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Importance of Leadership in Organizational Success

Question:

Dicuss about the Role of Leadership in Organizational Development.

Leadership refers to the quality to influence others to follow his footsteps. Every organization requires a leader to show them the right path of success (Van Wart, 2013). Leadership plays crucial role in organizational success.  Leadership is the combination of both research and practical skill that encourages the employees or other team members to work together to achieve the organizational goal. The idea of leadership has fuelled many debates. There is a conflict about the concept of leadership between United States and European countries (Moriano et al., 2014). US academic environments has analysed leadership as a procedure in which a person can provide efficient suggestion to a group of people and motivate them to work together to achieve a common target. According to some European report, leadership is a view of leaders that helps the team to not only achieve any common goal but also search for personal qualities. Leaders are responsible to monitor the performance graph of his team members. The performance level of all the employees is highly dependent on the quality of the leadership. According to some report, effective leaders must identify the goal of the organization and influence the employees to give their best performance to establish a better future for the organization (Moriano et al., 2014). One of the key qualities of leadership is to encourage the productivity of the organization. It is evident that a person who provides effective advice to his team during any crisis to overcome the turbulence later on recognized as the leader of the group. In this competitive era, organizations are setting new goals every now and then to beat their rivals. Thus, every organization requires an efficient leader to enhance the productivity of their organization.Leaders are expected to provide enthusiastic and friendly environment to his subordinates. It will motivate the team members to contribute in the success of the organization (Paustian-Underdahl,Walker &Woehr, 2014). The below mentioned article reviews the nature of leadership. It emphasises on the impact of leadership on the organizational culture and decision-making process. It has enlightened all the aspect of leadership that helps the organizations to meet their desired target.

The study of leadership has become crucial subject in last few decades. Recently some experts have claimed that leadership is a complete organization that research the goal of the organization, implement required strategies and tactics and influence other members to participate in the process of achieving the target. Leadership can be defined as the action to lead an organization or a group (Kollenscher et al., 2016). Some reports claim leadership is the social exchange between the leaders and followers. Merton has described leadership as the transaction between the leaders and his followers. As opined by some analysts, leaders are like other members of the group, but the quality of influencing team members distinguishes him from others. The two primary leadership approaches are traitist and situationist. There is conflict among the analysts about leadership. According to some analysts, leadership is based on some specific traits of the leader. On the contrary, Gibb (1988) has stated that leadership quality of the organization is dependent on the situation. There are many leadership theories that concentrated on fundamental nature of leadership. The four key leadership theories are- great man theory, trait theory, behavioural theory, contingency theory, transactional theory, transformational theory (Cheng et al., 2014). Leadership quality can be defined as a personal quality. This quality distinguishes leaders from other team members. Some famous qualities of effective leadership are:

Conflict in Concept of Leadership

Main objective of leadership is to identify the primary objective of the organization and adopt required strategies and techniques to the organization, influence others to participate in the the process (Lumby, 2013).

Leadership is the process in which a person influence other member of his group to work together to achieve the common goal. They provide a healthy atmosphere to their employees so they can work properly (Silzer et al., 2016). It will influence the employees to give their best performance to establish a better future for the organization.

The success of every organization is greatly dependent on the quality of leadership. An effective leader plays an important role in enhancing the growth of the organization. On the other hand, an active team can also fail to achieve the expected target due to the poor performance of the team leader.

The leadership styles are based on different situation (Silzer et al., 2016). Several leaders perform differently under various situations.

Leadership is not similar to bossism or management. Leaders are also a member of the group. They are not beyond the rules. However, their quality to influence and motivate others differentiates them from the rest of the group.

Leadership is a function to stimulate the followers to participate in the development of the organization (Mihalache et al., 2014). Effective leaders always motivate their employees to sharpen their skills to enhance the productivity level of the organization. It is considered as one of the key nature of leadership. Efficient leaders always actively participate in the production process of the organization.


Leaders must be able to accept all the responsibilities willingly in every situation. They must realize their responsibility towards the organization or the group. They must be loyal towards and dedicated towards the organization (Kollenscher et al., 2016). It will increase the effectiveness of their leadership and enhance the growth of the organization.

