Essay Sample on Cultural Diversity: Its Impact on Leadership in Education

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  6
Wordcount:  1509 Words
Date:  2023-01-29


Cultural diversity refers to the existence of several different ethnic groups within one community, workplace, department, or organization. These are all people with different beliefs and practices which are so much connected to their ethnic cultures. Each time, therefore, this diversity of culture in people living or working together has its impacts.

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A good example is ways in which cultural diversity affects leadership in the field of education and others related to this. There are many impacts of this diversity about how the leadership will be and its outcome. About this scope are problems associated with cultural diversity. Dr. Severide has been in a university leadership for a long time, and now someone is needed to replace her.


In this case study, the learned widow Dr. Severide managed to wade through from the assistant professor to the position of a chair at the time she is retiring. The issue which appears of great concern is that it is not yet known who can be the best person to replace Severide's position as the chair when she is retired. Some facts are that the other members and top leaders of the other departments in the University are not from the Caucasian origin and thus they have different perceptions and beliefs in matters to do with the succession of Dr. Severide as a chairperson of the University.

One of the people and top leaders from the Caucasian origin is Dr. Brian Worthers, who has got two of his brothers in different departments of this University. The other individual is Dr. Anna Montgomery, who has the origin from Scotland. The two had already taken up the positions that were occupied by Dr. Severide before she retired, but they are not permanent in the positions. There is still the need to make sure that vetting by the necessary board of the University and elections are conducted to get the best people who can occupy the leadership positions initially held by Dr. Severide (Ramthun, 2012). It becomes a problem when Dr. Severide feels like when asked by her dean Dr. Charles Williams to recommend an acting chair to take her place until the board comes up with a new chair but she wants Anna Montgomery and Brian Worthers who are top leaders in the positions she had been holding to decide between them the one who would become the acting chair.

From the case study, there is some leadership which appears to be so much dependent on the racial origin or ethnic community that one comes from. For example, Dr. Brian wants to do his best to ensure that two of his brothers get to power just because he is himself a top leader in the university departments. The power being exercised in this scenario is based on the area that one comes from and some particular people don't recognize the beliefs and cultural practices of others as necessary. It is against the policy of the University for an acting chair to be voted for as the next chair, and this is what Adam is aware of when he asks that Severide appoints the interim chair before the university faculty can come up with the right leaders after vetting and voting (Beth, 2012). This is to avoid leadership disputes as in the case where Dr. Severide says that she fears that it would be an easy thing to know who voted or did not vote for who something which may cause misunderstandings and discord for the losers of the votes. The university faculty wants as much as it can to accommodate all the ethnic groups in the leadership positions of the various departments in the University, but the problem is that the leaders and the other members are already biased in terms of the ethnicity or origin.

On the other hand, when it comes to the departmental values and the well-being of the leadership, there is a serious problem and erosion of the various departments in the University. This is because there is discrimination based on the ethnicity of an individual, and there are some leaders who want their people to benefit at the expense of others. The values of the departments are not being upheld in the most effective way to make sure that leadership is in the right manner (Bass, 2008). This discrimination in the leadership and favoritism of some ethnic groups and cultures are coming in even though some of the people who are being considered for some positions by the top leaders don't have all the necessary qualifications to make them ascend to such positions. For example, Dr, Worthers is known to be transgender, and the culture does not have to allow someone with such a record to head the University (Flores, 2014). Putting such people in top positions is like planning to weaken the leadership of the University something which may end up affecting the functionality and performance of the University in a very negative way.

There are indeed a lot of concerns that exist about the trust of the various members in the different departments of this University. The trust has also been divided in terms of the ethnic groups, and every person is just able to trust the people with similar cultural origin as them and not others, and this is one major thing affecting the University's leadership in a big way (Chisholm 2017). The retired chair herself does not trust the members, and she says that there might be a problem voting for someone as a chair because others will know who voted for whom. Some things I wish I knew about this University's leadership which is not provided in this presentation of the case is the strategies which are used to elect and or appoint the leaders of the University depending on the skills and qualifications and not the ethnic group. At least this would help to know whether there should be the impact of cultural diversity on the leadership decisions like who occupies which position and on which basis. The best thing to being done to fill the position of the chair would be serious vetting of the aspirants to identify the one who has an excellent vision for the University as well as determines the skills and qualifications which each one of the aspirants has. Elections should then be conducted fairly and equitably, and whoever legally tops should become the chair.


From the case study, there is a lot that is learned about how cultural diversity has affected leadership. The leadership today is not about the qualifications, skills, or experience that one has but instead based on the place of origin and culture of that person. This has affected the education and performance in most universities and other learning institutions, and thus a lasting solution to eradicate the application of cultural diversity in leadership needs to be sought.


Bass, B. M., & Bass, R. (2008). The Bass handbook of leadership: Theory, research, & managerial applications (4th Ed.). New York, NY: Free Press. ISBN: 9780743215527. Retrieved from,+B.+M.,+%26+Bass,+R.+(2008).+The+Bass+handbook+of+leadership:+Theory,+research,+%26+managerial+applications+(4th+Ed.).+New+York,+NY:+Free+Press.+ISBN:+9780743215527.&ots=Es_GxvqShJ&sig=NWPDBrIfj-2_SywFa4uMlubrh6U

Beth Sullivan, E., & Pagano, R. V. (2012). Relevant adult programs, resilient students, and retention-driven administration. New Directions for Higher Education, 159, 21-29. Beth Sullivan and Pagano describe a program that transitioned from completely decentralized to a fully centralized structure in response to both external and internal factors. The authors present a robust view of the alternatives. Retrieved from

Chisholm-Burns, M. A., Spivey, C. A., Hagemann, T., & Josephson, M. A. (2017). Women in leadership and the bewildering glass ceiling. American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy, 74(5), 312-324. The authors share their concerns on the state of women in leadership, especially in the field of higher education, pharmacy, and health care. Retrieved from

Flores, K. L., & Matkin, G. S. (2014). Take your own path: Minority leaders encountering and overcoming barriers in cultural community centers. Journal of Cultural Diversity, 21(1), 5. This study explores how ethnic minority leaders experienced and overcame obstacles as leaders of cultural community centers. Retrieved from

Jass, L. K. (2012). Practicing what we teach: Learning from experience to improve adult program administration. New Directions for Higher Education, 159, 55-63. Bethel University takes centralization and decentralization in slightly different directions by employing both across three distinct units in the school, including a distinctly adult-focused unit with emphasis on a distinct registration and records process and a distinct academic program management approach. Retrieved from

Ramthun, A. J., & Matkin, G. S. (2012). Multicultural shared leadership: A conceptual model of shared leadership in culturally diverse teams. Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies, 19(3), 303-314. Retrieved from

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