Hello everyone, my name is Emily Rangel and I am a student at California State University Monterey Bay CSUMB. I am currently going into my senior year and working as an NPC intern through my field training program in Collaborative Human and Health Services.
Today’s opinion piece is inspired by Vu Le’s recent article “What does it look like to reinvent leadership radically?”. Vu makes great points and provides great examples of different leadership structures, including the drastic change in leadership at RVC, which is progressing to having 4 equal leadership roles! When I read of this structural change, I had to think back to some of the college classes I’ve taken.
My major, Collaborative Human Health Services, preaches and teaches collaboration. Collaboration is common in the workforce amongst staff; however, among leadership roles, collaboration is less often practiced; this may have to do with the hierarchy model of most workplaces. Which begs the question, why not have multiple executive director roles? To begin with, an executive director role typically is an overwhelming amount of work and most of the decision-making is done by one main person, which can add to the pressure and workload of this role. However, having a model with more than one person in the ED role could be more beneficial to nonprofit management since the work and sectors of the organization can be divided among multiple leaders. This also ensures that every part of an organization gets the same amount of attention and support needed to run smoothly. Additionally, having multiple EDs is a great way to practice collaboration and promote new ideas moving forward for the organization. With multiple people coming together to improve their organization, they can challenge their ideas and implementations to ensure they are well-executed. With the example of RVC, there may be more organizations to follow this model of multiple leadership roles.
Over the next several years, that leadership role continues to change and adapt and we will be able to more clearly see the impact of having one main role in leadership compared to the multiple roles. What do you see in the future for your organization? Do multiple leadership roles seem like something that could positively impact your organization? Additionally, if you are currently in a leadership role, would it benefit you to share the workload with others? Or have others to collaborate with?