Brent Davies, in Chapter 5 of this book, argues for the development of the strategically focused school. Key to that strategic focus is the quality of the strategic leadership in the school. If we are to support and enhance the development of strategic leadership in schools, we need to be able to build a framework of understanding of what strategic leadership might comprise. This chapter will consider what organisational abilities and individual characteristics can be associated with strategic leadership. The chapter does not purport to describe a new form of leadership, such as transformational or instructional leadership, but analyses the strategic element in the leadership repertoire. It identifies characteristics of individuals who are successfully undertaking a strategic leadership role or skill. However, there is a difficulty in isolating out the strategic element of good leadership as B. Davies (2003: 303) has identified:

The difficulty in reviewing the literature, or interpreting the results of my current research, is that it is not always easy to distinguish the characteristics of ‘good leadership’ from those of ‘strategic leadership’.