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Leading in the College Union: A Study of Senior Level Professional’s Leadership Practices

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TITLE Leading in the College Union: A Study of Senior Level Professional’s Leadership Practices
The Bulletin
Association of College Unions International
July 2007 (pp. 22-28)

The article provides an overview of effective leadership practices of senior college union professionals.

Participants in the Senior Manager Professionals Program (SMPP), facilitated at the 2007 annual conference of the Association of College Unions International, were invited to complete the Leadership Practices Inventory and to seek similar completion from their supervisors, subordinates, and institutional peers. Seventy-one individuals who registered in advance for the SMPP were requested to participate in this study and 55 provided usable data (77% response rate). The sample was equally split between male and female respondents, with three quarters holding an advanced educational degree. A strong majority of participants were tenured in the field and at their institution.

The leadership scores of participants and their observers were relatively similar. Supervisors scored the senior leaders higher in all leadership practices with the exception of Inspiring, with institutional peers generally having the second highest scores, followed by direct reports.

Enabling was the only leadership practice to have all six statements in the top portion of the 30-item ranking of statements while Challenging had all of its statements in the bottom half of the list. A majority of statements relating to Inspiring fell into the lower portion of the ranking and the statements for Encouraging fell across the rankings.


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