Contemporary approaches to leadership theory - Sample Essay

Trait theory based on the qualities of the leaders where it means that ‘leaders are born, not made. ’ Leaders consist of different qualities where for an effective leader some qualities like judgment, drive, fairness, energy, initiative, human relation skill and foresight. This theory is discredited more or less. Behavioral theories The styles of leadership are the collections of leadership behavior that are used in different conditions in different ways. Among many classifications of styles, leadership styles are extent to the focus to the leaders whether this is task/performance based or relationship/people based.

Two models describes the key terms: Asridge model: Tells: Here all the decisions are made and issues are instructed by the leader that must be followed. Sells: though still all the decisions are made by the leader but subordinates are motivated here to accept those rather than being emphasized. Consults: here ideas are conferred by the leaders with subordinates by taking their view though the final saying is retained by the leaders. Joins: leaders and subordinates both take part in decision making based on the consensus. Blake and Mounton’s managerial grid:

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Two basic dimensions of leadership have been observed by Robert Blake and Jane Mouton through their research one of which is concern for production and the other is concern for people. Mangers could be located from very low to very high concern at any point on a continuum along any of these two dimensions. Various permutations are observed in these two concerns that are not correlated. These permutations are modeled as a grid by Blake and Mouton. Concerns for people are represented by one axis and concern for production is represented by another.

Nine points from 1(low) to 9 (high) are allotted to each axis. 1. Transformational theories are based on the reaction of a leader in any transactional situation in contrast with the transformational situation. Where transactional theory is based on the rewards and punishment system, transformational leadership focuses on the other hand to a bigger picture heading to the achievement of a common goal. Again the types of leadership style are also focused by the transformational theory. M&S Leadership case: M&S is the leading UK retail giant especially in the clothing sector.

The company was founded in 1884 in Leeds by Michael Marks and Thomas Spenser in Leeds. Now the company has 700 outlets United Kingdom and another 300 stores are flagged in 40 countries throughout the world. Company’s headquarter is based in London. Different attributes of M&S leaders are as follows: Greenbury acted like a task manager (9,1) in respect to some aspects like unilateral, push people for only profit, eavesdropping and good reward in finance based on the team morale. The action of Bostock and Rose were like a team manager (9,9).

They insisted on the unity of the team, motivation and confidence of people for the effective results. They used both directive/task focused and supportive/ people-focused attitude. Again, Greenbury and Salesbury are considered as autocratic where Rose played a role of a consultive leader. Bostock was democratic in his leadership approach. The history of M&S is based on the autocracy culture. Though Greenbury tried to alter it to the consults/join approach by encouraging of board meeting and involving people but due to the strong base of autocratic style, he stepped behind.

Rose followed tells style especially during solving problems. Both of them used sells and consult approach in some contexts. Determine leadership approaches relevant for the 21st century, drawing on theories and tools as practiced by leading international organizations. In the 21st century, a new leadership approach has emerged based on the bottom-up transformation that is inspired by building community and also by shared power. Three themes are implicated in this framework: Shared leadership:

According to this leadership, everybody has the qualities of leadership inside and can pool and drawn upon this during necessity specially while working in a group on any vital common issue. Leadership as relationship This theme is based on the idea of relationship network and on the concepts of partnership, empowerment and service. Leadership in community This leadership assumes the community as the conceptual setting where the relationship of leadership occurs. According to Farkas and De Becker, leaders can lead in five ways: Strategic Approach

The top strategist is the Chief Executive of any company who envisions the future systematically and map out specifically the way to get there. Human Asset Approach Success is managed by the Chief Executive with the help of policies of people, principles and programs. Expertise Approach A particular propriety expertise is championed by the Chief Executive what is then utilized for focusing the organization. Box Approach A set of rules, procedures, systems and values are developed by the Chief Executive in order to control behavior and results within the well defined constrains. Change Approach

The Chief Executive behaves as a radical change agent with the transformation of bureaucracies within the organization embracing the new and different approach. With the entrance of 21st century, the predictions of the concept of leadership development are seemed as follows: 1. Leadership is for all – every individual in the present organization is a team member and a manager as well. For this reason, leadership is needed to be learnt and exhibited by everyone. 2. Learning is involved in leadership – leaders always discover new knowledge and know the way of sharing it with others.

With the spread of learning culture, leadership can be shown more than ever before. 3. Leadership is based on team – Though every organization maintains the hierarchy and it will be exist, but the best organizations always empower their members to become a leader. 4. Leadership is not authoritarian – in this 21st century, the authority of an individual is counted by his/her saying but not with his/her status. Here, leaders communicate with people but to people. New way of leadership is the outcome of new way of communication. 5.

Followership is included in Leadership– leadership responsibility may be more or less person to person but every individual will learn from others. The experience of becoming a contributor will be possessed by everybody. Explore and examine your own personal and managerial effectiveness within an organisation through a process of personal reflection. Leadership Development Through Experience 1. The people I personally work with I am stimulated to the development by the people I always work with. They play a vital role both in my personal and professional life.

