Leadership is a special form of power, one that involves the ability, based on the personal qualities of the leader, to elicit the followers’ voluntary compliance in a broad range of matters. Leadership is distinguished from the concept of power in that it entails influence, that is, change of preferences, while power implies only that subjects’ preferences are held in abeyance (Edition, 1965). There are two approaches that we are going to discuss in this paper, the leader trait approach and the leader behavior approach.
Leadership trait theory is the idea that people are born with certain character traits. Since certain traits are associated with proficient leadership, it assumes that if you could identify people with the correct traits you will be able to identify leaders. Most of the time the traits are considered to be naturally part of a person’s personality from birth. From this standpoint leadership trait theory tends to assume the people are born as leaders or not as leaders (Leadership Trait Theory, 2007).
The leader behavior approach involves either consideration or initiating structure. Consideration is a behavior indicating that a leader trusts, aspects, and values good relationships with his or her followers while initiating structure is a behavior that a leader engages in to make sure that work gets done and subordinates perform their jobs acceptably (Leader-Behavior Approach, 2011). In addition to consideration and initiating structure, leaders use reinforcement and punishment to affect the behavior of followers.
Reinforcement on one hand can increase desirable behavior while punishment can decrease undesirable behavior. Fiddles Contingency Theory One of the most popular approaches to understanding leadership is the Fiddler’s interagency theory of leadership which focuses on two main issues; why would a leader be more effective than another in a particular situation knowing that both have the same qualities and why is a leader effective in one situation but not in another? The Fiddler contingency model is a leadership theory of industrial and organizational psychology developed by Fred Fiddler.
Fiddler’s contingency model postulates that the leaders effectiveness is based on situational contingency which is a result of interaction of two factors: leadership style and situational variableness (Fiddler Contingency Model, 2011). Fiddler came up with a scale to measure leader style and it was called the least preferred co-worker or LAP which is an instrument for measuring an individual’s leadership orientation. The LAP scale asks a leader to think of all the people with whom they have ever worked and then describe the person, with whom they have worked least well, using a scale of 1 to 8.
As for the situational variableness, Fiddler suggested that there is no ideal leader and leaders can be effective if their leadership orientation fits the situation. The contingency theory allows for predicting the characteristics of the appropriate situations for effectiveness. Three situational components determine the variableness of situational control: Leader-member relations, task structure, and leader position power. Leader-Member relations refer to the degree of mutual trust, respect and confidence between the leader and the subordinates.
Task Structure refers to the extent to which group tasks are clear and structured and leader position power refers to the power inherent in the leader’s position itself (Fiddler Contingency Model, 2011 Contemporary Perspectives on Leadership There are several newer approaches to leadership that have been proposed in cent years, they are based on a contingency approach where it considers the characteristics of the leader and the situation they are trying to lead. Some of these theories are: Path-goal theory, the broom and yet model, and leader- member exchange theory.
Path-Goal Theory. The Path-Goal Theory of Leadership was developed to describe the way that leaders encourage and support their followers in achieving the goals they have been set by making the path that they should take clear and easy. In particular, leaders clarify the path so subordinates know which way to go, remove roadblocks that are stopping them going there, and increase the rewards along the route (Path-Goal Theory of Leadership, 2011). In this theory, four types of leaderships are described: Directive, supportive, participative and achievement oriented leadership.
Supportive leadership is considering the needs of the follower, showing concern for their welfare and creating a friendly working environment. This includes increasing the follower’s self-esteem and making the job more interesting. This approach is best when the work is stressful, boring or hazardous. Directive leadership is telling followers what needs to be done and giving appropriate guidance along the way. This includes giving them schedules f specific work to be done at specific times.
Rewards may also be increased as needed and role ambiguity decreased. Participative leadership is consulting with followers and taking their ideas into account when making decisions and taking particular actions. This approach is best when the followers are expert and their advice is both needed and they expect to be able to give it. Finally we have achievement-oriented leadership which is Setting challenging goals, both in work and in self-improvement. High standards are demonstrated and expected.
The leader shows faith in the capabilities of the follower to succeed. This approach is best when the task is complex (Path-Goal Theory of Leadership, 2011). The Broom and Yet Model. The Broom-Yet-Ago Decision-making Model of Leadership focuses upon decision making as how successful leadership emerges and progresses. The parameters shaping a decision are quality, commitment of group or organization members, and time restrictions. There are a number of leadership styles ranging from authoritarian to highly participatory.
In 1988, Broom and Ago created a mathematical expert system as a decision-making device in their work Leadership and Decision Making (The Broom and Yet Model, 2010). The central focus of the Broom-Yet-Ago Decision-making Model of Leadership is to assess how the nature of the group, leader, and situation determine the degree to which the group is to be included in the decision- making process. This is accomplished by a flowchart-style decision making procedure that arrives at a style of decision-making.
These styles are autocratic, consultative, and group. The autocratic essentially is a dictator, taking her or his cue from Transactional Leadership methods, which, in essence say that the leader tells the group, “obey”. The consultative approach has the leader going o the group for suggestions on how to carry out tasks. The “group” method of decision making is the most democratic, where the group ultimately makes the decision (The Broom and Yet Model, 2010). Leader-Member Exchange Theory.
