Leadership Assignment Examining Various Aspects Of Leadership & Management
In this leadership assignment, you are required to answer four questions:
- What is involved in being a successful leader?
- Can good leadership be developed, and if so, how?
- What distinguishes leadership from management?
- What have you personally learnt about leadership from your own experiences, on this course and elsewhere?
To be a successful leader one need to focus on delivering number of behaviors and traits to add success to the business. The leader needs to focus on higher standard and continuously push the boundaries of achieving future goals (Campion 2018). Various individual, contextual and relational leadership theories shows the way a person can be a successful leader, which includes various traits, skills, styles, approach and behavior.
Skills-Based Model Mumford
According to the Mumford the skills-based model theory of leader performance is one theory that shows various skills and knowledge of a person has direct impact on the performance of the leader similar as traits theories. A leader is able to perform well in the organization and successfully lead their leadership role through three core capabilities such as creative problem-solving skills, social judgement skills and knowledge. This means that to be a successful leader a person needs to have three skills along with various important leadership traits. According to Lopes (2019) creative problem solving is an important capability that needs to be seen in a successful leader, especially among the ones that are in the upper-level leadership positions. This is because leaders in today’s world need to solve complex problems that is arising from constantly changing external environment and changing demand. In addition to this, an efficient leader should be able to motivate and understand their team members and influence them to give their best to the organization. Moreover, there is a strong connection between performance of a leader and communication because a leader is successful when they are able to efficiently communicate the vision of the organization to the subordinates. Along with this, a successful leader needs to have strong social judgement skills such as perspective taking, social perceptiveness, behavioral flexibility and social performance. This means that an efficient leader needs to be socially open to be successful. Lastly, accumulation of information and knowledge is the most crucial aspect for a leader to be successful because with effective knowledge and information a leader will be able to solve complex problem and take correct decisions.
Lewin’s Leadership Styles
Along with leadership skill, Lewin has pointed out that various styles used by a leader also plays an important role in making a successful leader. This is because it defines the behavior of the leader that is perceived by the employees as positive or negative. To be an efficient and successful leader one needs to tailor the most influential leadership style towards the employees that can motivate them to work towards organizational goals. There are many styles that a leader uses to lead their subordinates and three of the most common style that Lewin pointed out are autocratic leadership, bureaucratic leadership and laissez faire leadership (Campion 2018). Success of a leadership style highly depends on the quality of influence that a leader has on their followers. According to, Lopes (2019) a leader is successful in his role using democratic leadership only if it is applied with highly skilled and experienced employees. This is because such leaders can reach productive decisions only when they participate with knowledgeable and motivated employees. Similarly, a leader is successful when using autocratic leadership style only when it leads a less knowledgeable and less creative team and the leader is the most knowledgeable member of the team. moreover, an autocratic leader is efficient in a situation when there is less time for making group decision. Similarly, the laissez faire leadership style is successful only when employees in the organization are highly motivated and have the ability to drive the work successfully on their own.
A leader is also highly successful when shows innovative work behavior and belief in bringing constant change efficiently in the workplace. A transformational leader belief in building trust, empowerment and work engagement within its team. thus, an efficient leader is believed to be highly innovative and drive work engagement to cultivate innovative work behavior (Li et al. 2019). This is because creating an innovative work culture that can help adapt to constant change enable the organization to gain competitive advantage over other firms. Boamah et al. (2018) has pointed out that a leader is successful if they use transformational leadership behavior because they have the ability to solve complex problem and stimulate innovative behavior that can deliver efficient business outcome. Thus, a transformational leadership behavior enables trust and motivated work engagement that can bring more energy, self-determination and empowerment among the employees and generate positive leadership outcome. This is because such leadership aloe individual consideration and stimulate inspiration among the employees instead of focusing on punishments.
Leadership is known for doing three things such as to create a vision, build alignment and deployment of vision. This means that good leadership within a person can be developed based on these three areas. In relation to creating a vision it is seen that a person can develop their ability to form new vision and improve on their leadership skills. Further, a leader needs to align with the subordinates and gather loyalty and of the employees to participate in the vision and articulate it to achieve it. Good leadership can be developed through this aspect as well where a leader can focus on engaging with its employees and gain commitment among its employees to work towards a common goal (Al Khajeh 2018). The third element of leadership that can help develop a good leader is deployment where the leader can make use of the resources efficiently to meet its strategic decisions. The deployment skills are yet another way a good leader can be developed. However, Al Khajeh (2018) has pointed out that the inherent quality and capability within a human cannot be changed. Even though practice can help develop leadership skills and improve the leadership in a person, yet the inherent human limitations cannot be changed and thus a good leader cannot be developed if a person lacks its inherent capability. This means that a good leadership, like all other skills can be developed only if it is inherent in the inner potential. This is leadership is a combination of character, competence and skills and in the absence of character, skills and competence development will not lead to a good leader. This shows that leadership is something that can be developed and worked at over time.
