Leadership: Why so important and how to be a leader?
Updated: Jul 6, 2022
Media and technology have opened our eyes to a rich diversity of human beliefs and their expression. Leadership behavior is clearly linked to motivation, productivity and quality. Power needs to be accompanied by responsible leadership. This has a significant impact on which people we trust, who we are prepared to work for and do business with, and also invest in and commit to. Leaders must be able to lead a whole culture of different values and demonstrably value each person's uniqueness, whilst flexing psychological and formal contracts to compete in the talent wars.
What is leadership
Leadership is one of the key factors in deep relation with the success and failure of a given organization. It is the process through which an individual attempt to intentionally influence another individual or group to accomplish a goal (Northhouse, 2016).
Leadership vs Management
Leadership and management are not synonymous. Good management is a must in all companies. Managers need to plan, measure, monitor, coordinate, solve, hire, fire, and so on. Classically, managers manage stuffs and staffs. Leaders lead people.
Are leaders born or made?
Leadership requires people who have certain traits such as charisma, empathy, strong communication skills and confidence. Many people possess those traits, but many others can develop them through their everyday experiences, and self-development.
We can find people that do not occupy any important position nor authority, yet they still demonstrate leadership through their actions and ability to influence people to act on their visions.
According to modern leadership styles (Harris, et al., 2007), leadership styles can be categorized as follow:
Transformational leadership style
Transactional leadership style
Culture based leadership
Leadership Life cycle transition
Leadership life cycle is composed of five stages:
The time the leader is ‘created” or born.
The time the leader encounter growth.
Then, the time when he/she matures.
After that, a phase of “turnaround” can be observed. It is the phase when the leader recapture the vision of his business/company.
Finally, a leader can decline and finish by dying.
The ability to delegate effectively is a key to progress as a leader. It is frequently the main factor which prevents technically proficient and hardworking middle managers from progressing into senior positions. Everyone believes they are capable delegators but few have the mental discipline and trust in their team to delegate well.
Leadership involves giving staff feedback and news they sometimes do not want to hear. It certainly has nothing to do with the pursuit of popularity. Your relationship with team members should be as working colleagues not friends. Friendship can compromise your authority and ability to get things done.
Team members need space and trust to get on with the job, which does not fit with interfering with their work which destroys authority and motivation. Delegation also involves giving up a measure of control and an acceptance that they may not match to your standards. If you want to be popular then leadership may not be for you.
Interested in Leadership posts? Stay tuned! Our future posts will address in detail the leadership styles and the leadership life cycle. Subscribe to NETO Innovation website to receive these posts directly in your inbox.
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Harris, A. et al., 2007. Distributed leadership and organizational change: Reviewing the evidence. Journal of Educational Change, 8(4), pp. 337-347.
Marques, J.F. (2010), "Awakened leaders: born or made?", Leadership & Organization Development Journal, Vol. 31 No. 4, pp. 307-323.
Northouse, P. G. (2016). Leadership: Theory and practice (7th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage
The Leadership Lifecycle. Andrew Ward. Palgrave Macmillan. February 22nd, 2003.