Leadership Theories Essay

1446 WordsNov 13, 20106 Pages
Running head: Leadership Theories Leadership Theories Leadership Theories Leadership is a complex phenomenon, involving the constant interaction of three essential elements: the leader, the followers, and the surrounding situation or context (Wren, 1995, p. 125). Enhancing leadership requires extensive knowledge about each element and the relationships of each element to the other. The execution of this knowledge determines the quality of the leadership skills, which is essential to the survival of the organization. As noted in Bass (1990), effective leadership makes a difference in the subordinates’ satisfaction and performance while making the difference in whether the organization succeeds or fails. Interest in historical…show more content…
Power and Influence theories are similar to behavior theories based on the type of behaviors the leaders use to inflict power. These behaviors include influence tactics such as rational persuasion, consultation, collaboration, and inspirational appeals. Power and Influence theories are also similar to the contingency theory as the influential behavior should be based on the situation to be effective. Contingency Theories The Contingency approach focuses on effective leadership as a result of different behaviors to situational factors. McFadden, Eakin and Beck-Frazier (2005) in the Academic Exchange Quarterly stated effective behavior is contingent on the situation with the external factors being more important than the internal factors. These factors include the type of external environment and the possibility of a crisis; the characteristics and traits of the leader and what the followers expect from the leader; and the type of task and competency of the followers to complete the task. The contingency approach is based on the assumptions that a leader can have different traits and behaviors and be effective; and the situation determines which style or behavior will work best. Nahavandi ( 2006 ) identified Fred Fiedler’s contingency approach to leadership as affirmation that leadership effectiveness is a function of the match between the leader’s style and the situation. Fiedler defined a leadership situation to be
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