chapter  3
30 Pages

Understanding the Development of Leadership Complexity Through Latent Growth Modeling

ByDavid V. Day, Charles E. Lance

Growth . . . change . . . development. These concepts are fundamental for much of the thinking and writing about leadership. However, little attention has been given to explicitly describing or explaining the leadership growth process. This is surprising because growth is endemic to life. All living organisms grow from birth through maturity. Humans even demonstrate cognitive gains and improvements well into adulthood and old age (Baltes, 1987). However, what is meant by the term growth? How is growth related to development? What is known about how to conceptualize and model growth? Furthermore, what is the relevance of growth and development to enhancing organizational leadership? These are key questions that this chapter will address. The overarching purpose is to expound on the concept of growth and to link it to the meaning, measurement, and modeling of leadership development. The chapter concludes with three specific examples of how sophisticated modeling efforts could be used to understand and evaluate the leader development process.