but you see it all being connected together through the power of the Internet, and fax machines, and satellite dishes, and cellular telephony, all allowing us to move information, knowledge, data, capital around the world at the speed of light.... I am absolutely persuaded of the transformational nature of this new technology and what is it going to do to the world (45-6).

A good leader will learn the skills needed in order to do his/her job to the best of his/her ability. In this day and age, that means learning to utilize the necessary and expedient technology to their highest abilities in order to be more effective in whatever leadership role one finds himself in. Yes, this might mean a CHANGE from the old ways of doing things, but isn't that what leadership is all about?