This week we dive into the field of organizational leadership with CSU Global instructor Dr. Dina Samora, who is also the program coordinator for our B.S. in Organizational Leadership and M.S. in Organizational Leadership. Read on for an inside view of the field, and how this can be a great career choice.
What can students do with a degree in organizational leadership?
The concepts learned in the organizational leadership program can be applied in many areas. Students prepare to become business leaders in a wide variety of organizations, in both management of the organization and the leadership of people. Effective leadership through motivating people, executing change, and strategic development are a few of the important concepts they'll learn. Those are valuable skills in any industry.
What does a typical day look like for a professional in the field?
An organizational leader in any organization can expect to spend a lot of time planning and strategizing. This is because they will lead the human element of the organization, lead change effectively, monitor the progress of the organization, and so on, all of which requires a sound strategy to be developed beforehand.
Specific activities that the organizational leader will perform vary depending on the organization itself. Community outreach, partnerships, and mergers may all be part of the day-to-day in certain organizations.
How valuable is an organizational leadership degree on a resume?
Hiring managers reviewing an applicant with an organizational leadership degree look to fill management positions at various levels. It's especially helpful when applying to jobs in human resources, training and development, departmental directors, higher education, healthcare administration, military leadership, and many others.
Tell us about the kind of personality that succeeds in the field.
Employees who normally succeed in the field of organizational leadership are productive, motivational, ethical, visionary (taking the big picture view), decisive, communicative, collaborative, accountable, adaptable, and self-aware. They exude confidence, motivate employees, develop relationships, and demonstrate trustworthiness. They should be leadership-minded, as opposed to management-minded. They should also be very
skilled in conflict resolution.
What changes have you observed in organizational leadership?
In the past 20 years, the structure, complexity, and interaction of organizational leadership has changed. Rapid changes in technology have redefined how teams interact with their leaders. In addition, organizational changes through more decentralized structure have empowered followers to become a part of the decision-making process. This takes the focus off of the "leader," exchanging it for a shared responsibility in leading the organizations.
How do you think the field will change moving forward?
Organizations will continue toward a flatter, continued decentralization of businesses. The younger generations greatly value a shared environment of decision making and planning, and in the next 20 years these generations will become the organizational leaders. They have only known life with technology. For them it is an extension of the way they communicate and interact. This will change the way organizations interrelate, and we'll see changes in the way that leaders lead.
About Dr. Dina Samora
Dr. Dina Samora has more than 30 years' experience in the fields of organizational leadership and education, spanning both for-profit and nonprofit organizations. She has served as mentor, manager, leader, and entrepreneur, and now serves as professor, curriculum developer, and program coordinator at Colorado State University-Global Campus. Dr. Samora seeks to improve the online experience for adult learners.