Twenty-first century companies are in great need of innovative leaders. They need men and women who know how to put new ideas to work effectively and responsibly in every corner of their organizations. They need people who will define what's next in our markets and societies.
But that doesn't mean that all business schools must develop the same types of leaders. Different businesses will need different kinds of talent. To develop a wide-ranging workforce, business schools must first understand how all aspects of their programs--their curricula, their faculty, their locational advantages, their cultures--work together. Only with that understanding can they forge fresh approaches to developing innovative leadership.
Unfortunately, while virtually every business school teaches leadership in one way or another, I believe that there isn't much differentiation among schools in the kinds of leaders they produce. At least, these differentiations are seldom explicitly stated. In fact, we have tended to blur these distinctions in our programs by failing to specify one set of leadership styles and capabilities over another.
I think that's a mistake. Business schools bring different strengths to the table and can foster business innovation in unique and interesting ways. At the Haas School of...