Essay on Leadership: Leadership and Situational Leadership Theory

Submitted By chrishill55
Words: 943
Pages: 4

• Leadership Perspectives/Theories
• Trait theories
• Behavioral theories
• Contingency theories
• Leader-Member Exchange theory
• Charismatic Leadership
• Transformational Leadership
• Challenges to the Leadership Construct
• Attribution theory
• Substitutes and Neutralizers

What Is Leadership?
• Leadership
• The ability to influence a group toward the achievement of vision or goals
• Management
• Use of authority inherent in designated formal rank to obtain compliance from organizational members
• Both are necessary for organizational success
Important Issues
• Leadership at different organizational levels
• Applicability of theories to different levels
• Perceptions of leader effectiveness vs. actual effectiveness
• Measurement of leadership effectiveness
Trait Theories
Trait Theories
• Some traits do predict leadership in all situations
• Traits that do predict leadership do not explain substantial amounts of variance
• Better predictor of the appearance of leadership (leader emergence) than distinguishing b/t effective and ineffective leaders
Behavioral Theories of Leadership
• Theories proposing that specific behaviors differentiate leaders from non-leaders
• Differences between trait and behavioral theories of leadership:
• Trait theory: leadership is inherent
• Behavioral theory: leadership is a skill set and can be taught to anyone
Important Behavioral Studies

Contingency Theories
• While trait and behavior theories do help us understand leadership, an important component is missing: the leader’s environment or situation
• Contingency Theory adds this additional aspect to our understanding of leadership effectiveness
• Three key theories:
• Fiedler’s Model
• Hersey and Blanchard’s Situational Leadership Theory
• Path-Goal Theory
Fiedler Model
• Effective group performance depends on the proper match between leadership style and the degree to which the situation gives the leader control (situational control)
• Leadership style: assessed by LPC scale
• Assumes that leadership style (based on orientation revealed in LPC questionnaire) is fixed
• Considers Three Situational Factors that determine control:
• Leader-member relations: degree of confidence and trust in the leader
• Task structure: degree of structure in job assignments
• Position power: leader’s ability to hire, fire, and reward
• Effective leadership requires match between leadership style and situational control
• must have a leader who fits the situation or change the situation to fit the leader’s style
Fiedler’s Model: The Leader
Fiedler’s Model: Defining the Situation
Graphic Representation of Fiedler’s Model
Assessment of Fiedler’s Model
• Positives:
• Considerable evidence supports the model, especially if the original eight situations are grouped into three (high, moderate and low control)
• Problems:

Situational Leadership Theory
• A model that focuses on follower “readiness”
• “Readiness” is the extent to which people have the ability and willingness to accomplish a specific task
• Effective leaders choose one of four behavioral styles contingent on follower readiness

Situational Leadership Theory
House’s Path-Goal Theory
• Builds on the Ohio State studies and the expectancy theory of motivation
• The Theory:
• Leaders provide followers with information, support, and resources to help them achieve their goals
• Leaders help clarify the “path” to the worker’s goals
• Leaders can display multiple leadership types
• Leadership Styles:
• Directive: focuses on the work to be done
• Supportive: focuses on the well-being of the worker
• Participative: consults with employees in decision making
• Achievement-Oriented: sets challenging goals
Path-Goal Model

Leader-Member Exchange (LMX) Theory
In Group
• Members are similar to leader
• In the leader’s inner circle of communication
• Receive more time and attention from