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Leadership Case Study

Leadership is an attribute that is considered to be an essential skill on the professional front. It can be defined as an individual’s ability to successfully lead a team to align with the goals of the organization without losing his individuality. It is normally used in a professional context but can also be a way of life for an individual. Many feel that to be a leader is to simply delegate tasks and lie back until their completion. However, the definition of a leader could not be more incorrect. A true leader is an individual who carries the enormous responsibility of influencing, inspiring, and guiding his teammates to become the best version of themselves while boosting their skills and aligning them to the goals of the organization.

Leadership is not a quality held by the frail as a leader harnesses the power of his team members while providing them with suitable growth opportunities rather than pulling down on them. Therefore, the actual definition of leadership can be stated as the act of empowering the team to turn them into effective and able leaders of tomorrow. Leaders as individuals enhance the capabilities of the team by uniquely addressing the strengths and the weaknesses of the members and appropriately acknowledging their contribution to the team. An individual doesn't have to be a leader in an organization to imbue leadership skills but it is a psychological trait that can be mastered by all.

Importance of leadership

The global workforce is changing at a fast pace and has become a competitive space with an enormous human resource pool. Therefore, effective leaders are needed to train ad to provide them with growth opportunities. Similarly, leaders are also tasked with upholding the operational, moral, and ethical standards of the organization while ensuring complete trust and understanding between the clients as well as the stakeholders of the company. They also play a crucial role in shaping the organizational culture, policy, and ethical standpoint of the organization. Further, leaders are responsible for aligning the components of the organization together and they include employees, clients, suppliers, stakeholders, and communities. Therefore, leaders are to include everyone in their charts and drive them together towards success. Moreover, the following reasons are also attesting to the important role of leaders.

Task Support

Leaders provide guidance and support to their subordinates and teammates by providing required organizational resources and facilities to help them accomplish their goals with the desired level of standard and quality. The resources can be in the monetary form as well as can be in the form of structure. Subordinates will not be able to fulfill the allotted tasks if such required resources are not provided and therefore leaders are to ensure that all required materials are presented for task completion.

Emotional Support

Being a leader is not only limited to physical tasks and goals. A leader ensures both mental and physical well-being of an organization. Therefore, there are several instances in a workplace when an employee is not able to perform well due to some emotional or mental strain. Such can also hugely impact productivity. Therefore, a good leader ensures that he provides much-needed support during such times and does his best to uplift his spirits. Doing so improves the morale of the employees and also builds trust and connection to the leader and that reflects positively in his work.

Building Team Spirit

Individuals are not designed to work alone and therefore require constant support from like-minded individuals to perform well. Leaders build team spirit and amongst the employees for them to work effectively and coordinate their ambitions with organizational goals. A leader is responsible for building coordination and harmony between the team members. Such an attitude towards the team results in positive work energy and better coherence within the team ultimately relating to better productivity and improved quality.

Motivation

At times, it is human nature to feel low and lose the will to work. Such occurrences are a common sight at work and are a part of the professional experience. It can be an internal factor as well as can be caused due to work factors. Leaders understand when their subordinates require some motivation to rise to the challenge and continue doing to not affecting their professional outlook. They are responsible for motivating people to rise to action and arise their willingness to work. Doing so provides the employees a warm environment for development and growth and also the commitment between the leader and the organization takes a boost.

Feedback

A leader is an entity that is responsible for the performance of his team. Therefore, a leader ensures that his team is working to the best of their capabilities by constantly monitoring their performance and providing feedback. It is human nature to seek guidance and feedback while working towards a defined goal and leaders provide that to their employees.

Organizational Change

Competent leaders effectively convince members in terms of bringing about an organizational change following the needs and benefits of the organization. Many times, people rebel against such changes but leaders ensure that such a process is well explained to the members of the workforce and a smooth process is followed.

Maintenance of Discipline

Leaders influence the workforce with their air of command and standard of practice. They also wield a considerable amount of power in enforcing discipline throughout the organization. Members follow the rules and regulations set by the leader if they have confidence and commitment towards their leader. Leadership qualities are known to promote harmony, teamwork and facilitate healthy communication.

Leadership Styles

Leadership is not bound by a single style and has several variants marked by their trademark traits. Therefore, this section provides a piece of in-depth knowledge about the different kinds of leadership styles and techniques.

Authoritarian Leadership

This style of leadership allows the designated leader to set target expectations and define desired outcomes. This can be a successful style of leadership if the leader is the one with the most amount of experience and knowledge. Such a style of leadership works best under conditions when less time is provided for the task to be fulfilled. However, it greatly limits the creativity of the team members as they are subject to delegated tasks in a stated method. Such a style of leadership is used when team members require clear guidelines and are new in the professional space.

Advantages

Disadvantages

A leader is clearly emphasized

The creativity of the team is limited

It is considered to be a time-saving method

Such a style of leadership can lead to an unhappy workforce

Provides consistent results

Reduces group bonding and strips collaboration

Reduces mistakes

Increased employee turnover rate

 

Participative Leadership 

This particular style of leadership is based on democracy and focuses on involving the team members in the decision-making process. Such a style of leadership makes the members feel inclusive and also boosts their motivation. However, it is essential to note that even though the team members are included in the decision-making process and are entitled to provide their views and opinions, the last decision is made by the leader. It is a collaborative style of leadership but can be time-consuming in case of disagreements.

Advantages

Disadvantages

It greatly increases employee satisfaction and also motivates them

It can be time-consuming to reach a common consensus

It greatly encourages creativity

Employees can rebel if their decision is not taken into accordance at the end

Increases team bonding and participation

Significant communication gaps can happen

Provides a positive impact on productivity

Unskilled employees can provide poor opinions and the decision-making process can be a risk

 

Delegative Leadership

As suggested by the name, it focuses on delegating initiative to the team members. It can prove to be a successful style of leadership if the team members are competent, skilled, and knowledgeable. However, conflicts are a common occurrence in terms of leadership as such due to differences in opinions. Thus, it can be a demotivating factor for the employees.

Advantages

Disadvantages

It is great to boost employee creativity

Conflicts are a common occurrence

It creates a positive work environment

It can lead to high employee turnover rates

Employees with competence and experience can greatly benefit from this leadership style

Adapting to change can be difficult

 

Transactional Leadership

Infused by the word transaction, the meaning of the same stems clear as leaders provide rewards for positive work and punishment for negative output. The leader defines and sets clear goals and not adhering to them can result in punishments and penalties being imposed on the employees. However, if goals are successfully met or achieved better than expected then the employees are equally rewarded.

Advantages

Disadvantages

Time-bound and achievable goals are created by the leaders

Employee creativity is minimized

It minimizes conflicts among team members

No room for mistakes for the employees

Rewards and punishments are based on employee performance

Constant punishment can reduce employee morale

Productivity is increased

High employee turnover rates

 

Transformational Leadership

Under this sort of leadership, a leader sets a vision and encourages their followers to achieve them. Leaders here empower their employees and serves as role models.

Advantages

Disadvantages

It features a lower employee turnover rate

Consistent motivation and feedback is required

It builds up employee morale

Employees need to agree to tasks

It enhances employee innovation and creativity

At times, protocols and rules can be broken

Quality of work is enhanced

Leaders at times can deceive employees

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