The Role of Leadership in Shaping Organizational Culture

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The Role of Leadership in Shaping Organizational Culture Douglas E. Kronk Walden University Abstract Leadership’s role in shaping a healthy organizational climate has many facets. Both leadership and organizational culture are difficult concepts to define, as many researchers have chosen to define each in various ways. For the purposes of this paper, I examine leadership as a process that guides both leaders and followers to a common goal, that being a shared culture that binds the members together in a healthy and productive climate. I present several leadership factors that play an important role in shaping a healthy organizational culture. The Role of Leadership in Shaping Organizational Culture One of the most critical…show more content…
Leadership Defined Leadership is a complex concept. Stogdill, as cited by Northouse (2013), indicated that there are essentially as many definitions for leadership as there are people who have tried to define it. Many have used management and leadership interchangeably, but this is not accurate. Whereas managers manage resources through the functions of planning, organizing, and administering, in order to accomplish activities and master routines, leaders lead people by motivating, developing, and inspiring individuals under their supervision (Northouse, 2013; Hutchinson, 2013). Given these preconditions, for the remainder of this paper, leadership will be defined as a process by which an individual influences followers to accomplish a common goal (Northouse, 2013). Organizational Culture Defined Defining culture, like leadership, is also very difficult to do. Social scientists routinely disagree about the meaning of culture. Consequently, culture has numerous definitions, many of which are quite different from one another. Historically, leadership research has primarily defined culture in two different ways. The first has been based upon visible characteristics, such as geopolitical boundaries (e.g., national borders) or physical characteristics (e.g., skin color or eye shape) (Ayman & Korabik, 2010). The second has been based upon invisible differentiators (e.g., values, beliefs, and personalities) (Ayman & Korabik,
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