Managerial Leadership Competencies of Heads of Department in Higher Education Institutions in Kerala, India
14 Pages Posted: 24 Jan 2015 Last revised: 26 Jan 2015
Date Written: September 14, 2014
The study investigates the managerial leadership competencies and roles of Heads of Departments in higher education institutions. Thirty six Heads of Department who manage academic departments with subordinate staff in six higher education institutions in Kerala, India were interviewed using semi-structured interviews and an analytical tool. The results assist in clarifying the role of Heads of Department in Indian higher education institutions and enabled the respondents to articulate their perspectives about important managerial leadership competencies. Heads of Department perceive that they need to possess a unique balance of managerial leadership competencies in order to be effective in higher education institutions. Heads of Department confirmed that many of the managerial leadership competencies that they need to possess are commonly associated with managers in general. However, there are specific competencies which would assist them to deal with the cultural and organisation milieus in which they operate. A recommendation for practices is that if managerial leadership competencies can be identified, they can be operationalised in ways that will assist both the Head of Department and the higher education institution in terms of selection, performance management and development.
Keywords: Higher education institutions; leadership competencies; Indian universities; heads of department.
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