 Leadership is the quality of implementing vision in reality. An efficient leader must have the potential to turn their big ideas into reality (Kollenscher et al., 2016). It is not enough to make strategies; efficient leaders always look after the opportunities to implement their strategies into the practical world.

Leaders must play the role of friend, philosopher and guide (Prakash et al., 2015). Good leaders always encourage their subordinates to learn new technologies and new practices. They know the value of learning. They always discuss about their experience and achievements with their team member to motivate them and boost their moral values. Followers are often motivated by the personality and behaviour of their leaders.

Leaders play dual role. Effective leaders always stand by the side of their employees in all the circumstances and they support their organization as well. They influence their employees to provide their best performance for the betterment of the organization and the always look after the benefits of their subunits (Day et al., 2014).

Effective leaders always encourage their employees by appreciating them. Many organizations offer bonus, insurance to their staffs to boost their performance (Dinh et al., 2014). They know the value of appreciation. It is one of the most important qualities of strong leadership. Leaders must offer their employees incentives, bonus and some extra leaves to make them feel as an essential part of the organization.

Nature of Leadership

Leaders possess the right to monitor the performance of the team members. They must review the performance of their employees and identify their mistake so it does not destroy the productivity of the organization (Hoch & Kozlowski, 2014). Good leaders concentrate on the strengths of their team members. It does not mean they avoid their flaws. However, discussion about the positive qualities of the employees increases the confidence level among the employees (Leroy et al., 2015). It enhances the productivity of the organization.

Efficient leaders always stand by the side of their organization in every crisis. It is often evident that leaders play crucial role to deal with difficult situation (Antonakis& House, 2014). An exemplary example of this type of leadership is the TD industries. In 1980, while all the banks of Texas was experiencing massive crisis, TD industries was one of them. However, the leaders managed to tackle the situation by taking an innovative initiative. As there was a lack of fund, company offered their staffs a defined retirement plan and asked them to invest their money into their organization. Employees followed the instruction of the management and provided them 30% more from the company’s expectation. This unique and sincere step of the leader helped the organization to deal with the crisis and provided them sufficient fund to stabilize the company("Mechanical Construction and Facility Services | TDIndustries", 2017).

Effective leadership signifies a strong relation between the leader and his subordinates. Great leaders pay close attention to the problems of the team members. They include some strategies and policies like zero tolerance policy, sexual harassment policy to influence the participation of the employees in the organization (Bergh et al., 2016). Addressing every employees individually is the sign of a strong and transparent leadership. Great leaders often discuss with the subordinates about their work experience. It is can be seen in many organization that leaders provide some valuable advice to their employees about their personal life or health related issues. They refer them to another source that can be useful for the employees to give trauma support, financial support, counselling. An exemplary example of such organization is Canyon Coal. The leaders of this organization is very much concerned about the well-being of their employees (Canyon Coal. 2017).

There are five primary styles of leadership, they are- Laissez- Faire, Autocratic, Participative, Strategic, Team leadership, Transactional, Transformational, cross-cultural, facilitative leadership. These leadership styles influence the organizational development and decision-making process differently (Lussier&Achua, 2015).

In Laissez- Faire leadership leaders do not provide their regular feedback to their subordinates and do not supervise them properly. The employees with high experience and quality will be able to survive under this type of leadership (Tourish, 2014). However, not every employees of an organization possesses these high qualities. This type of leadership is harmful for the growth of the organization. This style of leadership hinders the productivity. This leads the organization to meet an awful consequence. Leaders do not interfere in employee’s activity. This leadership style is based on Behavioural theory of leadership, as this leadership style is influenced by the behaviour of the leaders. The lazy or distracted behaviour of the leaders do not allow him to participate in the decision making process of the team. Leaders often overlook many activities of the group due to such practices. An exemplary example of Laissez-Faire leadership style was US President Theodore Roosevelt under whose leadership the Panama Canal project was about to develop. The Canal was expected to start in 1914. The idle nature of the leader did not allow the project to complete.

