The issue of leadership, the need for good, insightful and decisive leaders is a prominent theme in Education. Yet few can define exactly what leadership is. This book examines the phenomenon of leadership in post-compulsory education through the careful description and analysis of a long-term observational study of college principals at work. In contrast to other, more theoretical, attempts to understand leadership, this book develops an understanding of leadership by pointing to specific examples of what leaders actually do as they go about their everyday work of resolving organisational issues. Instead of presenting leaders as charismatic heroes this book investigates a number of familiar, routine, aspects of everyday leadership work: how leadership is performed; the various technologies email, documents, slide presentations involved in leadership work; the everyday management of organisational personnel and meetings; and how success and failure is defined and understood by the leaders themselves. It concludes with some suggestions of what is learned from understanding leadership as everyday work and some cautionary tales for those who would become educational leaders themselves.

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