Transformational leadership is a relational leadership that can be used to develop good leadership in an organization. This is because it enables development of organizational vision and transforming the organization from failure to success (Li et al. 2019). For example, a leader can take new innovation and creativity in business over time to show their capability and intellectual stimulation. Adopting transformational leadership behavior will enable a leader to be able to create empowering conditions for their employees and foster critical thinking. Transformational leadership skill development is a way a leader can change their behavior in a positive way and support effective organizational development (Boamah et al. 2018). This can be done by the leader by indulging in influencing the employees to work effectively and involving them in decision making activity.
Further, leadership is determined by the character of a person and the traits they hold such as courage, competent, collaborative and heroism. According to the great man theory the leaders are great heroes and shows courage, reliability, understanding and determination. Thus, good leadership can be developed whereby a person in the organization needs to take up more responsibilities and take up risky decision. Moreover, it is also important to analyze information and be aware of the present situation to be able to anticipate problems on time and become a great problem solver (RÜZGAR 2019). This will enable them to develop skills that is seen in a great leader. This is yet another way good leadership can be developed whereby a person can become good leader by developing effective leadership traits. For example, an employee in a team work can show determination and understanding with other team members when implementing a decision and this enable him/her to develop necessary leadership traits.
In addition to traits development, a good leader can also be developed through development of skills that describe an effective leader. Group based leadership development helps a person to attain leadership skills through different activities and programs. Through group-based leadership a person is able to develop executive skill sets by providing productive feedback to each other and enhance interpersonal communication (Derecskei 2016). Moreover, through this approach a leader will be able to experience handling real world challenges and develop skills such as strategic skills, communication skill, problem solving skills and others. For example, an employee in a team can suggest better solutions to business problems and this enable them to show better problem-solving skill. This is yet another way good leadership with efficient skills can be developed in an organization. Developing effective skills of communication will enable alignment in the business among employees, which is one of the tangible aspects of leadership that can be developed.
The last way of developing a good leadership is through formal development that can help develop all aspects of leadership including character, competence and performance. This is because these aspects help in strengthening the connection between efforts of individual leaders and the systems. Other ways of developing an effective and good leader is through interpersonal learning, learning through experience and exchanging opinions and developing motivation. Both formal and informal approaches help in enhancing leadership behavior and can enable expanding their capabilities beyond their limits (Hechanova et al. 2018). For example, an organization can plan and implement leadership development programs for their employees for the development of leadership skills and behavior.
Management is defined as a way in the organization that is used to deal with and control people or thing. it is the coordination and administration of activities to achieve goals including setting of business strategies, coordinating staffs and others. According to Liphadzi et al. (2017) management is referred to as a path of leading a project in the organization from inception to execution, which includes planning, execution and managing resources, employees and project scope. Management is further considered as a factor of production along with other factors such as machines, materials and money. The major task of management in an organization includes marketing and innovation. Algahtani (2014) has further defined management as a process of controlling and managing the activities in the organization irrespective of size and type. Management is defined by characteristics such as goal-oriented, pervasive, group activity, dynamic function, intangible force and others.
Leadership on the other hand is defined as the essential driving force that help in achieving the vision and mission of any organization. It is a process in which individuals in the business influence other individual to reach common business goals. Further, Liphadzi et al., (2017) defined leadership as an interactive, interdependent and focused performance system wherein various activities take place in the organization such as procedures, input processes, outputs and others. Leader are known to set direction in the organization for future development. Leaders help in visualizing the future aim and area of success that business should move with respective strategies and knowledge. Further, leadership is defined as a person that set direction, build inspiring vision and lead a team of people towards the set common goal (Algahtani 2014). It is the capacity within a person to translate the vision into reality by empowering others in the team and influence them to work together to achieve the set goal.
