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The style approach leadership focuses on what a leader does and how he conducts himself in the process of undertaking his duties. The leader in this approach has two sets of behavior; the task and relationship behaviors. There are task behaviors, which focus on assisting members in a group to achieve their objectives. Relationship behavior focuses on the comfort of employees, in their groups and the situations they are at.
Blake and Mouton developed a leadership grid that assist in the analysis of the style of leadership approach. The grid focus on production and people concerns which direct the task and process leadership behavior. The production concerns include attention to policy, product development, and process issues among others. The people concerns include the leader’s treatment to the people such as communication, trust, teamwork, and welfare among others.
The grid provides five key leadership styles. First, the Authority –Compliance style concerns the product and undermines the concerns of the people. The employees are treated as result producer; those who do not produce required results are expelled while recruitment others takes place.
The second style is the Country Club Management which is upholds the people’s affair and less concerned with the task. The leader strives to reduce conflict and maintain uncontroversial situations with his people.
The third style is the impoverished management; the leader in this case is not concerned with any of the two concerns. They are indifferent, and they lead with the motion of the organization.
The fourth leadership style is the Middle of the road Management which describes the leader who compromises. His concerns correspond to the concerns of the people at the situation in hand. This behavior confuses the leader particularly when he is leading a large group of people.
Lastly, the grid provides the Team Management; in which the leader emphasis on strongly on task and people’s relationships. Teamwork and participation of employees are essential factors of this leadership style; they feel as part of their organization and they shrive for achievement.
Paul Hersey founded the Situational leadership theory in 1970s, as Live Cycle Theory of Leadership. The foundation of this leadership style is the philosophy that there is no single, perfect style of leadership. The managers should be able to adjust their approach and behavior to meet the need of the situations at hand. It helps the managers to modify their behavior towards employees and tasks to be performed. The style applied on leadership depends on the characteristics and competence of workers. A style of leadership can be applied on several situations; depending on the individual employees different style can be applied.
There are four main leadership behaviors of a leader in situational leadership style. First, is the directing behavior; the leader in this case, defines the roles of each and closely supervises as the followers perform their tasks (Northouse, 2010). This is a one way flow of information, and applicable when people have not reached a certain level of competence. The leader in this case guides and helps the followers to get started in their tasks. Secondly, the leader applies coaching; he defines the roles and tasks with the assistance of his followers. Communication in this style is two sided but, the followers still require direction and supervision.
The third leadership behavior is participatory with a low task relationship focused. This behavior is applicable when the followers are competence but require motivation. The leader participates in decision making while the followers play part in the control of the tasks.
The last behavior of leadership is delegation. It is a low task low relationship focused behavior of leadership. The leader makes decisions, but the followers decide on when the leader should contribute. The followers must be competent and committed on their task.
Transformational leadership influences the change of followers and the society. The leader values the motivation, morale and the required performance of the followers. The leader acts as a role model who inspires and challenges his followers to work hard particularly during the time of hardship.
There are four types of transformational leaders. The idealized (charismatic) is termed as the ultimate transformational leader. His personality is appealing to his followers, and can easily influence them to act the wants he without complaining on him. He can easily bridge the gap between the organization and the people’s needs. The leader using this style communicates victory to his followers (Northouse, 2010).
A Revolutionist leader calls for his follower to sacrifice for the sake of others. The aim of this leadership is to change the whole society. According to the leader, commitment, courage, and sacrifice are immensely essential for his followers. The communication skills of the leader determine the success of the leadership.
Transformational leader achieves high levels of support from the followers through the use of five main strategies. These strategies include: modeling the way, inspiring a shared vision, challenging the process, giving others a chance and encouraging the weak followers.
LMX theory of leadership emphasizes on the relationship between the leader and the subordinates in an organization. The theory links the relationship between the leader and each follower who are into in-group and out-group (Northouse, 2010). The inner group relationship is based on trust, respect and royalty while the out-group relationship is based on leader subordinate relationship. The out-group focuses on performing their tasks strictly without any further interaction with the leader.
There are three stages of development of leadership through this theory of leadership (Northouse, 2010). The first stage is the strange stage. At this stage, the leader and the subordinates relates only on the organizational role. The exchange between the leader and the subordinates is minimal, and at this stage, the relationship is that of out-group.
The second stage is the acquaintance stage; the subordinate and the leader start sharing information. At this stage, the leader and the subordinates want to learn each other before they fully develop a strong relationship. They start developing trust, respect and interest towards each other.
The last stage is the mature-partnership; the subordinates and the leader develop a remarkably strong relation ship. They attach importance of the other and depend on each other. The leader enjoys the achievement of objective as the subordinates commit their energy and skills towards the organizational goals. The subordinate enjoys the communication of feedback and preference.