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Transformational Leadership for the Helping Professions

Engaging Head, Heart, and Soul

Jean F. East

Publication Date - 29 October 2018

ISBN: 9780190912437

264 pages
6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

In Stock

Transformational Leadership for the Helping Professions combines both classic and current theories on leadership, with a philosophical lens about its meaning and practice in human services settings.


Twenty-first-century challenges abound for people in leadership roles in the helping professions (i.e., social work, nursing, teaching, public health, and social services). It is the mission of these professionals to facilitate change not only for consumers of their work, but also for organizations and communities. While many books written for human services leaders focus on leadership roles and tasks, Transformational Leadership for the Helping Professions explores growth in leadership, coupled with key competencies. The text also combines both classic and current theories on leadership, with a philosophical lens on its meaning and practice in human services settings. Social workers, nurses, teachers, public health workers, and community leaders will find the text to be a useful guide in strengthening their consideration of leadership theory while they practice in day-to-day work. Additionally, educators and students of leadership in the helping professions will gain a solid understanding of key facets of leadership practice within a framework that inspires a social justice, empowerment, and cultural humility perspective.


  • Shares leadership practices that can be used in organizational and communities settings
  • Combines theory with practices, discussion questions, and activities
  • Features case examples from helping and service professions

About the Author(s)

Jean F. East, PhD, MSW, is Professor in the Graduate School of Social Work at the University of Denver. Spanning four decades, her career in social work has been dedicated to work in organizations and communities for the increased well-being of society.


"East accentuates the most relevant leadership theories and incorporates them into practice for those in the helping professions. A must-read for social architects and leaders who aspire to make a lasting and positive difference in our society." -Juan Carlos Araque, PhD, Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Children Youth and Families, USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work, University of Southern California

"East has done a masterful job in gathering the most important and relevant theoretical underpinnings of leadership and applying them to the helping professions. The combination of conceptual and practical wisdom makes this book a must-read for social sector leaders of the 21st century." -Stephanie Cosner Berzin, PhD, MSSW, Dean, College of Social Sciences, Policy, and Practice, Simmons University; Co-author, Innovation from Within: Redefining How Nonprofits Solve Problems

"Jean East understands that content expertise alone is not enough to empower and help our clients, patients, and staff. In this book, she deftly combines theory with concrete tools and exercises to help us develop the leadership skills we need to lead societal and institutional change." -China Brotsky, Director of Operations and Finance, SumOfUs

Table of Contents


    Chapter One: A Leadership Framework
    Chapter Two: Leadership Theory: Embracing Theory as Bridge For Change
    Chapter Three: Where Is Leadership? It Is Everywhere
    Chapter Four: Leadership Begins with You
    Chapter Five: Leading with Heart and Soul
    Chapter Six: Leading with Cultural Responsiveness and Ethics
    Chapter Seven: Enabling Change and Innovation
    Chapter Eight: Visioning a Future While Living in the Present
    Chapter Nine: Promoting Culture and Teamwork
    Chapter Ten: The Journey Forward


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