Leadership Theories


Autocratic leadership style can defined as a process in which a manager makes decision alone. Other members of the team cannot participate in the decision making process (Mihalache et al., 2014). They are bound to obey the decision of the manager. No one can question the decision of the leader. They are not provided any kind of platform to share their view over any issue related to the decision of the manager.  This type of leadership is not beneficial for organizational development. Employee’s dissatisfaction can be increased due to this type of leadership that encourages violation among the team members (Bergh et al., 2016). Theis leadership style concentrates on the behavioural theory of leadership. The dominating nature of the leader leads him to take any organizational decision without consulting with other team members. The behavioural theory has analysed various behaviour or nature of leaders that influences their leadership style. This leadership style is highly influenced by the nature of the manager. Hitler and Nepoleon Bonaparte was one of the famous examples of Autocratic leader.

Participative Leadership is also known as Democratic Leadership. Leaders in this type of leadership frequently meet with their team members to discuss about the strategies and policies of the organization. This type of leadership encourages the employees to participate in the organisational development (Colbert, Barrick& Bradley, 2014). It influences the moral value of the team members and makes them feel as an important part of the organization. As leaders in participative leadership discuss about the decision with their staffs before implementing any new strategy, it helps the team members to accept the changes easily. Participative leadership is considered as one of the effective leadership style but it faces difficulties in making decision within a short span of time, as managers do not get much time to discuss with their team about the decision. This type of leadership style is also a part of the behavioural theory. The nature of the manager influence him to to discuss about the new strategies and practices with his subordinates.  John. F. Kennedy was a perfect example of Democratic leader. He had influenced the whole world by the unique leadership style. Indra Nooyi, the CEO of PepsiCo is an example of participative leader. She always maintains a healthy relation with her subordinates and often meet with them to discuss about emerging projects and several other issues.

Strategic leadership refers to a leadership procedure where leaders fill the gap between the requirement of change and requirement of practicality by their creativity (Wang et al., 2014). This type of leadership is not only restricted to the top position of the organization, people who possess the quality of strategic thinking can become effective and efficient leader in strategic leadership. This type of leadership can be effective to meet any specific goal. Bill Gates is a famous example of Strategic Leadership. His strategies have led Microsoft to become the most renowned brand in computing world. Due to his efficient leadership Microsoft still offers a wide range of products and services to its consumers worldwide.

Qualities of Effective Leadership

 Leaders provide a clear picture of future of the organization and share their vision with their team members (Parris & Peachey, 2013). This practice helps the subunits to identify the objective and right direction. Leaders discuss about their vision about the future of the organization, it helps to create a strong bonding with the employees.  However, it is also evident that team leadership fails to achieve the target. According to Harvard Business Review, team leadership can fail due to the poor performance of the manager. An exemplary example of team leader is Angela Markel. She is well-known as the most effective leader European leader and chancellor for six decades.

Leaders in transactional leadership style maintain two-way relation with their employees. In this type of leadership, leader and his team set a common goal. In order to achieve that goal, they willingly work together. During this procedure, leaders appreciate their subordinates for their performance, or sometime they can scold them as well for their mistakes. Such practices will motivate the staffs to give their best performance to meet the target successfully. Leaders in this type of leadership conduct different training programmes to provide a transparent picture of organizational policies and objectives (Shatzer et al., 2014). Such practices increase the quality of the employee’s performance and restrict them to be involved in any kind of unethical activities. In this type of leadership leaders, possess the right to review the performance of their team member and make important corrections to enrich their performance. Employees often receive many rewards like bonus, incentives due to their remarkable performance. An example of transactional leadership  is Starbuck. Starbucks is one of the renowned organizations in the world and well known for its phenomenal treatment of employees. They consider their employees as a key element of their organization. They always try to match the expectation level of the employees. They frequently offer insurance, bonus, incentives to their employees. The organization has gone through a rough patch in 1997 when some of its employees were killed in robbery in one of its stores of Washington D.C. The CEO Howard Schultz took a remarkable step to fight with the obstacle. He went to Washing D. C and he was there for the entire week. He stood by the side of the employee's family and provided all kind of supports. The company successfully fought against the crisis under the strong leadership of Schultz. Being a responsible leader, Schultz helped his organization to deal with the massacre("Starbucks", 2017).It is an example of contingency leadership theory, as Howard Schultz, the CEO has set an example of smart leadership by taking this unique decision in the period of massive crisis.


