Chapter Eleven: Leadership II: Approaches and Issues

Blake and Mouton's managerial grid is a method that measures the degree that managers are task-orientated and people-orientated.

The Hersey Situational Leadership (R) model states that different types of appropriate leadership are contingent on some other situational variable. With dimensions for supporting behaviour/relationship behaviour and task behaviour/directive behaviour the leadership for low:low is delegating, high:low is participating, high:high is selling and low:high is telling. The four stages of follower readies is market from R1 "unable and unwilling" to R4 "willing and able and confident".

Fielder's least preferred co-worker (LPC) theory is a contingency theory of leadership which identifies types of situations in which task-orientated or person-orientated leaders would be most affective. A favourable situation for a leader exists when relations with subordinates are good, when the task is highly structured and when a leader has considerable position power.

House's path-goal is a contingency model that focuses on the leader's role in increasing subordinate satisfaction and effort by increasing personal payoffs for goal attainment and making the path to these payoffs easier.

Vroom and Yetton's normative model is strictly not a leadership model. It is a contgency model that prescribes standards to determine the extent to which subordinates should be allowed to participate in decision making, defining decision styles as autocratic, consultative or group. A structured tree of yes/no situations starting from the importance of the decision, the degree of commitment, quantity of information, whether the problem is unstructured, the certainty of commitment by subordinates, the existence of shared goals all define the degree that the decision is made.

An alternative approach is that there can be at least some substitutes for leadership, including advisory or support staff, a cohesive work group, direct feedback form the task, professional orientation, ability, experience and training and intrinsically satisfying tasks. In addition there are also neutralisers of leadership which are aspects of an organisation which defeat the best efforts of leaders.

Contemporary leadership issues note the difference between leadership and management; not all managers are leaders and not all leaders are managers.

Charismatic leadership is based on individual inspired qualities rather than formal power. Charismatic leaders have a strong need for power, high levels of self-confidence, and a strong belief in their own ideals. They model desired behaviour, communicate high expectations to followers, are concerned with and try to influence the impressions of others and emphasise ideals, values and other lofty goals. They emphasis a vision that represents major, but achievable, change and take unorthodox or innovative steos to achieve them and demonstrate self-sacrifice to the organisation [or ideal].

Transformative leadership motivates followers to ignore slef-interest and work for the greater good of the organisation to achieve significant accomplishments. The emphasis is on articulating a vision that will convince subordinates to make major changes.

Transactional leadership focuses on motivating follower's self-interests by exchanging rewards for compliance. Emphasis on having subordinates implement procedures correctly and make needed, but routine, changes.

E-leadership is leadership that heavily relies on the use of information technology to supplement more traditional methods.

Leadership is a relatively new phenomenon [correlates with the introduction of universal suffrage]. Prior to that concerns were primarily with headship. In many countries paternalism, where leaders are a 'father figure', is still common. Whilst some leadership traits are universally thought of as positive (trustworthy, encouraging, honest, dependable) or negative (irritable, dictatorial, ruthless, egocentric), others are ambiguous and depend on the cultural context (ambitious, individualistic, cunning, cautious, class-conscious, evasive).

To improve one's leadership capabilities one must first assess their own leadership capabilities, the capabilities of others (followers) and situational constraints and opportunities. After that they should act by setting a direction, setting performance expectations, setting an example, clarify and build paths and appreciate the work of others. Finally they must reassess and change as needed.