Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Leadership Studies


There is considerable research and literature on crisis management, especially as it applies to formal organizations dealing with crisis. This literature focuses mainly on the for-profit sector of organizations; attempting to provide useful frameworks to facilitate understanding of how to react at different points in different crisis situations. The great majority of this literature can be divided into two sections: (1) preparation for and (2) reactions to different crisis situations. The dynamic which is missing from the crisis management literature is leadership. Crisis management literature takes an active view towards the preparation for crisis and identification process of a crisis,but falls short in the area of action during the process of resolving an actual crisis. This crisis management literature provides a reaction based approach to taking action during the crisis situation.

The purpose of choosing the Wei-jiTheory of Crisis Leadership was to learn more about crisis situations, about leadership and to understand the most effective way of reaching positive resolution in crisis. Therefore, this Senior Project addresses several aspects which arise in crisis situations. Aspects are outlined and presented as different variables in this theory. They include: the leader's "power," the leader's "level of directiveness," the leader's "level of supportiveness," the group's "degree of cohesion," and the group's "commitment to task."

There remain other aspects of crisis leadership which this author yields to future generations of leadership scholars. This theory and the senior project as a whole, does not attempt to answer every aspect of crisis leadership. Rather, it begins an exploration into the realm of crisis leadership and attempts to better understand the phenomenon of leadership within crisis situations. Hopefully, this will provide a solid base for greater understanding and study of this subject which will lead to better leadership.