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Chapter 9

Chapter 9 BU288.docx

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Ping Zhang

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BU288 Chapter 9 - Leadership Week 9 What is Leadership? -Leadership the influence that particular individuals exert on the goal achievement of others in an organizational context -Effective leadership exerts influence in a way that achieves organizational goals by enhancing productivity, innovation, satisfaction, and commitment of the workforce -Strategic leadership leadership that involves the ability to anticipate, envision, maintain flexibility, think strategically, and work with others to initiate change that will create a viable future for the organization -Strategic leaders can provide an organization with a sustainable competitive advantage by helping their organizations compete in turbulent and unpredictable environments and by exploiting growth opportunities -Any organizational member can exert influence on other members -The presence of a formal leadership role is no guarantee that there is leadership Are Leaders Born? The Search for Leadership Traits Research on Leadership Traits -Traits individual characteristics such as physical attributes, intellectual ability, and personality -Many traits are not associated with whether people become leaders or how effective they are -Sometimes we think that people are more likely to be a leader or that they are a more effective leader simply because they possess certain characteristics that we believe re associated with leadership -Some traits are associated with leadership -Many firms use personality tests and assessment centres to measure leadership traits when making hiring and promotion decisions Limitations of the Trait Approach -Even though some traits appear to be related to leadership, there are several reasons why the trait approach is not the best means of understanding and improving leadership -In many cases, it is difficult to determine whether traits make the leader or whether the opportunity for leadership produces the traits -Even if we know that dominance, intelligence, or tallness is associated with effective leadership, we have few clues about what dominant or intelligent or tall people do to influence other successfully -As a result, we have little information about how to train and develop leaders and no way to diagnose failures of leadership -The most crucial problem of the trait approach to leadership is its failure to take into account the situation in which leadership occurs -Traits alone are not sufficient for successful leadership The Behaviour of Leaders Consideration and Initiating Structure -Consideration the extent to which a leader is approachable and shows personal concern and respect for employees -Initiation structure the degree to which a leader concentrates on group goal attainment -The structuring leader clearly defines and organizes his or her role and the role of followers, stresses standard procedures, schedules the work to be done, and assigns employees to particular tasks BU288 Chapter 9 - Leadership Week 9 The Consequences of Consideration and Structure -Consideration and initiating structure both contribute positively to employees motivation, job satisfaction, and leader effectiveness -Consideration tends to be more strongly related to followed satisfaction, motivation, and leader effectiveness, while initiating structure is slightly more strongly related to leader job performance and group performance -Consider the following: -When employees are under a high degree of pressure due to deadlines, unclear tasks, or external threat, initiating structure increases satisfaction and performance -When the task itself is intrinsically satisfying, the need for high consideration and high structure is generally reduced -When the goals and methods of performing the job are very clear and certain, consideration should promote employee satisfaction, while structure might promote dissatisfaction -When employees lack knowledge as to how to perform a job, or the job itself has vague goals or methods, consideration becomes less important, while initiating structure takes on additional importance Leader Reward and Punishment Behaviours -Leader reward behaviour the leaders use of compliments, tangible benefits, and deserved special treatment -When such rewards are made contingent on performance, employees should perform at a high level and experience job satisfaction -Leader punishment behaviour the leaders use of reprimands or unfavourable task assignments and the active withholding of rewards -Contingent leader reward behaviour was found to be positively related to employees perceptions, attitudes, and behaviours -Contingent leader punishment behaviour was related to unfavourable outcomes Situational Theories of Leadership -The basic premise of situational theories of leadership is that the effectiveness of a leadership style is contingent on the setting Fiedlers Contingency Theory and Cognitive Resource Theory -Contingency Theory - theory that states that the association between leadership orientation and group effectiveness is contingent on how favourable the situation is for exerting influence -Leadership orientation is measured by having leaders describe their least preferred co-worker (LPC) -The LPC score reveals a personality trait that reflects the leaders motivational structure Situational Favourableness -The contingency party -It specifies when a particular LPC orientation should contribute most to group effectiveness -Factors that affect situational favourableness, in order of importance, are the following: -Leader-member relations when the relationship between the leader and the group members is good, the leader is in a favourable situation to exert influence -Task structure when the task at hand is highly structures, the leader should be able to exert considerable influence on the groupBU288 Chapter 9 - Leadership Week 9 -Position power the formal authority granted to the leader by the organization to tell others what to do -The situation is most favourable for leadership when leader-member relations are good, the task is structured, and the leader has strong position power Cognitive Resource Theory -Cognitive resource theory a leadership theory that focuses on the conditions in which a leaders cognitive resources (intelligence, expertise, and experience) contribute to effective leadership -The essence of CRT is that the importance of intelligence for leadership effectiveness depends on the following conditions: the directiveness of the leader, group support or the leader, and the stressfulness of the situation -Experience predicts performance in high-stress situations Houses Path-Goal Theory -Path-Goal Theory theory concerned with the situations under which various leader behaviours are most effective The Theory -Such goals might include a promotion, a sense of accomplishment, or a pleasant work climate -The opportunity to achieve such goals should promote job satisfaction, leader acceptance, and high effort -The effective leader forms a connection between employee goals and organizational goals -To provide job satisfaction and leader acceptance, leader behaviour must be perceived a
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