Contingency Theories of Leadership

1622 Words Apr 14th, 2014 7 Pages
Contingency Theories of Leadership
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Leadership is considered by psychologists and organizational researchers as one of the most multifaceted and complex phenomena (Field & Seters, 1990). As a result of its complexity, leadership is one of the most misconceived phenomenon in the whole world. This prompted the researchers to come up with various foundational theories which helped to shed more light about leadership (Burns, 1978). Thus, it is impossible to analyze and evaluate leadership theories without going back to their origins (Field&Seters, 1990)
There are several leadership theories that have been researched, developed and discussed by various researchers. They include;
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(Butler, Consentino & Miller, 2004) However, argued that Fiedler’s theory was more executable in a military environment. In addition, they argued that the theory does not empower the leader with flexibility and, therefore; he may be unable to change his leadership style especially in situations which call for a change. The theory is designed in contrast to this. (Field& Seters, 1990) However, noted that it is the situation that should adapt according to the leader's style and not the other way round. There is a clear image of dependency on the leader's style rather than the follower’s characteristics. As a result, the theory might fail to align with the leader’s orientations of certain situations. This aspect helps in making sure all followers are motivated (Northouse, 2004). This argument is, however, disputed by the proponents of Hersey and Blanchard theory who argues that dependency should always be absent in a leader. Further, they added that dependency should be seen on the followers, whom the leader should lead and guide accordingly. (Schou& Storm, 1980) Further added that flexibility was paramount to making solid organizational decisions. They noted that leaders who regularly encounter more than one problem have the ability to either adapt or change their style according to the situation at hand. This observation sought to overlook training as a possible way of dealing with problems or changing certain situations to align with the leader’s style.

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