Leadership in Abundance

Functional Leadership at Unity College

Leadership Approach

Unity College leaders need access to information and personnel need access to decision-makers. A flatter administrative structure allows day-to-day realities to better influence strategic decisions. One-on-one relationships between students, faculty, and staff are central to the Unity College value proposition. A more horizontal organization helps establish students at the heart of the community and keeps executive administration closer to that heart. A flatter organization also makes sure that there are opportunities to develop leadership at all levels of the organization.

Unity College expects empowered and accountable leadership.

Functional leadership is an approach that leans heavily on a team of mutually invested senior leaders. Rather than identifying a leader’s role by reporting lines, in a functional leadership model senior leaders are identified by their area(s) of primary functional responsibility. The senior level team shares overall responsibility for meeting strategic institutional goals, establishing campus culture, managing risk, and—most importantly—stewarding the mission of the college.

Within the senior leadership team, individuals serve as first among equals or chief officer in a given functional area of primary responsibility. The language of “chief officer” is familiar in the role of “Chief Academic Officer” and “Chief Financial Officer.” Chief officer is not a rank; it is a role.

The leadership team may have deans working with directors as first among equals. Different rank, parallel role. Chief of Staff serves as an extension of the office of the President and coordinates among the other chief officers.

A first among equals approach means being responsive to changing conditions; an individual’s capacity to serve will, at times, seem to stretch the boundaries of a strict job description in order to place project and need above reporting structure. First among equals means shared successes and shared failures. Celebrations are inclusive. Challenges, vulnerabilities, and mistakes are treated with transparency.

Track Progress

Leadership in Abundance: Chief Fundraising Officer

Email February 10, 2016 TO: Employee-news FROM: Dr. Melik Peter Khoury DATE: February 10, 2016 SUBJECT: Leadership in Abundance: Chief Fundraising Officer — Effective February 14th 2016 ATTACHMENT: Chief Fundraising Officer Job Description Colleagues, Leadership in...

What it Means to be a Chief Officer at Unity College

Leadership Approach Unity College leaders need access to information and personnel need access to decision-makers.  A flatter administrative structure allows day-to-day realities to better influence strategic decisions.  One-on-one relationships between students,...

How to Work… In Abundance

Functional leadership in abundance isn’t always intuitive for everyone–especially for those of us who came of age in a largely dysfunctional industry like higher education.  The faculty, staff, and students of Unity College are eager to share responsibility and...

Welcome Diane Ray, New Chief Marketing Officer

I’m writing today to announce the successful conclusion to our recent search for Chief Marketing Officer. Diane K. Ray will serve as Unity College’s first Chief Marketing Officer. Ray brings a powerful combination of varied formal education, international marketing consulting in sustainability areas, and R&D innovation experience to this critical position.

A New Model for Higher Education

“I may not have all the answers, but I am dedicating my career to creating the space to reimagine higher education.  I invite current colleagues and new partners from across the world to work within that space to create a new model of higher education.” – Dr. Melik Peter Khoury, President, Unity College.

Fishbowl Talks

Unity Fishbowl Talks is a colloquium series for Unity College faculty and invited outside speakers to discuss ideas on pedagogy and to present their scholarly work.