According to Kouzes and Posner, ‘‘other people have always been important guidance sources. Our parents always provide us with advice and supports, our curiosity for any favourite subject was developed by any particular teacher, we tinkered in the garage with the help of our neighbour, we were motivated and promised to give our best to our coaches, we were given important feedback by our counsellor on our attribute and its affect, the master of art instructs us in the basic of craft, our first boss taught us to skip the ropes and hoops to jump. ’

I am learning about the leadership whether it is effective or not by being attentive to my surrounding models who may be my immediate boss. I am taught what to do or not to do with help of watching the leadership roles of others. Again, through the close alliance with any experienced individual who is referred as mentor and by taking me under his/her wing, valuable perspectives and insights can be achieved by me. Executive coaching is extensively becoming a common responsibility of all the executives to the managers who report them and it is also relevant to monitoring.

Again it is regarded as an investment to change counterproductive attribute, always interpersonal which is the threat of derailing a valued manger. Development of Leadership Through Task 1. The task itself The task of development is always vague and more complex. The development of leadership can be increased with changing of work environment. New and creative solutions may be needed for the nature of task. The strategic planning project can be intellectually challenging and can contribute to the development of the leaders.

Those development opportunities are the best where individuals are stretched and allowed to test themselves against any new and hard task. Some factors impacts on any task whether it is developmentally challenging or not or high level of pressure is generated. These factors include deadlines, requirements of travel, more hours and an unpredictable task where both there is a possibility of both success and failure. All the employees may not be provided with the same development opportunities by the organization what is the aspect of the task of leadership development.

There is an outstanding difference between large and small organizations in particular in what opportunities they offer. Leadership Development Through Education 1. Courses of University in leadership The training program of leadership is now a day included in many universities particularly in the extracurricular activities. Personality traits, behaviours of leadership, motivation, values and different leadership theories are included in those courses for describing the process of leadership. Method of standard lecture is used in several courses.

Again students are provided with individualised feedback in some courses in the form of intelligence, values, personality and ratings of leadership behaviour. Several situations of leadership are described in the case studies that are used as the conveyer of the leadership discussions. Another method is role playing where participants are assigned to play a role in a job related scenario. Trainees are thus helped to practice relevant skills. 1. Training programmes of leadership The contents of such programs are more focused and the programs are normally very short.

They include lectures, case studies and role playing exercise for the improvement of leadership. Four different teaching methods provide effective training. These include personal growth, building of skill, feedback and conceptual awareness. Develop an in-depth understanding of the principles of change and the organisational change process. Change management is termed as a structured way for the transition of individuals, teams and organizations from the present to expected desired future state. There are 10 principles of change management according to John Jones, DeAnne Aguirre and Mathew Calderone : Systematically addressing the human side:

1. The approach of change management should be fully integrated into the design of program and making decision that leads to make strategic decision. Any people issues should be dealt step by step for putting speed, morale and outcome at any risk. Start at the top 1. Change should be embraced first by the top leader of any organization like CEO for taking challenge and for motivating others. They should be model to the expected behaviors and should speak in one voice. Involving each layer 1. Leaders should be identified and trained in each layer of change efforts and they must be aligned to the vision of the company.

they also should be equipped for executing particular mission and should be motivated for making change happened. Making the formal case 1. As the individuals are rational inherently, formal case can be articulated and written version statement can be created that will ensure the alignment between team and leadership. Creating ownership 1. Ownership can be best created with the involvement of people to identify problems and to craft solutions. It can be tangible or psychological and is is reinforced by incentives and rewards. Communicating the message 1.

Change programs can be best where core messages are reinforced through regular and timely advice which is both practical and inspirational. The flow of communication moves out from the top to bottom and employees are provided with the right information at the right time that helps soliciting their input and feedback. This communications require multiple and redundant channels. Evaluating the cultural landscape 1. Leaders are accounted for culture at each organizational level through the successful change program where speed and intensity are picked up when they flow down.

Cultural diagnostics helps to assess the readiness of organization to the change, bring key issues, identify conflicts and define factors of recognizing the leadership and resistance sources. Addressing culture clearly 1. The culture and underlying behaviors should be cleared by the leaders that support the new business method. Opportunities for rewarding those behaviors are also found by the leaders. A cultural change can be kicked start effectively with the understanding that all companies posses a cultural centre. Preparation for the unexpected

1. Effective change management continuously reassesses the impact of the unexpected reaction of people, willingness of organization and ability of adopting the next transformation. Momentum can be maintained with the real data from the field and solid decision making. Speaking to the people 1. People want to know about the change, the expectation towards them and their performance assessment process. Leaders need to be cleared and honest about this all. Rewards should be promoted as dramatic reinforcement to embrace change.

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