May 15, 2012

Organization and Management: Leadership

Diploma Courses under The Institute of Bankers, Bangladesh (IBB) 
Organization and Management-JAIBB
Q.1 What do you understand by Leadership? Discuss the functions of Leadership.

Ans.: Keith Davis - “Leadership is the ability to persuade others to seek defined objectives enthusiastically. It is the human factor which binds the group together and motivates it towards goal.”
Keys and Case – “Leadership is the process of influencing and supporting others to work enthusiastically towards achieving objectives.”

Weihrich and Koontz – “Leadership is the art or process of influencing people so
that they will strive willingly and enthusiastically towards the achievement of group goals.”

Thus leadership is the process and the art influencing the behaviour, attitudes, activities of people to work willingly and enthusiastically towards the accomplishment of group goals.

Functions of Leadership:
•Guides or Inspires or Motivates
•Boosts Morals
•Creates Confidence and Enthusiasm
•Develops Team Spirit
•Creates Vision and Initiative
•Transforms Potential into Reality
•Sincerity and Honesty
•Courage and Will Power
•Flexible and Dynamic
•Emotional Stability i.e. Maturity
•Sound Judgment
•Tact and Humour
•Education and Knowledge
•Conceptual Skills
•Administrative Skills
•Analytical Skills
•Human Relations Skills
•Technical Skills

Q.2 Explain the various styles of Leadership.

Ans.: Leadership style is the general way or pattern of behaviour of a leader towards his followers in order to influence their behaviour to attain a goal.

The main styles of leadership are as follows:-

(1) Autocratic and Authoritarian Leadership: An autocratic leader is one who centralizes power and make all the decisions himself. He tells his followers what to do and expects to be obeyed without questions. Thus, such a leader imposes his will on his followers.

Autocratic leaders may be of two types :-

(i) Pure Autocratic or Negative Leader : He is a director and makes all decisions himself. He superimposes his decisions on his subordinates. He uses fear of punishment or penalty to carry out his decisions. Thus, it is a negative leadership.

(ii) Benevolent Autocrat or Positive Leader : When an autocrat leader avoids negative coercive power and uses reward power to influence his subordinates, he is called a benevolent autocrat leader. Such a leader shows active concern for the feelings and welfare of his subordinates.

(2) Participative/Democrative Leadership: Participative leaders decentralize authority. Such leaders involve subordinates in decision making process. The leaders and their group members work as a social unit. They freely exchange their views and express opinions and suggestions.

(3) Free Rein or Laissez Faire Leadership Style : Such a leader completely delegates his authority to his subordinates and allow them to make their own plans, procedures and decisions. He simply aids his subordinates in performing their job. He exist as a contact person with the subordinates external environment. Free rein leadership style is permissive and leader least intervenes his subordinates. The leader remains passive observer but intervenes only during the crisis. Free rein leadership is suitable where subordinates are highly competent and duty conscious.

(4) Paternalistic Leadership: A paternalistic leadership is authoritarian by nature. It is heavily work centered but has consideration after his subordinates the way father looks after his children. Such a leader helps, guide and encourages his subordinates to work together as member of a family. The subordinate in turn tend to remain submissive and faithful.


Q.3 Discuss the different theories of Leadership.

Ans.: Several theories of leadership have been developed by management theoreticians. These theories may be classified into three categories.

(1) Personality Theories
(2) Behavioral Theories
(3) Situational or Contingency Theories

(1) Personality Theories: Personality theories are theories that focus on the personal qualities or traits of leader. Such theories include the following:-
(i) Great Man Theory (ii) Trait Theory

(i) Great Man theory of Leadership: Great man theory of leadership claims that “Leaders are born, not made”. Leadership qualities are inherited or carried in genes. Leadership qualities cannot be acquired or developed through education or training.

(ii) Trait Theory of Leadership: This theory states that there are certain unique traits or qualities essential for successful leader. Any person who wants to be a successful leader must posses those traits. This theory emphasizes that those traits need not necessarily be inborn but may be acquired through education, training and practice.

(2) Behavioural Theory of Leadership: Behavioural theory focuses on what the leaders do i.e. on the actual behaviour of the leader. Behavioural theory is based on the premise that effective leadership is the result of effective behaviour of the leader. Success of leadership depends on the behaviour of the leader and not on his traits.

A particular behaviour pattern of a leader (functional behaviour) makes him a successful leader and its opposite (dysfunctional) would reject him as a leader. The functional dimensions include setting goals, motivating employees towards achievement of goals, making effective communication and interaction, building team spirit etc. The dysfunctional dimensions of leaders behaviour include in ability to accept subordinates ideas, poor communication and ineffective interaction, poor, human relations etc.

(3) Situational / Contingency Approach : The situational approach of a leadership emphasis that emergence and success of a leader is largely determined by supranational factors This theory stresses that a leadership behaviour which is effective under the particular situation may be ineffective under the other. These are several different situational models of leadership have been developed. Fiedler’s contingency model, path goal model, Blanchard’s model etc.


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