Leadership: Theory and Practice

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Now thoroughly updated the Second Edition of Leadership: Theory and Practice includes these features:

- An additional chapter on Leadership Ethics written to address an increased level of concern among both students and practitioners on this timely topic, including descriptions of ethical theories and an analysis of five principles of ethical leadership--respect, service, justice, honesty, and community

- An entirely new chapter on Women in Leadership, including a new "Gender Consciousness Questionnaire" that allows readers to assess their own attitudes about gender issues in the workplace

- A complete Instructor's Manual with chapter overviews, lists of concepts and terms, questions for study and discussion, activities for use in class, writing assignments, and a test bank of true and false and multiple choice questions

- The same user-friendly, chapter-consistent format as the First Edition, with each chapter examining a specific leadership approach, including its strengths and weaknesses, its application, three case studies of each approach, and approach-specific instruments and/or questionnaires

- Comprehensive updates and additions incorporating recent advances in scholarship in the field as well as suggestions from classroom use at over 250 colleges and universities where the First Edition was adopted

Leadership: Theory and Practice provides a description and analysis of a wide variety of different theoretical approaches to leadership, giving special attention to how each theory can be employed to improve leadership in real-world organizations. Written in a clear, concise manner, the first edition has been widely used in undergraduate and graduate courses in business, organizational communication, political science, public administration, training and development, and health services. The newly expanded second edition includes more leadership topics, research findings, questionnaires, case studies, and everyday applications.

Customer Reviews:

  • Understandable AND Useful
    This book was easy to understand and actually demonstrated how book knowledge CAN be put to practical use....more info
  • Up to date... complete.
    This book includes the basic theories about leadership up to today. It's easy to read, and each chapter includes examples, applications, the limitations and the strengths of the theory explained. When compared to other books about leadership, I consider it very complete, but also concise....more info
  • Interesting reading with good practical application
    I purchased for a class, the reading is easy to understand and this new edition has a chapter related to culture and leadership that previous editions don't have which I found useful. Overall a good book worth reading....more info
  • Excellent Review
    This was my first purchase of a used book from Amazon. Everything went perfectly. The book came on time and in the condition that was described. I was very happy with my purchase and will use Amazon in the future....more info
  • The how, when, why and what of leadership theories
    This book explores the very foundation of leadership theories and unfolds the essence of all different leadership types. This book explains indepth what all the other popular best sellers only tries to discusses superficially....more info
  • Finally! A user-friendly theory book
    For those seeking a crisp, clearly written book summarizing all the major leadership theories without being numbed into sleep, this book is it. Beginning with trait approaches, Northouse covers all the major leadership theories--style, situational, contingency, path-goal, leader-member, transformational, team, psychodynamics, gender, and ethics. Northouse clearly explains each theory, discusses the strengths and weaknesses of each, and provides case studies and samples of each leadership instrument. Although slightly more simplistic than other leadership texts, references are provided to allow readers to explore each theory in greater depth....more info
  • Good leadership book
    This book I used during a graduate school course and it was very easy to read and understand. ...more info
  • Theory and Practice at a Very Good Price
    Now in it's fourth edition, this book is written to attempt to bridge the gap between the simplistic popular literature and the more abstract theoretical approaches. It does this with a layout approach I have not seen before. It uses two color printing throughout and usually the theory about a situation is printed on the white pages and then a case study is printed with a blue background. The case study directly relates to the problems addressed by the theory. There are no answers to the case studies as in real life there are often no answers. This gives the instructor ample room to open discussions and provide guidance.

    The new edition of the book includes two new chapers:

    Culture and Leadership - examines the latest research on culture, its dimensions, and ways in which culture affects the leadership process.

    Women and Leadership - examines the styles of female and male leaders and their effectiveness, the causes of the glass ceiling and how it is being broken.

    Finally, various changes have been made throughout the book to clarify some issues, expand on some others, include new research and so on....more info
  • LDR Theory+ Practice

    Overall this book is very well done! Concise layout with good balance of theory and application. Pro/Con sections can be a bit ambiguous, but great reference and practice study book. Well done Northouse! ...more info
  • Great book for a leadership course
    I first used Northouse's book in 2001, when I was a doctoral student. The book truly provides a good overview of the most common leadership theories and styles that exist, along with their advantages and disadvantages.

    I recently used the book in another position: as an instructor of leadership courses. My current perspective is that some chapters are better written than others, but that may have to do with the fact that not all chapters are written by the same author.

    Yet, overall, it is a very useful work for those who want to familiarize themselves with the predominant perspectives on leadership.

    Although I used this book as a partial foundation for my own work, "The Awakened Leader: One Simple Leadership Style That Works Every Time, Everywhere," there is one major difference: While Northouse basically presents various leadership theories alongside each other as separate, non-complying entities, "The Awakened Leader" claims that leadership in the new millennium should entail segments of ALL leadership styles and theories on an appropriateness basis.

    I firmly believe that, in a time where globalization has become a part of our everyday life and has ignited increasing interdependency, multiplicity of mindsets and approaches, and multi-faceted workplaces, there can no longer be a separation of various leadership styles.

    Consequently, "The Awakened Leader" presents a meta-leadership approach, which guides the leader toward implementing the appropriate leadership style once he or she has assessed the situation, the followers, and the environment at hand. Awakened Leadership is based on flexibility through open-mindedness, or wakefulness. And it completes the perspectives that many great leadership authors have presented us in the past decade: successful leadership of the self and others, based on proven trends of the past, the now, and the future.

