University faculty who move into the leadership position of department chair must be skilled in the art of compromise, writes David Evans, vice president for academic affairs and dean of the faculty at Buena Vista University in Iowa. These leaders must bridge the gap between administration and faculty, ensuring smooth operation of the department while addressing faculty concerns, Evans notes in this blog post. "[M]y main discovery was that the chair's mediating role also went the other way -- to advocate for, or at least make possible, the functioning of institutional policies and initiatives at the departmental level," he writes.

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