Four-Cornered Leadership: A Framework for Making Decisions, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Four-Cornered Leadership

A Framework for Making Decisions, 1st Edition

By John Roland Schultz

Productivity Press

277 pages | 35 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9781466592896
pub: 2013-08-06
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W. Edwards Deming once stated that the job of management is not supervision but leadership. He also concluded that capable leaders were those who understood and applied the system of profound knowledge.

Four-Cornered Leadership: A Framework for Making Decisions examines the system of profound knowledge and identifies the competencies that set the stage for its successful application. Illustrating the relationship between leaders and followers, it analyzes each of the four pillars that support Deming's system, in relation to prevailing management and organizational theory. It describes a set of competencies based on these core principles that convey very different assumptions about people and organizations.

The book supplies you with a new way to view leadership that is based on learning and continual modification in response to prevailing conditions. Highlighting the connection between the four elements and an individual’s ability to lead, it presents methods that are applicable in any organizational setting—including government, industry, and education. Presenting information in bite-sized chunks supported by charts and graphs, the book provides you with a clear understanding of:

  • The importance of system interdependencies
  • Why people behave as they do
  • How people learn, develop, and improve
  • The variability of work
  • How to manage interaction dynamics

The book examines the complexity of human nature and relates it to group and organizational dynamics. Filled with examples, case studies, and tables, this is the ideal guide for leaders trying to adopt the principles of quality management and continuous improvement. It is also a suitable reference for newly appointed leaders, managers, and supervisors who have excellent technical skills but have not been exposed to the emotional aspects that typify a capable leader.

Table of Contents

Leadership Defined

Leadership and Profound Knowledge

Leadership Competencies

Leadership, Power, and Followers

Leadership and Management

Leadership Approaches

Leadership Implications

Understand the Importance of System Interdependencies


The Organization as an Open System

Processes are the Culprit not the People

Coordinating and Controlling Processes



The Leaders Role

Understand Why People Behave as They Do


Complexity of Human Nature

Group and Organizational Dynamics

Organization Setting and Structure

Task Complexity and Character

Interpersonal Skills and Attributes

Group Norms and Cohesiveness

Group Development

Group Interaction Patterns

Group Communication

Group Decision Making

Group Task Accomplishment

Group Support

Conflict, Competition, and Cooperation

Lessons Learned

Understand How People Learn, Develop, and Improve


Learning is about Theory

Organizational Learning

Learners Are Not All Alike

Growth Comes From Lessons Learned

Reinforcing and Sustaining Learning

Understand the Variability of Work


Data Provide the Basis for Decision-Making

System Ups and Downs are a Matter of Routine

Visualizing Process Variability

Process Behavior Chart

Interpreting Process Behavior

Tampering Can Be Costly

So What?

Give Meaning, Purpose, and Direction to the Job at Hand


Purpose and Why It Is Important

Creating the Purpose

The Process and How to Make it Happen




Communicating the Purpose

Anchoring the Purpose through Constancy of Action

Interpreting the Organization’s Purpose through Planning

Appreciating that the Job At Hand Has Just Begun

Manage the Dynamics, Interdependencies, and Interaction


Plan for the Future

Create Less Structure and Share Tasks

Delegate and Coordinate

Problem Solve and Make Decisions

Monitor Results

Drive Out Fear

Build Trust

Final Thoughts


Assess Your Ability as a Profound Leader

Affinity Technique

Force Field Analysis




About the Author

John Roland Schultz is an independent management consultant and retired college professor. For 20 years, he taught management and supervisory development courses and was a program director overseeing an advanced technical certificate in quality management. Prior to teaching, his work experience included 25 years as a consultant, technical services manager, and new product development engineer. He has performed doctoral study in adult education, has a master of science degree in management, and has undergraduate degrees with a focus on industrial management and organizational behavior.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Management Science
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Quality Control