Read this book: From Manager to Visionary

Kent J. Kille’s new work From Manager to Visionary: The Secretary-General of the United Nations is an insightful look at character and leadership among the seven past Secretaries-General of the United Nations. His study fills a critical gap in the existing literature by addressing the impact of each office holder’s leadership style apart from the international politics of their day.

In introducing the goal behind his study, Kille suggests a division that marks previous works on the Secretaries General. Many scholars overlook the specific character of the individual office holders, the vast majority suggesting the political conditions overwhelmed any significant differences. Others suffer from what Kille describes as the “super Secretary-General syndrome,” praising all seven past Secretaries-General equally. Though calls for a study of leadership styles appear in the literature, none offer the type of analysis which Kille provides. Kille’s quantitative analysis offers a predictive framework within which an office holder is likely to respond to the constraints placed on them by the Charter, member states or events. At the same time, he offers his assessment without making the subject overly academic or inaccessible to the layman.

Drawing on leadership metrics developed by Margaret Hermann, Kille codes for six personal characteristics (responsivity, belief in personal influence, need for relationships, need for recognition, supranationalism and problem-solving emphasis) revealed by Secretaries-General in their remarks at unscripted press conferences. He weighs these against three proposed leadership styles – managerial, strategic and visionary. In Kille’s view, managers will be “constraint respecters,” strategists will be “constraint accommodators,” and visionary Secretaries-General will tend to be “constraint challengers.”

The UN Secretary-General operates through numerous avenues to manage or influence the work of the organization. Broadly speaking, these include shaping the organization’s agenda through his strategic political position and by making political statements, involvement in the peaceful settlement of disputes, and in the administration of UN peacekeeping missions. For comparative study, Kille reviews in detailed case studies the ways in which the higher scoring Secretaries-General within each leadership style used these opportunities for influence. In Kille’s assessment, Kurt Waldheim represents the more managerial Secretary-General, Dag Hammarskjöld the more visionary, and Kofi Annan the more “strategic” in their respective approaches.

The case studies show a significant if not perfect match between Kille’s predictive framework and Hammarskjöld, Waldheim and Annan’s actual behavior while in office. The slight deviations suggest some necessary refinements to the leadership metrics and styles which Kille initially proposed. Nonetheless, even when the observed behavior occurred did not match entirely with the Kille’s predicted behavior, the officeholders never shifted far from their predicted preferred style. Given that Kille only provides for three leadership styles and given the human nature of the seven office holders, this would not be unexpected. But Kille’s proposed continuum, from manager to visionary, holds true very well. Managerial Waldheim may have occasionally acted, according to Kille, as a strategist, but never as a visionary. Likewise, Hammarskjöld never acted as a manager in facing contraints to his leadership. Though he does not provide case studies for them, Kille suggests that Trygve Lie, Javier Perez de Cuellar and Boutros Boutros-Ghali would likewise never deviate far from their respective predicted styles. (U Thant is an exception that Kille acknowledges and describes in further detail.)

No one leadership style, Kille concludes, should be preferred for the post of Secretary Generalship. A rotation of managers, strategists and visionaries would maintain member states’ confidence in the United Nations as an organization and in turn allow it to evolve in the governance of international relations.

Further research could refine the leadership styles Kille has proposed and more accurately explain the approach each Secretary-General took to the office in relation to the events of his day. At a minimal, Kille and others should attempt to refine the metrics in ways that describe Secretaries-General’s style so as to address Thant’s “outlier” characteristics, perhaps by proposing additional leadership styles that allow for more refined predictions. More revealing would be studies that successfully relate the styles of individual Secretaries-General within the political environments in which they find themselves. Such might employ counterhistoricals to the extent possible, if only as an intellectual indulgence. How might the managerial Thant have addressed the U.S. action in Iraq? How would Annan have responded to Khruschev’s shoe-banging? Would Boutros-Ghali have been as visionary during the 1973 oil embargo?

From Manager to Visionary is a new seminal work in the literature and clearly earns Kille a place in the company of Erskine Childers, Sir Brian Urquhart and Edward Luck as an authority on the Secretaries-General. His contribution will influence how other scholars describe the impact of past Secretaries-General and, for many of us today, will undoubtedly be a key resource that we turn to in assessing the words and actions of Secretary Ban Ki-moon over the next decade.

