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Volume 5, Issue 3 / 2010
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From the Editor
Mihai C. Bocarnea

This special issue of the International Journal of Leadership Studies is dedicated to the 20th anniversary of the Fall of Communism in Europe. The staggering revolutionary wave sweeping through the Eastern Block in 1989 included the election of the first non-Communist government in Poland (September), the demise of the Communist Party in Hungary (October), the Fall of the Berlin Wall (November 9), the Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia and the Bulgarian Upheaval (November), and the violent Romanian Revolution (December). Subsequently, in 1990 and 1991, Lithuania, Estonia, and Latvia declared their independence from the Soviet Union. The USSR itself, fundamentally changed by Gorbachev’s glasnost and perestroika, eventually collapsed in 1991 when the dissolution of the Soviet Union became final. This profound political reformation of the former Eastern Block triggered significant social and economic changes in these countries and lengthy and difficult transitions to democracy and market economy.

Although late, the scholarly interest in organizational leadership studies in the former Communist countries has steadily increased. More and more studies employing qualitative and quantitative research methods have explored organizational leadership phenomena in these countries. Recognizing this trend 20 years after the tumultuous events of 1989, the 11th annual International Leadership Association Global Conference, the largest conference in the field, took place in Prague in November 2009. At this conference, Vaclav Havel, leader of the Velvet Revolution, was named ILA’s 2009 Distinguished Leader.

This IJLS special issue contains leadership studies from Bulgaria, Estonia, Lithuania, Romania, and Russia. [more]

Testing Servant Leadership Theory with Bulgarian Students
Mihai C. Bocarnea & Marina Dimitrova

This study tests Patterson’s (2003) theory of servant leadership in the Bulgarian contexts investigating the causal relationships between the seven constructs in the servant leadership model. University students’ perceptions of servant leader characteristics were assessed using the Dennis and Bocarnea’s (2005) servant leadership instrument. Results support the causal relationships among servant leadership constructs.  Furthermore, the leader-follower gender similarity does not have an influence on these constructs. The study pioneers servant leadership research in Bulgaria, a country experiencing an uneasy transition to democracy and market economy after the collapse of Communism. [more]
Leadership in Estonian Organizations During Transition
Krista Tuulik & Ruth Alas
During the 20 years following the fall of communism, Estonia faced turbulent times as they declared independence and gained recognition both politically and economically. To understand characteristics of leaders during these turbulent times, two leadership surveys were carried out in Estonia in 2001 and 2003, evaluating actual leader behavior and desirable leader behavior, respectively. The methodology of the surveys used the Global Leadership and Organizational Behavior Effectiveness (GLOBE) research program, a worldwide, multi-phase and multi-method project. The results showed Estonians expect their leaders to be charismatic - value based-team oriented and participative; the leaders are not expected to be humane, self-protective and autonomous. The leaders’ actual behaviors were considered charismatic - value based and team oriented, but not participative and too autonomous. This paper concentrates on the qualitative part of the research and on analyzing the interviews with the leaders of that era. [more]
Leadership Attitudes in Lithuanian Business Organizations: Evidence and Perspectives
Danuta Diskiene, Albinas Marcinskas & Asta Stankeviciene
This paper presents an analysis of management transformations in Lithuania, resulting in a response to global challenges and their influence on leadership attitudes. The emphasis is on the results of a survey that reveals the orientation of the mindset of leaders who expressed their principles and attitudes to leadership practice. The level of importance Lithuanian managers’ place on leadership function and their managerial competency in implementing this function was analyzed, demonstrating the dominant leadership attitudes in business organizations. The concept of this paper is based on the integration of leadership theory and actual practices. [more]
Leading the Change for Quality Enhancement: A Romanian Cultural Perspective
Carmen Aida Hutu
This article comments on leadership and quality enhancement in Romanian companies from a cultural perspective based on the results of three studies performed by the author related to cultural orientations in Romania. Key cultural orientations (as described by Hall, Hofstede, Schein, and Rosinski) are used to debate leading cultural changes needed most in Romanian organizations in order to effectively implement quality management to increase performance and competitiveness. Also, considering the context of Romania’s ongoing process of European integration, the results of the author’s research on key cultural values in Romanian companies are mirrored in relation to a synthesis of dominant European organizational values and their role in creating a culture of quality. Within this framework, it was determined that the change processes needed in Romanian companies must be oriented by a more inspirational, transformational leadership—moving the center of gravity from conservatism, high context communication, polychronism, high power distance, lack of transparency and confidence, and inward orientation to a proactive attitude, dynamism and flexibility, trust, openness, higher valuation of time and performance through innovation, and continuous improvement. [more]
Building Strategic Leadership Competencies: The Case of Unilever
Maarten Van Beek & Mikhail Grachev
This article explores strategic leadership resources of a global firm doing business in post-Communist countries. The authors analyze Unilever’s experience in building leadership competencies and discuss application of its “Leadership Growth Profile” concept to a specific Russian business environment. The article presents results of interviews with company managers and displays culture-specific adjustments to leadership development in Russia. [more]

Please note: Views and opinions expressed in the articles published in the International Journal of Leadership Studies (IJLS) represent each author's research and viewpoint and do not necessarily represent IJLS or its sponsors. IJLS and its sponsors make no representations about the accuracy of the information contained in published manuscripts and disclaims any and all responsibility or liability resulting from the information contained in the IJLS.

The International Journal of Leadership Studies is a publication of the Regent University School of Business & Leadership | © 2010
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