Preface In many ways this book is as natural an outgrowth of my activi- ties as writing a book on complex analysis. I did a great deal of work learning about the topic, and I felt I wanted to write the book that I wish had been available to me when I started my study. As I was con- templating becoming the head of a department, I would have profited from the kind of document I am writing now. It would certainly have been kept within easy reach during my first year as head, when I was cautiously feeling my way. Even as a graduate student I might have read a book like this, and I definitely would have as a new faculty member in my first department. I have always been curious how de- partments run, and I was never certain whether my department was typical or unusual. As stated in the title, this book is a personal view of the office of head. Like everyone else, I am influenced by what has happened to me, what I have done, and what I have seen in my career as a faculty member and as a department head. I fervently believe that what I write about here applies to many other departments, not just my own. Yes, I will tell you many of the things I do as a a department head. No, this does not mean that I think you should do what I do. If there is one thing I have learned as a department head, it is that problems connected with people seldom have unique solutions. Problems involving people, however, are uniquely defined by that per- son, the place where they are, and the time in which they live. So even though something works for me, it might not work for you. You might also solve a problem in a way that makes you feel more comfortable than anything I propose. Maybe your solution is better. Write me a letter or email I'm interested. When I discuss important topics like tenure, salaries, and recruit- ing, I'll present what I see as the difficulties, the important questions, and the potential hazards to a department head when (s)he makes a decision in such an arena. But I'll also tell you what I think is a good course of action. If you're looking for an objective presentation, you'll vn
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