2 Responses to “Read this book: From Manager to Visionary

  1. Finance and accounting programs in Egypt

    […]although web-sites we backlink to below are considerably not related to ours, we feel they’re essentially worth a go as a result of, so have a look[…]

  2. الهوية الوطنية

    […]one of our guests lately advised the following website[…]

  3. كلية إدارة الأعمال في مصر

    […]check beneath, are some totally unrelated websites to ours, nevertheless, they may be most trustworthy sources that we use[…]

  4. Can antibiotics be used to treat histoplasmosis stromectol over the counter cvs?

    How can I make my liver powerful stromectol uk?

  5. Does Vitamin D Help asthma symbicort side effects?

    What is the safest asthma inhaler budesonide inhaler dosing?

  6. What cough syrup is good for COPD?

    What foods can trigger asthma attacks?

  7. Should you exhale before using inhaler albuterol inhaler dose?

    Is oxygen level of 94 ok?

  8. How to clean your Pari Vios nebulizer?

    Do you cough up phlegm with asthma?

  9. Why was Primatene Mist banned ventolin inhaler coupons?

    What are the long term side effects of Flexeril?

  10. fue says:


    […]just beneath, are quite a few completely not associated websites to ours, however, they may be surely really worth going over[…]

  11. buying from canadian pharmacies?

    cialis 5 mg canada pharmacy?

  12. bringing prescription drugs into mexico?


  13. Recommended Site

    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  14. Educational Activities for pharmacy students at future university

    […]check beneath, are some absolutely unrelated websites to ours, having said that, they may be most trustworthy sources that we use[…]

  15. Can a woman get trichomoniasis on her own?

    Is yogurt a good probiotic?

  16. How do you know if a parasite is in your brain Azithromycin 500 mg?

    Should I be worried if I have parasites?

  17. Do antibiotics strengthen or weaken your immune system?

    Can bacterial diseases be transmitted through contact with urine?

  18. Course Add/Drop Policy

    […]Every once in a even though we opt for blogs that we read. Listed beneath would be the most recent internet sites that we choose […]

  19. FCIT Undergraduate Programs

    […]usually posts some pretty fascinating stuff like this. If you’re new to this site[…]

  20. Information Technology Education

    […]although sites we backlink to below are considerably not associated to ours, we really feel they may be essentially worth a go by means of, so possess a look[…]

  21. How do you make him crazy about you without talking??

    Does sleeping late reduce sperm count?

  22. fue says:


    […]The info mentioned in the article are a few of the top out there […]

  23. QS Stars says:

    QS Stars

    […]here are some links to web pages that we link to simply because we believe they are worth visiting[…]

  24. Prof. Ebada Sarhan

    […]The info mentioned inside the article are a few of the best obtainable […]

  25. MBA admission requirements

    […]below you will find the link to some websites that we consider you must visit[…]

  26. How can I save my relationship??

    Why do men need to be strong Tadalafil 5 mg?

  27. برامج الدراسات العليا لطب الأسنان

    […]we came across a cool internet site that you just may well get pleasure from. Take a look for those who want[…]

  28. What is the strongest aphrodisiac overnighted cialis for men??

    Why am I losing strength in my legs cialis 5mg best price?

  29. How can I make my boyfriend feel special physically cialis vs viagra??

    Which type of kiss is best cialis 5mg price cvs?

  30. sv 388 says:

    sv 388

    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  31. cipit88 says:


    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  32. s128 says:


    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  33. 텐프로 says:


    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  34. FiverrEarn.Com

    […]although web sites we backlink to beneath are considerably not related to ours, we feel they’re truly worth a go by means of, so possess a look[…]

  35. Slot Online says:

    Slot Online

    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  36. tgslot says:


    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  37. pvp777 says:


    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  38. talent search

    […]below you will discover the link to some web sites that we think you ought to visit[…]

  39. amsterdam jobs

    […]Here are a number of the internet sites we advocate for our visitors[…]

  40. dubai jobs says:

    dubai jobs

    […]Every once inside a while we choose blogs that we study. Listed below are the most current web-sites that we opt for […]

  41. denver jobs says:

    denver jobs

    […]Here are a number of the websites we advise for our visitors[…]

  42. coba777 says:


    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  43. website design dundee

    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  44. paznokciowe says:


    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  45. do paznokci, says:

    do paznokci,

    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  46. gel polish, says:

    gel polish,

    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  47. boca777 says:


    Read this book: From Manager to Visionary «

  48. เว็บสล็อตออนไลน์

    blog topic

  49. live amateur webcams

    […]although web sites we backlink to beneath are considerably not associated to ours, we really feel they are essentially really worth a go by way of, so have a look[…]

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.