Human Services

Web Resources

This is a podcast about Howard Behar, Retired Director and former President, Starbucks International. How can busy human resource professionals get access to leading human resource thinkers in today’s fast paced and cost-conscious environment? While standard week long face to face executive education programs are ideal, they are expensive both in terms of time and money, thus limiting how many people a firm can afford to develop in this way. Teleconferences and webcasts are nice, but they require participants to be close to a phone or computer at a certain time, and they usually cost money. To help CAHRS partner firms provide broad-based development to their human resource professionals at absolutely no cost, the new CAHRS HR Leadership Podcast Series will offer 45-60 minute interviews with accomplished senior HR executives who can share their wisdom and experience in a medium unconstrained by time or geography.Cornell University HR Radio Show stars Howard Behar, Retired Director and former President, Starbucks International.   Hear Howard describe his leadership principles and his recommendations for HR professionals in this edition of the CAHRS HR Leadership Podcast.

An interview of Amir Erez of the University of Florida regarding two studies he recently performed examining how charismatic leaders influence their followers through emotional contagion. He and his colleagues found that although charismatic leaders tend to be in better moods than non-charismatic leaders, it is the leader's expression of positive moods (through behaviors like smiling and laughing) that influences followers.

An interview of Jay Carson about a study he recently published in the Academy of Management Journal with co-authors Paul Tesluk and Jennifer Marrone. They found that coaching by an external leader was a critical factor in the emergence of shared leadership, particularly when the internal team environment was poor. In turn, shared leadership was associated with higher team performance.

If you're a scientist and you want to learn which birds lead the flock during flights and which follow, there's probably no better way to research that question.

-Dr. Marie-Line Germain, Western Carolina University


Multimedia Resources

-Dr. Marie-Line Germain, Western Carolina University


Discussion Questions

Chapter 1: Introduction

Question: When you think about an effective leader, what characteristics, qualities, etc. come to mind? (Don't worry for now whether they are "traits" or "behaviors"--we'll get to all that soon enough) you think an effective leader is effective because he/she was born with the characteristics/qualities you identified. Please share briefly about the source of your views--is it from leadership experience, prior coursework, etc.

Question: Let’s make the assumption that we all want to demonstrate ethical leadership--but it can be very difficult given the pressures of a highly competitive marketplace. Consider the issue of layoffs--Just think about the mass layoffs resulting from the economic recession. Were/are these CEOs who directed the layoffs demonstrating ethical leadership? Be sure to support your response citing the Northouse material--particularly the distinction b/w teleological and deontological ethical theories. Then, in a subsequent posting, comment on how you see the HR manager exhibiting ethical leadership in their organizational role--be as specific as you can. 

Chapter 2: Trait Approach

I am interested in your view of Kirkpatrick & Locke's article "Do Traits Matter?

Questions: What do you believe its thesis is? How well supported do you think it was? How do you see it vis-a-vis the other trait theories and Northouse's 5 traits?

Chapter 5: Situational Approach

Read the short Case Study 5.3, "Getting the Message Across."

Questions: What is the problem at WCBA? Using SLII as a basis, what would you advise Ann to do differently at the radio station? Based on situational leadership, what creative schemes could Ann use to reduce FCC infractions at WCBA?

Chapter 6: Path–Goal Theory

Question: Do you feel that applying Path-Goal theory in the workplace would be easier or harder than some of the other theories we've discussed?

Chapter 7: Leader–Member Exchange Theory

Question: What is the usefulness of LMX theory to you in your understanding of leadership?

Chapter 8: Transformational Leadership

Question: President Barack Obama has been described as a transformational leader. Based on the theory of transformational leadership, explain why Obama could be perceived as a transformational leader (or not). Use practical examples to support your point. We are not interested in hearing about your political views. Please do not use this discussion thread as a political soapbox.

See these articles for more reference:

Chapter 15: Gender and Leadership

Question: Comment on how and why gender dynamics are relevant to team leadership--and to organizational leadership.

Chapter 16: Culture and Leadership

Question: Reflect upon the Chapter on Culture & Leadership and imagine being asked to brief an executive leader in your organization on the 5 Key insights from the material. You can use Hofstede's work if that helps you but I'm interested in your insights on culture and leadership. Please list your insights with "bullet headings" (and whatever explanation you also provide--not too long please.) 1-5 in order of importance.

-Dr. Marie-Line Germain, Western Carolina University



We gratefully acknowledge  the following individuals for granting us permission to post the content on this page.

Marie-Line Germain,, PhD
Assistant Professor, Human Resources and Leadership
Western Carolina University