Leadership Paper: Styles, Organizational Culture, And Theories.

1919 words - 8 pages

IntroductionLeading is establishing direction and influencing others to follow that direction. However, there are many variations and different areas of emphasis to this very simple definition. Experts assert that, whether you're an executive or an entry-level worker in your organization, it's critical for you to have strong skills in leadership.Many people believe that leadership is simply being thefirst, biggest or most powerful. Leadership in organizations has a different and more meaningful definition. A leader is interpreted as someone who sets direction in an effort and influences people to follow that direction. How they set that direction and influence people depends on a variety of factors. To really comprehend the "territory" of leadership, we will discuss various styles of leadership, provide some of the major theories and review some of the suggested traits and characteristics that leaders should have.Leadership StylesLeaders carry out their roles in a wide variety of styles, e.g., autocratic, democratic, participatory, laissez-faire (hands off), etc. Often, the leadership style depends on the situation, including the life cycle of the organization (Goodworth, p. 10). At Phoenix Logistics, our laissez-faire leadership style has been effective, in which, management exercises little control over his group, leaving them to sort out their roles and tackle their work, without participating in this process. In general, this approach leaves the team floundering with little direction or motivation.Again, there are situations where the Laissez-Faire approach can be effective. The Laissez-Faire technique is usually only appropriate when leading a team of highly motivated and skilled people, who have produced excellent work in the past. Once a leader has established that his team is confident, capable and motivated, it is often best to step back and let them get on with the task, since interfering can generate resentment and detract from their effectiveness. By handing over ownership, a leader can empower his group to achieve their goals.The autocratic leader dominates team-members, using unilateralism to achieve a singular objective. This approach to leadership generally results in passive resistance from team members and requires continual pressure and direction from the leader in order to get things done. Generally, an authoritarian approach is not a good way to get the best performance from a team.There are, however, some instances where an autocratic style of leadership may not be inappropriate. Some situations may call for urgent action, and in these cases an autocratic style of leadership may be best. In addition, most people are familiar with autocratic leadership and therefore have less trouble adopting that style. Furthermore, in some situations, subordinates may actually prefer an autocratic style.The democratic leader makes decisions by consulting his team, while still maintaining control of the group. The democratic leader allows...

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