The Chronicle of Higher Education - Many years ago, I was offered an academic leadership position but turned it down. I spent several anxious nights making that decision. After all, I had just survived the tortuous and time-consuming process that led to the offer. Furthermore, the location of the campus was closer to my extended family, the responsibilities attracted me, and the salary was what I wanted.
It is no new insight to any reader of The Chronicle that American higher education is in crisis. Actually, I don't recall when we were not, even if some of us did not recognize it to be so. But the pressure on campus leaders today is greater than many of us who hold the title of chair, dean, or president can ever recall.
That's all the more reason to assess carefully, when you're offered a leadership position, if it's a good match for who you are.
David D. Perlmutter is a professor in and dean of the College of Media & Communication at Texas Tech University. He writes the "Career Confidential" advice column for The Chronicle. His book on promotion and tenure was published by Harvard University Press in 2010. Browse the previous columns in the Admin 101 series here.