Leader-Member Exchange Theory, also called ELM or Vertical Dyad Linkage Theory, describes how leaders in groups maintain their position through a series of tacit exchange agreements with their members. Leaders often have a special relationship with an inner circle of trusted lieutenants, assistants and advisors, to whom they give high levels of responsibility, decision influence, and access to resources. This in-group pays for their position. They work harder, are more committed to task objectives, and share more administrative duties.
They are also expected to be fully committed and loyal to their leader. The out-group, on the other hand, is given low levels of choice or influence. This also puts constraints upon the leader. They have to nurture the relationship with their inner circle whilst balancing giving them power with ensuring they do not have enough to strike out on their own (Leader- Member Exchange Theory, 2011). New Topics in Leadership Research New concepts and theories concerning effective leadership are continuously Ewing proposed such as transformational and charismatic leadership, leader mood, and ethical leadership.
Transformational and Charismatic Leadership. Transformational leadership is defined as a leadership approach that causes change in individuals and social systems. In its ideal form, it creates valuable and positive change in the followers with the end goal of developing followers into leaders. Enacted in its authentic form, transformational leadership enhances the motivation, morale and performance of followers through a variety of mechanisms.
These include connecting the follower’s sense of identity and self to the mission and the elective identity of the organization; being a role model for followers that inspires them; challenging followers to take greater ownership for their work, and understanding the strengths and weaknesses of followers, so the leader can align followers with tasks that optimize their performance (Transformational Leadership, 2011). Charismatic leadership involves a great deal of theatrical behavior. A charismatic leader is a persuasive speaker, and a master of body language.
Charismatic leaders are great at reading the occasion, and will tailor their behavior to suit the mood. At the same time, they are willing to take arsenal risk and make sacrifices in order to build their own credibility and trustworthiness in the eyes of their followers. Once their leadership is established, they will try to carve a distinct identity for their group of followers, and build an image of superiority for it. At the same time, these leaders identify themselves so strongly with the group that the group and the leader become nearly synonymous (Charismatic Leadership, 1996).
Leader Mood. A leader creates the environment that determines people’s moods at the office and their mood, in turn, affects their productivity and level of engagement. Witness the number of times you may have driven home with an internal glow, reliving a positive encounter with an upbeat and supportive boss, perhaps savoring a bon mot about your performance that he or she left with you on a Friday afternoon. How great it made you feel and how eager you were to get out of bed on the following Monday morning and get back to the office and give that man or woman the very best that you had to offer.
That’s the “afterglow” that lingers and gives you renewed energy to be more productive, to bring your finest talents to work (Leader Mood, 2007). Ethical Leadership. Ethical leadership is adhering that is involved in leading in a manner that respects the rights and dignity of others. “As leaders are by nature in a position of social power, ethical leadership focuses on how leaders use their social power in the decisions they make, actions they engage in and ways they influence others”.
Leaders who are ethical demonstrate a level of integrity that is important for stimulating a sense of leader trustworthiness, which is important for followers to accept the vision of the leader. These are critical and direct components to leading ethically. The character and integrity of the leader provide the basis for personal heartsickness that direct a leader’s ethical beliefs, values, and decisions. Individual values and beliefs impact the ethical decisions of leaders.
Leaders who are ethical are people-oriented, and also aware of how their decisions impact others, and use their social power to serve the greater good instead of self-serving interests. In ethical leadership it is important for the leader to consider how his or her decisions impact others. Motivating followers to put the needs or interests of the group ahead of their own is another quality of ethical leaders. Motivating involves engaging others in an intellectual and emotional ointment between leaders and followers that makes both parties equally responsible in the pursuit of a common goal.
These characteristics of ethical leaders are similar to inspirational motivation, which is a style component of transformational leadership. Inspirational motivation “involves inspiring others to work towards the leader’s vision for the group and to be committed to the group”. Similarly, ethical leadership “falls within the nexus of inspiring, stimulating, and visionary leader behaviors that make up transformational and charismatic leadership”. Ethical leaders assist followers in gaining a sense of arsenal competence that allows them to be self-sufficient by encouraging and empowering them (Ethical Leadership, 2011).
Apple Inc Overview Apple Inc. Is an American multinational corporation that designs and markets consumer electronics, computer software, and personal computers. The company’s best-known hardware products include the Macintosh line of computers, the pod, the phone and the pad. Established on April 1, 1976 in Cupertino, California, and incorporated January 3, 1977, the company was previously named Apple Computer, Inc. , for its first 30 years, but removed the rod “Computer” on January 9, 2007, to reflect the company’s ongoing expansion into the consumer electronics market in addition to its traditional focus on personal computers.