Transformational leadership style focuses on the communication between the leaders and their followers.  In this type of leadership leaders maintain a healthy communication withtheir team members to motivate them to achieve the goal (Bergh et al., 2016).Many analysts claim that effective communication is beneficial for organizational growth. Leaders often follow effective communication strategies to motivate their team members. They use various communication tools to interact with the team, such as- group discussion, podcasts, blog, social network. This type of leadership is very much beneficial to enhance the productivity of the organization (McCleskey, 2014). It provides a platform to the employees to share their opinion about an issue. This type of leadership demands effective participation of managers. Effective communication increases the transparency level within the organization. Southwest Airlines is U.S based airline. It is well known for its low-cost carrier. Southwest has started its journey in 1967. The airline has workforce of 53000 employees. It is one of the most preferred airline companies among the customer. It is renowned for its efficient customer service. Southwest always plays a significant role in maintaining the expectation level of their customers. During the 9/11 terrorist attack, all the airlines have experienced massive crisis. They were asked to stop their service until the country recovered from the crisis. Southwest authority took a notable initiative during this period. The employees of Southwest are asked by the authority to take their passengers to movies to entertain them. After the 9/11 attack, Airline companies were forced to terminate their employees. Within the three days of the terrorist attack, Southwest authority declared that they would retain all their employees. As opined by the James Parker, CEO of Southwest, Southwest preserves strong business principles. It helped them to take sincere steps during this crisis ("Southwest Airlines – Airline Tickets, Flights, and Airfares", 2017). The CEO of Southwest has followed the transformational theory. He communicated about the problem with his employees and assured them about their job. Another example of  transformational leadership is IBM. In this modern era, the use of social networking sites and blogs has become an integral part of our life. At the time when business blogging was new to the business world, IBM embraced the change and encouraged their employees to start blogging. They introduced a new policy for the employees to encourage them to share their views on any issue. It influenced the productivity of the organization. IBM always welcomes new technologies. It increases the satisfaction level of their employees and the stakeholders ("Ibm.com", 2017).

Leadership Styles


The facilitative leadership is based on the outcome of the performance. Leaders in this type of leadership influence the group to function properly and enhance their skills (D’Innocenzo, Mathieu &Kukenberger, 2016)). They monitor the performance graph of their subordinates and identify their flaws. It is the responsibility of the leader to identify flaws of the employees and encourage them to rectify their mistakes to give quality service to the organization. It is responsibility of the leader to develop the skill of the employees. Abraham Lincoln is a famous example of Facilitative leadership. He is well known for his influential leadership style and motivating nature.

As per the previous discussion, it can be stated leaders are one of the keypart of every organization. They play most crucial role in the success of their organization. In this competitive era, while every organization is giving their best performance to survive in the race they need the guidance of an efficient leader who can show them the right path to achieve their goal. Leaders must possess some basic qualities like determination, responsible, efficiency, effectiveness, so they can motivate them to achieve the target. The main objective of the leader is to lead his or her organization towards the right direction. They are responsible to describe everyone about their role in the organization. They are the representatives of the organization. Good leaders always encourage their subordinates to give their best performance for the betterment of the organization. They work as a friend, philosopher and guide of their team members. There are many theories that define the basic nature of leadership. These theories have enlightened all the aspects of a good and effective leadership. Different leadership styles influence the decision making process of the organization and performance of the employees in different manner. It is seen in the last few years leaders of some leading organizations have brought revolutionary changes in their organization through their effective and efficient leadership. They provide all the supports to their organization to overcome many obstacles. They have set an example of successful leadership.

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