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Human Resource Management

Leaders and Strong Organizational Culture

The importance of effective leadership leading to a strong and positive organizational culture has been recognized by most of the modern day organizations. Though this has been an old concept but the level of importance it has achieved in recent times is surprising and is quite justifiable. The organization needs to determine organizational leaders that set standards and benchmarks for the followers. They need to lead the pack and give directions. Apart from the leading role they also play the role of a friend and a guide. For leaders it is important first to create a good relationship with the subjects, the leader needs to understand the people around him in a depth that he knows how they will react to certain situations. If the leader has worked on his or her strategy positively and comprehensively there is no doubt that he or she can help build a strong organizational culture (Driskill and Brenton, 2005). In fact many scholars agree that strong and effective leaders are the sole source of a successful organization, the meaning here is that effective and strong leadership tends to give the organization a sense of direction and protection.

This results in the

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development of a strong organizational culture, which determines how the company will perform or initiate its long term strategy and how the external environment will affect it. Basically a leader tends to maintain a sense of direction in the employees he or she teaches the employees how to manage their time schedule their tasks and work in teams. It’s the leader’s job to motivate the employees in any form that he or she thinks is most appropriate. As this process is continuously repeated for all the new employees, these practices become habits and are passed on to new employees from the older ones. Once these practices embed themselves in the organization’s roots they are known as a term Organizational Culture. An important way to maintain a good strong organizational culture is to make sure the rules and policies of the organizational are followed properly. Once these are performed regularly people tend to forget that these are the company policies rather they become the daily practices. Another factor that affects the organizational culture and is an important aspect of building up a strong culture is the motivation level of the employees (Sergiovanni and Corbally, 1986). There are several ways to maintain a high level of motivation among your employees, it’s now your task to identify which one is the best and implement it effectively. This system should be embedded in your organizational culture but it is necessary that it should be checked and controlled for innovation and changes as time moves on.

Trait Theory in Leadership

The basic idea behind discussing the Trait Theory is to understand the basic characteristics and attributes of a leader. Trait theory emphasizes on the concept that leaders are not born but eventually normal humans are converted in to leaders. The basic theory relates or points to the natural fact that humans can be judged by their traits and characteristics, it is basically a way to study human nature and behavior. The trait theory related to leadership is also a very important aspect when studying leaders. The basic characteristics of a leader are clearly defined in the table below. The table highlights the traits of a leader and the skills that are required to make him a successful leader.

Traits
Skills
Adaptable to situations
Alert to social environment
Ambitious and achievement-orientated
Assertive
Cooperative
Decisive
Dependable
Dominant (desire to influence others)
Energetic (high activity level)
Persistent
Self-confident
Tolerant of stress
Willing to assume responsibility
Clever (intelligent)
Conceptually skilled
Creative
Diplomatic and tactful
Fluent in speaking
Knowledgeable about group task
Organised (administrative ability)
Persuasive
Socially skilled

(Csikszentmihalyi, 2004)

The basic traits discussed here are important to be present in a person who tends to be a good leader. A good leader should be adaptable to different situations and alert to social environment. A good leader needs to motivated all the time and looking for opportunities and should be ambitious towards achieving goals and objectives. The leader should be cooperative, energetic for motivating people around him and willing to take responsibility. Leader should also be dependable, persistent, dominant in the sense of influencing others and tolerant of stress. These were some of the traits that a leader should have now coming to the skills that a leader needs to posses in order to be successful. A leader should be clever as in he or she should quickly understand the situation, conceptually skilled, creative and etc. There is a further division of the type of leadership that might be required by the any organization. This is explained in the next topic.

Situational and Contingency Leadership

Situational Leadership theory basically suggests that a leader should observe the situation first and then study each and every factor that is involved and may affect the situation. The leader should then take a decision in light of all the factors and his own understanding. On the other hand Contingency leadership is of a different type. Contingency leadership focuses the leadership style and also the situation; it divides the leadership success in to factors. Firstly the leadership style that has been adopted and secondly the situational favorableness as assumed by the person. A leadership brand is also a type of leadership that is new but very attractive, it is related to a set of principles and theory that are general and can be applied to any situation or problem.

Situational Leadership

It is a type of leadership theory while studying organizational leadership and leadership style. It is a leadership model that suggests the use of different leadership styles in different occasions, it also highlights that flexibility is the key to success, leaders should adapt to different situations and then take decisions. A person quickly changing leadership styles according to the situation is a good leader. Many people try this in their daily schedules, for example they try to avoid mistakes of new employees and treat them nicely. This model is not only for people in leadership positions or decision making position but for each and everyone (Maxwell, 2007).

Contingency Leadership

This theory suggests that leadership style is not determined by a single factor but two. This theory basically led to the study of the roles of attitudes and behaviors in leadership. Many scholars assumed on the basis of their studies that there was only a single style of leadership appropriate at a single occasion, in contrast to that the contingency model highlights that the leader’s effectiveness and efficiency relies on situational contingency, which is actually the result of the mixture of two factors known as leadership style and situational favorableness which was later also called situational control (Kouzes and Posner, 2008).

Conclusion

As discussed above there are different ways of leadership practiced in different organizations. Every organization has their own success formula and has different leadership style that suits them. According to many organizations they are very satisfied by the leadership style that is being followed in their management. Leaders influence the way organizations make their decisions in many ways. The different behaviors and attitudes that leader possess are the best resource that any organization has. This helps them bring diversity and innovation in the business processes of the organization. Some scholars have outlined the different traits and qualities that leaders possess, and most successful leaders possess these qualities and traits but the idea generation process of every leader is very different. The most important aspect regarding leadership is to do the correct thing correctly at the correct time.

Bibliography

Csikszentmihalyi M. (2004). Good Business: Leadership, Flow, and the Making of Meaning. Penguin.

Gerald W. Driskill, Angela Laird Brenton. (January 12, 2005). Organizational Culture in Action: A Cultural Analysis Workbook. Sage Publications, Inc;

Kouzes J.M., Posner B.Z. (2008). The Leadership Challenge, 4th Edn. Jossey-Bass.

Maxwell J.C. (2007). The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader: Becoming the Person Others Will Want to Follo. 2nd edn. Thomas Nelson.

Thomas Sergiovanni, John E Corbally. (August 1, 1986). Leadership and Organizational Culture: New Perspectives on Administrative Theory and Practice. University of Illinois Press

 

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