As of September 2010[update], Apple had 46,600 full time employees and 2,800 temporary full time employees worldwide and had worldwide annual sales of $65. 23 billion (Waking, 2004). Apple was established on April 1, 1976 by Steve Jobs, Steve Waking, and Ronald Wayne, to sell the Apple personal computer kit. They were hand-built by Waking and first shown to the public at the Homebred Computer Club. The Apple I was sold as a dartboard with CPU, RAM, and basic textual-video chips less than what is today considered a complete personal computer. The Apple I went on sale in July 1976 and was market-priced at $666. 6 (Apple Inc, 2011). Steve Jobs Leadership Style Steve Jobs was an unconventional leader. His management style wasn’t the stuff of university textbooks – he wasn’t known for his consultative or consensus building approach. He was a “high-maintenance co-worker” who demanded excellence from his staff and was known for his blunt delivery of criticism. But it was his sheer genius combined with his ability to articulate his vision and bring Taft, investors and customers along on the journey – plus the lessons learned in a major career setback – that made it work.
The results: indisputable. A ‘visionary’ is how he is most often described in relation to Apple, the company he founded with high school buddy Steve Waking in 1976, was effectively fired from in 1985, and then returned to in 1997 with a renewed sense of purpose (Unconventional Leader, 2011). Joe Encore observes in The New York Times that Steve Jobs violated every rule of management. He was not a consensus-builder but a dictator who listened mainly to his own intuition. He was a maniacal micromanaged. He had an astonishing aesthetic sense, which businesspeople almost always lack.
He could be absolutely brutal in meetings: I watched him eviscerate staff members for their “bozo ideas. ” He never mellowed, never let up on Apple employees, and never stopped relying on his singular instincts in making decisions about how Apple products should look and how they should work (Leadership Rules, 2011). Likewise, Adam Lashing’s recalled in Fortune a few months ago the moment in 2008 when Jobs gathered the team that had developed the Mobile e-mail system and demanded to know “Can anyone tell me what Mobile is supposed o do? Having received a satisfactory answer, he continued, “So why the buck doesn’t it do that? ” For the next half-hour Jobs berated the group. “You’ve tarnished Apple’s reputation,” he told them. “You should hate each other for having let each other down. ” (Leadership Rules, 2011). Steve Jobs is famed for his ability to give speeches and captivate the audience’s attention. He is able to captivate his employees and audience with the ability of an evangelist.
In this respect we can observe that he possess the charismatic abilities that Dublin demands by communicating his ideas using metaphors and analogies and tortellini. He is a gifted speaker with an uncanny ability to confound his employees and the public with an almost evangelistic delivery. Jobs charisma is largely dependent on his deep knowledge and understanding of the technology he is immersed in. Jobs technical knowledge might not be that of his engineers, however, Jobs has been the founder of Apple together with Waking, and together they developed the very first hardware (Steve Jobs Leadership Behavior, 2010).
Certainly Jobs understanding of the technologically possible combined with a visionary gift help him to develop his visions and then efficiently ammunition them, for execution, to his employees. His charisma enables him to whip up the enthusiasm of his employees (job involvement) to achieve more by doing seemingly impossible tasks, and also convince customers to buy Apple products. His charisma type could be described as being personalized. This means in accordance to Dubbing explanation, that one serves primarily own interests and exercises only minor restraints on the use of power.
In Jobs case this means that he does not only motivate by storytelling but also by force. Jobs is described by some as being manipulative, dishonest, and boorish (Steve Jobs Leadership Behavior, 2010). An indication for this can be found, when he says, for instance: “My job is to not be easy on people. My job is to make them better. My job is to pull things together from different parts of the company and clear the ways and get the resources for the key projects. And to take these great people we have and to push them and make them even better, coming up with more aggressive visions of how it could be. He wants people to follow him, expects obedience and much of it seemingly out of the self-interest, since working at “Apple” is what he considers a valuable goal in his life. In conclusion, we can say he is a visionary type who communicates his visions well in this story telling fashion. This vision, and the way that he can communicate it is the main attribute that makes Jobs being perceived as Charismatic (Steve Jobs Leadership Behavior, 2010). Because of his “manipulative” behavior he is considered by some of his employees as autocratic.
His behavior in meetings for instance is described as being rude, authoritative and obnoxious. Jobs seems to micromanagement at Apple. Jobs admits that there are an incredible amount of up to 100 individuals reporting directly to him. As mentioned above, he is perceived as autocratic. The fact that so many individuals report to him directly is representative for his will and eagerness to hold all the strings in his hands. Total control is certainly the basis for this leadership. We assume that the amount of Jobs’ participative leadership is low.
Anecdotes rumor that he is a rather rude participant in meetings and extremely impatient. This behavior certainly does not contribute to people wanting to voice their opinion and participate. Some of the character traits of Steve Jobs are intimidating high self-confidence, low trustworthiness, rue authenticity, extroversion, assertiveness and enthusiasm (Steve Jobs Leadership Behavior, 2010). Conclusion In general, Steve Jobs personality traits would not be characterized as the traits of an effective leader. In a way, he is far from a classical text-book example.
Nevertheless his charisma, self-confidence and passion for work overshadow all his negative characteristics thus making him one of most successful Coo’s of the decade.