Discussion 2: Shared Leadership


Today’s organizations face increasingly complex problems that require a vast amount of expertise to solve. It is no longer realistic to expect that one leader will have all of the capabilities to quickly and adequately solve these problems. As a result, many organizations are moving away from traditional, vertical leadership structures, where decision making occurs from the top down, to shared leadership, where decision making is distributed among members of work teams. While shared leadership shows great promise, it is not without its challenges and may not be appropriate for every organization.

In this Discussion, you will consider whether shared leadership would be effective in your current or former workplace. In doing so, you will examine the pros and cons of shared leadership.

To Prepare: Read Chapter 14 in the Northouse text, Chapter 18 in the Sage Handbook, and the articles “Team-Centric Leadership: An Integrative Review” and “How Shared Leadership Changes Our Relationships at Work.” Consider the definition, characteristics, and pros and cons of shared leadership. Read the article “Antecedents of Shared Leadership: Empowering Leadership and Interdependence.” Think about situational factors that contribute to the effectiveness of shared leadership. Based on what you have read about shared leadership, consider whether it would be effective in your current or former workplace and why or why not. By Day 4

Provide an argument for or against using shared leadership in your current or former workplace. Support your argument with the leadership literature and specific examples from your workplace.