Effective Leadership Style
Effective Leadership Style
Leadership is the ability to provide guidance or directions to followers. According to Stanfield (2009), one does not need a special title in a job to be a leader (p. 10). A person can provide leadership in any situation that requires someone to take charge and show others the way. For those with families, for example, leadership begins at home and a man should be able to lead his wife and children.
Considering that there are many styles of leadership, realizing a concise definition of leadership may be a challenge (Stanfield 2009, p. 10). Usually, how leaders deal with issues tends to vary greatly and mostly depends on the environment a leader is presented with. Ogden and Meyer (2009), argued that leadership is the ability to influence others toward a desired direction (p. 22). Effective leadership, on the other hand, may be defined as the ability of a leader to function at a level that allows an organization to mane maximum benefits (Jenney 2009, p. 9).
Similarities and Differences between Management and Leadership
Over the years, the terms leadership and management have been used interchangeably in the business world though with clear distinctions in meaning. While leadership is about doing the right thing, management has to do with doing things the right way (Collins, Emsell & Haydon 2011). Apparently, both management and leadership are essential for success to be realized. While leadership provides the vision, management is important for the realization of the vision.
The difference between management and leadership is, however, quite clear. To a great extent, a manager holds a directive position in an organization and performs the functions of planning, organizing, directing, and controlling (Roussel 2011, p. 740). Leaders, on the other hand, are mostly responsible for the future of the organization. While a manager thinks about short terms and is concerned about achieving short term goals, a leader focuses on the long term survival of the organization. A manager is also regarded as a problem solver who succeeds because of intelligence, analytical ability and hard work (Adeniyi & Adeniyi 2010). While managers focus on the achievement of results and investigating the reasons for failure, leaders empower their subordinates and encourage the spirit of team work among them. Managers also tend to be inward focused while leaders are concerned with both the internal and external affairs of an organization. However, while mastering the art of management is good, it is leadership that essentially makes things to move in any organization.
As far as similarities are concerned, scholars are in agreement that an overlap between management and leadership roles within an organization exists (Collins, Emsell & Haydon 2011). To ensure that success is realized, for example, both leaders and managers have to provide inspiration, motivation and direction to their subordinates (Roussel 2011, p. 741). Apparently, these are very critical ingredients for success at every level within an organization.
Variation on the Best Leadership Approach
Uzonwanne (2007, p. 44) identified four different styles of leadership. Directive style of leadership is one where the leader endeavors to guide followers in order to help them achieve their goals. The other style of leadership is supportive and requires leaders to have productive relationships with their followers. Generally, a supportive leader is quite friendly and cares about his or her subordinates. This style of leadership may also be referred to as facilitative one (Olmstead 2010, p. 186). Participative leadership is where a leader involves all subordinates in the decision making process. According to Rainey (2009, p. 320), participative leadership is only suitable where subordinates perceive that their self-esteem is at stake. Most of the time, the leader encourages his or her subordinates to give suggestions regarding decisions that affect the operations of an organization (Griffin 2011, p.42). The fourth style of leadership is achievement oriented. Under this leadership style, the leader defines tasks and subordinates are expected to deliver to a very high standard. According to Cullen and Parboteeah (2013, p. 665), followers are required to obey orders by their leaders and deliver to the expected standards.
How I would like to be led
As a team member, I would like to be led by a supportive leader. In my opinion, supportive leadership creates a reciprocal relationship between the leader and his or her subordinates and encourages personal development. I believe that supportive leadership will facilitate a smooth interaction between my leader and me. I will be in a better position to understand the requirements of my leader and to give my best in offering my services.
In conclusion, it is imperative for a leader to select the most appropriate style in any given situation. Often, differences in operational environments may emerge because of structures or the caliber of people to be led.
Adeniyi, MA & Adeniyi, MA 2010, Effective Leadership Management: An Integration of Styles, Skills and Character for Today’s CEOs, AuthorHouse, Bloomington, IN.
Collins, C, Emsell, P & Haydon, J 2011, Leadership and Management Development, Oxford University Press, New York.
Cullen, JK & Parboteeah, P 2013, Multinational Management, Cengage Learning, Stamford, CT.
Griffin, R 2011, Fundamentals of Management, Cengage Learning, Stamford, CT.
Jenney, J 2009, The Manager’s Guide for Effective Leadership: A Self Training Guide for Building Superior Organizations, AuthorHouse, Bloomington, IN.
Ogden, G & Meyer, D 2009, Leadership Essentials: Shaping Vision, Multiplying Influence, Defining Character, Inter Varsity Press, Westmont, IL.
Olmstead, J 2010, Executive Leadership, Gulf Publishing Company, Houston, Texas
Rainey, HG 2009, Understanding and Managing Public Organizations, John Wiley & Sons, Hoboken, NJ.
Roussel, L 2011, Management and Leadership for Nurse Administrators, Jones & Bartlett Publishers, Sudbury, MA.
Stanfield, AW 2009, Defining Effective Leadership: Lead in Whatever You Do, Tate Publishing, Mustang, Oklahoma.
Uzonwanne, FC 2007, Leadership Style and Decision-making Models Among Corporate Leaders in Non-profit Organizations, ProQuest, Ann Arbor, MI.