Concept of Leadership
Leadership takes on added importance in the global economy. All the established theories of leadership continue to provide understanding and a foundation for the practice of leadership in today’s organizations. Leadership is not a modern day concept. But globalization has changed the traditional view of a leader. Leadership has been discussed from the ancient era. Lots of philosophers lived in western and eastern countries talked about leadership in different perspectives. Leadership is probably the most frequently studied topic in organizational sciences. Despite this, the precise nature of leadership and its relationship to key criterion variables such as subordinate satisfaction, communication, motivation, commitment, organizational citizenship and performance is still uncertain, to the point where Fred Luthans (2008), in his book said that “it (leadership) does remain petty much of a ‘black box’ or unexplainable concept.” All over the history strong leaders such as Load Buddha, Napoleon, Mao, Gandhi, Churchill, Roosevelt, Thatcher, and Reagan have all been highly discussed because of their leadership characteristics. When Margaret Thatcher was prime minister of Great Britain, She was regularly explained as a confident, iron willed, determined and decisive woman and finally called as ‘Iron Lady’. Indian philosopher Kautiliya wrote a book named ‘Arthashatra’ years ago. It carries a number of principles and implications for leaders. Main theme of the ‘Arthashatra’ was the economic wellbeing of people. He stressed the kind of role the leaders should follow in this endeavour. He pointed out three factors for the wellbeing of the people whose responsibility lies on the hand of the rulers of the country. The three factors are wealth of the people – ‘Artha’, Prosperity in moral and religious regard – ‘Dharma’, Satisfaction for the people – ‘Kama’. It is up to the leaders of the country to provide the people with these factors as claimed by the Kautiliya. (Sastry, 1924) A Chinese philosopher named Tzu Tzu had illustrated the tactics and virtues of effective leaders in his we known book "The Art of War". He pointed out the correct way of behaviour for military leaders in China in 400 BC, in winning the battle with enemies. The qualities and strategies were for any warfare associated with good leadership. They are resourcefulness, momentum, cunning, flexibility, integrity, secret, speed, positioning, surprise, deception, manipulation, responsibility and respectability. Master and Slave concept can be seen in Egyptian civilization. It hits leadership effectiveness of its rulers. The highest monuments on the earth; pyramids show evidence of such great leaders. Egyptian philosophy on ruling or leading is totally different from the Asian philosophy. The leader should not work at all. Slaves are for working- It is up to the leaders to get the work done by their slaves using their power. Leaders are for ruling and slaves are for working. (Louise, 1996) Initiative leadership is most appreciated by the Japanese culture. IMAI principle of leadership reveals the Japanese leadership philosophy. Japanese concept of leadership is also worth considering here. It is supervisors that set the goals and then relies upon subordinates to work out the details for themselves in achieving the set goals. Subordinates are allowed to set out their own formula for the work assigned by the leader. Japanese leaders heavily trust in their subordinates in getting work done (Whitehill, 1991). Many authors have identified the importance of leadership. Most of them mainly focussed about leaders’ behaviour in achieving organizational goals. They highlighted the behaviour a leader should exhibit in concentrating the achievement. Successful leadership is always associated with performance. Physical performance of subordinates is not good enough to achieve success. Leadership should bring both the physical and ethical performance. Ethical...
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