Leadership seems to be a problem. There appears to be widespread agreement on its necessity, but little agreement on its substance. This difficulty is graphically illustrated in the recent Report of the National Commission on Excellence in Educational Administration (NCEEA, 1987) which claims at one and the same time that ‘A revolution in education requires competent, skilled, visionary leadership’ and that there is ‘a lack of definition of good educational leadership’ (p.xvi). Leaders in educational administration seem to be acknowledging the importance of an activity they cannot define.