    Yet, that being said, I think Northouse's book is an important foundation for students in business and management to know what leadership styles are in existence, while "The Awakened Leader" encourages combining these leadership styles on a need basis....more info
  • Crtical Evaluation of LEADERSHIP
    The author fails to recognize the relation of leaders to the structure of society (persons, families and bureaucracies) as well as all the general roles played within families (leader, manager, entrepreneur and apprentice). Leaders along with members of their families play all these roles with varying degrees of responsibility. While he does recognize that leaders exercise power, he goes on to highlite coercion which is only one and the least used of three tools of power and fails to identify the foundation of power.Finally his subtopics lack
    logic and his case studies are exercises in management and not leadership. This introduction to leadership has a very limited scope without an apparent logic....more info
  • Book for Class
    I bought this book for school. So far it is alright. If one is looking into a leadership role it is a good read...more info
  • Great Resource for General Leadership Information
    This book really highlights some of the core concepts of Leadership. I found it useful in assisting with identifying leadership styles, approaches, and even some ethical perscriptions....more info
  • A useful book
    There are many different leadership theories. And after each theory, there are case studies and exercises for application. This book is one textbook of my leadership class. I think it is helpful to understand different leadership concepts. ...more info
  • Much stronger on Theory than actual Practice.
    Despite its subtitle, "Leadership: Theory & Practice" emphasizes the former much more than the latter. Scholars of leadership looking for theoretical exegeses & interpretive typologies may find what they're seeking in Northouse's analysis. Leadership practitioners (or high school educators, like me) may find less useful grist for their mills here. I appreciated many of the instruments Northouse cites here for assessing different aspects of leadership. But I found little spark here to distinguish "Leadership" from the quotidian genre of introductory college textbooks....more info
  • Excellent reference and text book
    I bought this book as a text book for a leadership class. It is very handy, so far read the first 3 chapters. Gives very good and easy to read details on definition of leadership, ways of looking at leadership. Leadership as traits, leadership as skills, leadership as an interactive process, and more. Gives good comparison between leadership and management, covers commonalities. Has good concise case studies (with no answers - got to work with a mentor or instructor on that), some self-assessment tools, like leadership trait questionaire. Overall all it is a very good reference on the topic and also provides plenty of practical examples, case studies and tools to use right away, book is easy to read and follow, paper is not glossy hence very easy to read and does not reflect light, text is black / blue, well organized. Good buy for the buck !...more info
  • Excellent primer
    Northouse writes engagingly and clearly and presents an excellent primer on managerial leadership. The book covers all the main elements needed to gain an understanding of the topic as well as the general progress of leadership theories and their application in a managerial context.

    Each Chapter is dedicated to an approach starting with the Trait Approach in chapter 2 (after an introduction to leadership in chapter 1) and culminating with Contingency theory. All the chapters are organized in a consistent and logical manner starting with (1) a description of the theory; (2) how does it work; (3) its strengths; (4) weaknesses; (5) applications and then some (6) case studies. This makes Northouse's treatment very straightforward and combined with his writing style, both an enjoyable and educational read.

    However, while this book is probably the best introduction to the topic, readers looking for more in-depth information or a more academic treatment would probably be better serve with Yukl's "Leadership in Organizations (7th Edition)."...more info
  • Very Thoughtful
    I feel the text is easy to read. It hightlights the areas and explains them very well. It is understandable and does not skirt issues etc. I would recommend for a great text on leadership....more info
  • Interesting and easy to follow read
    Northouse's book examines each of the different theories in leadership in a clear, concise manner. Also, in the back of each chapter there is an evaluation and case studies that help synthesize the information. I was worried that wasn't going to finish the book in the time for my class, but I found it was to read through and understand in only a few sittings....more info
  • For practical use by any aspiring or practicing leader
    Now in its third edition, Leadership Theory And Practice by Peter G. Northouse (Professor of Communication, Western Michigan University) examines the foremost leadership theories with particular attention as to how each approach can be directly applied to real-world situations and organizations. Exploring basic approaches (as well as theories such as the Contingency Theory, Path-Goal Theory, Leader-Member Exchange Theory), and then expanding beyond methodology to scrutinize such topics as leadership ethics and the barriers unique to women in (or who are seeking) leadership positions, Leadership Theory And Practice is very highly recommended -- whether for both academic study concerning leadership behavior and concrete, or for practical use by any aspiring or practicing leader in the business community today....more info
  • A thorough overview
    Easy to read and well reserached college text....more info
  • Very useful and educational book
    We are using this in my Intro to Leadership course at college and I have found the book to be very interesting. The author writes very clearly and explains everything quite well. I know its weird to write about, but I really enjoy this authors writing style. I rarely get an academic book where the writing is simple and very straight forward. In a crunch, I can read the first setence or two from each of his paragraphs and understand the concepts of the chapter quite well.

    As far as leadership practice vs. theory, I am still learning about leadership so I can't say much in this regard. I believe the book has taught me more about leadership than I will ever learn actually being placed in a leadership position. I would definetely suggest reading this book, thinking about your own personal experiences while you read, and then think of ways you can apply things in real life to give your self an idea about leadership practice.

    Overall, I have enjoyed every aspect of this book and found it to be very useful for assessing my own small leadership position I hold in my part-time job. Definetely a good book inside or outside the academic world for anyone working within (as a 'follower') or leading an organization....more info
    If you're interested in a scientific approach to the various styles and theories of sound leadership, then this is for you. I highly recommend this read for anyone in a leadership role. A must read for Senior Managers of organizations who arrived in their positions with little knowledge of what it means to lead...that's alot of you folks!!

    Great resource for life ! Enjoy!...more info
  • Leadership poor examples
    When a leader has to contrive situations to get their staff to follow them, they are not very good leaders. When an author and consultant advises such methods, as this author does at least twice, they are not very good consultants and shouldn't be publishing serious advice but offerening instead a book about what not to do....more info


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