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• We interviewed twelve faculty about inclusion of spirituality topics in leadership instruction.
• We identified eight benefits, eight barriers, and twelve tactics or approaches to inclusion.
• Benefits included development of leadership skills for the diverse workplace.
• Barriers included proselytizing and potential misuse of power.
• Methods for inclusion of spirituality topics encompassed linking discussions to practice.
The purpose of this study was to explore faculty views on the inclusion of spiritual topics in graduate leadership and management programs, focusing on faculty experiences, perceived benefits and challenges, and teaching methods and principles in use. We interviewed twelve faculty members in leadership or management programs from eleven nonsectarian universities. Participants discussed eight benefits including the opportunity for whole person growth and skill development that would benefit leaders in a global workplace. Eight barriers to such inclusion were identified such as proselytizing and the misuse of power. The sampled instructors also made some suggestions for how to include spirituality topics, such as using respected resources and linking classroom discussions to practice. Overall, instructors' preference for including spiritual topics also varied in terms of explicit versus implicit and organic-emergent versus preplanned-structured approaches.
Journal: The International Journal of Management Education - Volume 12, Issue 3, November 2014, Pages 293–303