Liphadzi et al. (2017) stated that leadership is related to management because both are important for boosting the performance of the organization. However, there are various differences between the role of leadership and management in an organization. Management deals with activities such as planning, controlling, structuring and budgeting, whereas, leadership is related to the processes such as directing, visioning and motivating the team members along with coordinating them to move towards a common goal. This means that leadership is related influencing others to engage them in long term goals of the organization. Algahtani (2014) pointed out that the role of management and leadership also differs based on internal and external role. The goal of the managers aims at necessities of the organization such as to make sure that day to day business gets done at time and efficiently, whereas, the goal of the leadership is to inspire people to indulge in workplace activities and be creative in problem solving. For example, a manager forms team, interact with customers on personal note, talk to employees about their needs and greeting dignitaries. For example, manager in a company is responsible to engage in price negotiations with suppliers of raw materials.
According to LUNENBURG (2013), managers avoid taking risks, while leaders are risk takers and actively engage in taking new innovation and risky decisions. This is because a leader is always determined by traits like courageous, flexible, innovative and inspiring and a manager is analytical, deliberate, stabilizing and authoritative. This shows that the leader and manager vary in their core skills they implement in the organization. According to John Kotter, a management always tries to establish the security and order in the business for smooth functioning of the system, while leadership focuses at promoting change within the organization. This means that managers ensure consistency in organizational process, while leaders seek to adapt to continuous change that can bring improvement and help meet long term goal of the business. For example, a leader takes a risky decision to bring changes in the manufacturing process to increase production, while a manager in the same organization focuses on ensures that the new production system is managed efficiently on a day-to-day basis (Hechanova et al. 2018). This showed that the leader took risk of choosing a new process to improve performance of the firm in long term, while the manager ensured effective implementation.
I have come across a leadership role where I led a team of members and it taught me the way a successful leader should work in a team for effective accomplishment of the goal. I was a part of a field project team in my internship where I was made the project leader to lead the team. As a part of the project, we were supposed to visit manufacturing site of the company to collect data and suggest changes to be implemented in the present manufacturing processes. Being a leader of the team, my approach was much participative where I believed in group decision making rather than individual decision making. I used democratic leadership style to lead my lead where I took more participative role in decision making. Group members were encouraged to share ideas and opinions on the ways a business can manufacture in a better way. According to Liggett (2020) democratic leaders believe in involving the team to contribute in the decision-making process and make the final decision themselves using the best ideas and opinions. The use of participative leader behavior used by me was right in this particular project because deciding on the most suitable manufacturing process for the company was not an individual decision and taking decision in a group gave me a chance to make use of multiple ideas and knowledge and choose the most appropriate option. Bhatti et al. (2012) has stated that the democratic approach to leadership increase the decision-making time, however, it often leads to better end results. In the given team work, for me quality was more important than speed of taking decision because it was my first internship and leadership role where I wanted to lead my responsibilities efficiently. From this perspective making use of democratic leadership was right because it enabled me to take best decision to change the present manufacturing process in the most efficient way.
Use of participative leadership approach had positive impact on the employees and the working environment. With the use of participative approach, I was able to motivate the employees to perform better and increased their job satisfaction rate. This is because they felt that their views and opinions are valued in the organization and in important decisions. Liggett (2020) pointed out that democratic leadership is known for motivating the employees by allowing them to assume that everyone is involved and has equal stake in the decision of the business. Moreover, this approach had positive impact on the organization because with multiple suggestions and knowledge I was able to suggest the best change in the manufacturing unit. Similarly, Bhatti et al. (2012) stated that democratic leaders have positive impact on the performance of the firm by developing a sense of responsibility among the employees to give their best and express their creative ideas for the best decisions in the organization.
From the personal experience I learnt using an appropriate leadership style is important for the success of the organization as well as for motivating the staffs and keeping them satisfied. Bhatti et al. (2012) has also stated that there is considerable impact of leadership style on the organizational performance because the style used by leaders influence the culture of the organization and in turn has an impact on organization performance by increasing efforts of the employees to give their best. Moreover, I realized that with a participative leadership behavior I was able to make better decision than I would have made individually. Even though participative leadership also has negative impact such as increased chances of conflict among the team members when taking decisions, yet the positive impact is more than negative impact. Further, I learnt that leadership is one of the most important ways for the business to achieve success or failure. This is because leadership is the manner people in the organization are directed and motivated to work for the growth of the business.
From the module I learnt that leadership should always be kept as priority in the organization and implementing a leadership approach that can help form positive impact on the employees. Moreover, the course has changed my opinion on the role of a manager and a leader by knowing that both the roles differ from each other. I was of the opinion that leaders and managers are same, however, now I learnt the ways both roles differ from each other and leaders are known to take more risk than the managers.
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