Followership is a particularly important topic for organisations, consultants, and scholars aiming to improve the performance of leaders through leadership development. This is because followership as a concept takes us beyond the world of the individual leader, into the crucial relationships that influence leadership and organizational performance.
As for leadership, followership is both powerful and has its toxic downsides. Reflecting on this power and toxicity is key to understanding how followership may be impacting on the organisation as well as what can practically be changed to improve leadership and the development of high performing organisations.
ILA’s Leadership Development Member Community is proud to bring you two outstanding presenters to share their experience of working at the intersection of leadership development and followership. Wendy M. Edmonds author of inTOXICating Followership (Emerald Group Publishing, 2021) and Marc Hurwitz author of Leadership is Half the Story: A Fresh Look at Followership, Leadership, and Collaboration (University of Toronto Press, 2015) will share their insights into how followership can be practically implemented immediately to improve leadership. They will also address what happens when followership becomes toxic and offer actions that mitigate the risks of toxic followership.
Wendy M. Edmonds, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor in the College of Business at Bowie State University, the oldest Historically Black College and University in Maryland. She is Chair of the ILA Followership Member Community – the largest followership research and practitioner group in the world. Recognized internationally as a scholar-practitioner in followership, an emerging field of study in organizational leadership, Wendy is the author of inTOXICating Followership (Emerald Group Publishing, 2021). She has also worked in the public and private sectors and with government agencies. Her most recent research focuses on the lived experiences of victims of domestic violence in relation to followership and the impact of spirituality. She holds a doctorate from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, a Master of Science from Johns Hopkins University–Carey Business School, and a Bachelor of Science from Bowie State University.
Marc Hurwitz, Ph.D. is co-author of the best-seller Leadership is Half the Story (University of Toronto, Rotman-Press) and Followership Education (Jossey-Bass) and co-founder of FliP University – FliPing leadership on its head with innovative blended professional development. Marc is a professor at the University of Waterloo’s Conrad School of Entrepreneurship & Business teaching leadership, followership, entrepreneurship, and consulting. He is the Immediate Past Chair of the ILA Followership Member Community. His PhD is in cognitive neuroscience with additional graduate degrees in math, physics, and business. He also has many years corporate and entrepreneurial experience in product marketing, HR, actuarial and IT. Although, as a kid, he dreamed of being a theoretical physicist or one of the Beatles, his path in life keeps pulling him back to his love of people, learning, and teaching.
Robin Roberts, DM, is an educator and human resource practitioner with over 40 years of experience in organizational development. She specializes in customizing and designing programs and services in training and development with a primary focus on leadership, equity and inclusion, organizational socialization and membership, cross-cultural communication, and career kinetics. She has spent the last 15 years pioneering research and technology that enhance human energy and performance. Her passion is in helping others grow personally and professionally and to be valuable contributors where they live, learn, and earn. She earned a Doctorate of Management with a concentration in Organizational Leadership, a Master of Arts in Organizational Management, and a Bachelor of Science in Business/Information Systems, all from the University of Phoenix.