Leadership Theories and Plan

Leadership Theory Review

According to Prentice and Yukl, the definition of leadership has been based on traits, interaction patterns, influence on followers, leader behavior, influence on the organizational culture, influence on tasks and goals, and role relationships (Yukl, 1994). Various approaches are used to categorize the different leadership styles. These approaches include; the power-influence approach, trait approach, behavior approach, and situational approach. The different leadership theories identified through these approaches include the path-goal approach, where leaders motivate the subordinates on the value of the goals to increase efforts. Situational leadership theory suggests that the subordinate’s behavior and maturity determine the kind of leadership they receive. The leader substitute’s theory proposes that, in some instances, hierarchical leadership is unimportant and can be replaced by some functions of the subordinates. Normative decision leadership theory argues that decisions procedures determine a situation’s success. The Contingency theory is where a leader can balance power, the structure of tasks, and leader-follower relationships. The leader-member exchange theory discusses when a leader develops an exchange relationship with the followers. The other theories described are cognitive resources theory, multiple linkage models, and leader-environment-follower-interaction theory.

Evolution of Leadership

The evolution of leadership dates back to the time of expansion and the industrial revolution. At this time, a leader was one great individual. Over the years, the concept of leadership has evolved, improving over and over again. Leadership theories like trait and behavioral have led to the birth of leadership influenced by the environment and authentic leadership concepts. In modern times, the new leadership models invert the traditional vertical theories to a flattened one, leading to dynamism where leaders can be interchanged based on the work being done (Hunt & Fedynich, 2018).

Transformational leadership

In the transformational leadership model, the leader works with subordinates to identify the required change. They do this to motivate and create a vision of the organization’s goals to guide the team to achieve them. Participative leadership, on the other hand, is a style of management whereby the leadership allows the subordinates to participate in the organization’s decision-making process. In this type of leadership, the subordinates know much about the company issues, and during the decision-making process, the idea supported by many becomes the selected decision (Arnold, 2013). An example of transformational leadership is a typical organization where the director comes to operational levels of work to work with the team to give them inspirational motivation, intellectual stimulation, idealized influence, and individualized consideration.

Figure 1: Transformational Leadership.

Source: (Juneja, 2015)

Situational Leadership

Situational leadership is a style that is subjective to the behavior and traits of the subordinates. The leaders examine the team members on various variables involving their traits and behaviors. This informs the leader on the leadership style to adopt that fits the team they manage concerning the set organizational goals. It is a widely used style since leadership can no longer be based on positional power. Various types of situational leadership theory include directing, coaching, supporting, and delegating (Ghazzawi et al., 2017). An example of situational leadership is in an organization with employees from diverse backgrounds. The leader may need to study each employee and understand the best style based on their average traits.

Figure 2: Situational Leadership

Source: (Situational.com, n.d.)

Moral and Spiritual Leadership

Moral leadership involves giving people values and meaning to live by and motivating them to be accountable. Those who use a moral leadership style teach their followers to step up to do what is good and great for the benefit of the organization/ community. On the other hand, spiritual leadership involves where the leader integrates his/her beliefs into all their life activities. This kind of leadership is arguably among the successful ones since the individual incorporates what they believe in their leadership and management (Samul, 2020). Moral leadership may be very important in ensuring that the purpose and goodwill of the organization drives the employees. Spiritual leadership may promote perfection in tasks being carried on. However, these two leadership styles may lead to a work environment with minimal power boundaries, leading to intentionally weak performance by subordinates. An example of organizations where these models of leadership include faith-based organizations.

Figure 3: Spiritual and Moral (Ethical) Leadership

Source: (Wang et al., 2019)

Setting a Personal Leadership Plan

This involves steps that guide one to develop an actionable plan.

  1. Defining what makes a good leader: Honesty, ethical practices, problem-solving,, and creativity in management.
  2. Taking a self-assessment: Adventurous, observant, impulsive and team worker
  3. Identify core values: integrity, authority, collaboration, and creativity.
  4. Coming up with a personal vision statement: To be a leader, juniors can look up to and be motivated to perform.
  5. Analyzing people’s perception about you: A go-getter and a great performer who works despite the power position.
  6. Identifying leadership skills gap: Problem-solving skills
  7. Setting goals: To mentor over ten subordinates and nurture them into leadership within each decade.
  8. Writing an action pla

Development Spiral

This is a type of development leadership where one begins with the value and attributes that they have. This is followed by an upward movement involving learning and unlearning traits to possess the required attributes. An example is when a manager is hired and has only integrity but is lazy. With time he learns business acumen, industry, and power management and unlearns laziness.

Figure 4: Development Spiral

Source: (Venkat, 2019)

5-year leadership development Plan

5-year leadership development Gantt Chart