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Successful leadership

Module information>

Academic Direction
Queen Mary University of London
Also part of
Global MBA
Modes of Study

This module prepares students for strategic leadership and transformational roles in organisations.

The role of a manager requires organising, controlling, planning and motivating others to perform the work of the organisation.

The module contributes to the programme as it examines a variety of literature (including: articles, cases, novels, illustrations, and discussion) to develop student appreciation of the breadth of leadership.

In preparing students for strategic leadership, this module helps students identify and analyse their personal leadership styles and critically evaluate these, and is designed to help students develop and hone their personal leadership philosophies.

This module explores leadership as a relational and global phenomenon and describes, contrasts, and explains a variety of leadership theories.

The module also explores the relevance and significance of current ideas concerning leadership and how they fit with organisations alongside contemporary expectations of people in organisations. Theoretical approaches will be supplemented by empirical evidence on leadership, leadership in practice and the links between these and organisational performance.

The module will also explore applications in real-world contexts based on case studies.

Topics covered

  • Introduction to Leadership
  • Leadership Styles
  • Leadership Environments
  • Developing Networks
  • Developing Leaders
  • Diversity and Leadership: Cross-Cultural Challenges
  • Communication and Leadership Failures
  • Leaders Taking Charge
  • Leadership & Ethics
  • Leadership & Change

Learning outcomes

If you complete the module successfully, you should be able to:

  • describe and assess key theories of leadership.
  • articulate how leadership theories and practices play out in organisations.
  • critically evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches to leadership in a variety of organisational settings.
  • assess and manage resolution of problems arising from different leadership styles in particular organisational contexts.
  • discuss how organisations are transformed through strategic leadership.
  • assess, with justification, own leadership style and critically analyse the challenges that own leadership style presents in their organisational setting.
  • reflect on leadership style in own practice, with justification of his/her reflective process.
  • study and use resources for learning, including making professional use of others (students and tutors) in support of self-directed learning.
  • demonstrate time management skills (including writing in a time constrained setting).
  • apply critical and analytical skills with regard to the idea and application of concepts concerning leadership challenges.
  • Effectively communicate (in a variety of styles/formats, including professional presentation of research as well as self-reflection).
  • demonstrate information and digital literacy skills.
  • Critically self-reflect on own leadership style and approach.
  • apply research skills in the area of leadership.


This module is assessed by:

Coursework (30% weighting):

  • There is one item of coursework for this module which contributes to the final assessment mark for this module:
  • Coursework: a written essay of a maximum of 2,000 or 2,500 words (deadline – weeks 9-12) The coursework is designed to check student progress, extend and reinforce concepts covered and also test individual performance.

Portfolio (70% weighting):

  • The leadership portfolio is the final piece of assessment to submit:
  • A portfolio of 6,000 words maximum consisting of a series of online exercises to complete.

Essential reading

The following is provided as part of the module materials after you register:

  • Nahavandi, A. The art and science of leadership. (Harlow: Pearson, 2014) 7th edition. Chapter 10 Developing leaders.
  • Yukl, G. Leadership in organizations. (Harlow: Pearson, 2013) 8th edition. Chapter 15 Leadership development.