It is a well-known fact that leaders are not made, they are born. Instances from history and the present world abounds that exemplify the values and traits of a true leader. A leader could be from any field, be it politics, culture, society or organization. In the modern world, it is extremely important for a leader to have a sound knowledge of ethics, management and the values of teamwork. Previously, several theories and models of leadership have been developed that define the different leadership styles (Latham 2014). However, none of the theories had the perfect definition of a true leader.
In this essay, I try to provide a novel theory or model of leadership that encompasses most of the traits of previous models and includes other unique traits as well. The new leadership model is applied in organizational contexts as well. I would also elaborate on the skills of the new leader and compare other models as well.
Main organizing idea of the new leadership style
A leader possesses innumerable skills that differentiate him or her from the crowd. Several ideas define leadership styles that include credibility, vision, honesty, relationships and so on. Among the many theories and models of leadership, the Contingency Theory, Behavioral Theory and Transactional and Transformational leadership theory are the ones that are being followed the most. accounting to Anderson et al. (2017), these theories have not been scientifically proven to exert any influence on individual traits. Apart from that, the theories present ambiguous situations where it becomes unclear what the theory is trying to pose. McCleskey (2014), however argues that the development of these theories have provided a base for the upcoming scholars and intellects to define leadership they observe in different strata of life.
The new leadership model however would be based on the idea of compassion and discipline. I believe that compassion is what a human being must have to lead as an example. In my model, thus, the leader would possess high level of compassion that is love and care for others. In addition, the leader would exhibit extreme discipline that would go simultaneously with compassion. It is important for a leader to feel for others because basic human values strike a chord with people above everything (Joseph et al. 2015). With the combination of compassion and discipline, the leader would be able to acquire other skills as well. This would be accomplished through deep observation of others and being genuine to self. Compassion makes a person better human and discipline makes him sustain every difficulty because being compassionate in a competitive world is tough.
Traits of the new leader
According to many scholars, leadership traits are such that distinguishes an individual from others. In the Contingency model, a leader has been said to possess the quality to make decisions instantly depending on the situation. The Behavioral Theory on the contrary states that there is one single way to lead and the leader displays skills of having concern for multiple elements of an organization. Day et al. (2014) mention five major skills that a leader possesses that include communication, passion, commitment, team building and determination. I agree with these qualities because not only leaders but also every human being must possess these skills. A leader stands out because he applies these skills differently and evolves better with these skills.
The new leader as per my new model would have these above-mentioned skills along with the skill of managing time and having the power to motivate. Bhuvanaiah and Raya (2014) view motivation as the fuel of success. The authors have further stated that the combination of motivation power and determination skills can create a leader that has no match.
To be an effective leader, we have to set examples of what he or she preaches. Giving motivational speeches is very different from performing actions that motivate. Here, the famous phrase, “practice what you preach” must be remembered. Leaders exert influence when they compel others to follow them, not the other way round. An effective leader must not compete or make rivals, he or she must make others follow and admire them.
Core values of the new leadership model
Anderson and Sun (2017) have put forth the view that all leadership models have the same core values because it is obvious that a leader will have these values. We as human beings adhere to certain values and those values are attained from different societal institutions like our family, friends, colleagues, schools and so on. It is but also true that no human being follows each value in life. In simple words, no human being is perfect; everyone has flaws. However, to be a leader it is crucial to maintain and respect most values in life. Apart from the already mentioned - compassion and discipline – my leadership model will have values such as integrity, courage, intellectualism, genuinity and revolutionary.
These values combined with the skills and ideas, would allow the new leader to exercise an influence that would bring revolutionary changes in any team that he or she leads. In addition, these values would empower the leader to comprehend various cultural dimensions while leading a team.
Applying the new leadership model in organizational context
I must also mention that the new compassionate model of leadership cannot be easily applied in the present organizational structure. It is going to be a slow but successful process before the model is finally accepted. However, my leadership model is most likely to benefit the ongoing relationships that are visible in the modern organizations. The quality of compassion has the power to produce exemplary teamwork in an organization by creating and maintaining a strong bond (George 2014). Along with compassion, the values of humility and motivational skills, organizational relationships that involve the customer-client, leader-employee and company-client would see a transformational change. Google is a great example of an existing organization that demonstrates traits of the new leadership model. The statement can be validated from the organizational culture that Google has (Fortune.com 2018). It treats its employees like members of own family, showing great compassion.
I must also point out that leadership models and theories were developed after observing people and their styles of leadership. Gradually, organizations formed and were lead by people who possessed certain qualities. Hence, leaders who led organizations gave rise to the development of these theories and not vice versa. Porath, Gerbasi and Schorch (2015) have rightly pointed out that people give rise to theories and not the theories that shape people.
However, if my model of leadership were being used in any organization, it would have a culture where there was no place for unethical conduct. We can observe in almost every existing organization that someone or the other has compromised ethical values either under political or economic pressure or under too much greed for success.
The new leadership model of compassion seeks to achieve an organizational structure that lays much stress on humans as the most valuable resources. This involves putting multiculturalism at the peak of organizational missions and visions. My leadership model further seeks to form an organizational culture where ethics and rules are followed and that it is exemplified by the leader. Compassion along with discipline ensures that the leader would not be carried away with compassion but maintain discipline in the organization (Simpson 2015).
Similarities and Unique features of the new leadership model from other models
Although my leadership model has many similarities with the older models and theories, it has included compassion as the most important element. On the one hand, it displays elements of the Major theory while on the other it shows traits of the Behavioral theory (Montano and Kasprzyk 2015). In the end, however, the compassionate model of leadership conveys distinctiveness and effectiveness from other theories.
In my personal life, I have always been compassionate and valued discipline. I would allow my employees to express their opinions and make sure that those opinions given importance. Further, I would create an environment where my employees do not have to be forced or threatened to follow rules, as they would do it willingly. With compassion as the main idea of my leadership style, my organization would enjoy the moral duty to respect and care for every individual irrespective of the culture he or she hails from.
The new leadership model as proposed by me would thus be effective in raising the status of an organization and produce an exemplary leader. We know the importance of a good leadership for the success of an organization and its smooth functioning. Developing leadership styles that address the changing needs of the modern competitive world is very crucial. However, it is also important to realize the value of humans as resources and treat them not like machines but humans. In the essay, I have proposed a leadership model, which I have named the Compassionate Model of Leadership that upholds values such as integrity, courage, determination and authenticity and so on. In addition, I have also presented the model’s relevance in the organizational context. In the end, I have demonstrated the way I would personally apply the new leadership model in my organization.
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