Leadership and Motivation

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Understanding Leadership

* Understanding leadership styles
There are many different leadership styles and different styles work in different situations. In order to have a stronger team, it is essential to adapt to each situation and individual by using a variety of leadership styles. Different factors will influence the choice of leadership styles, including the context (volunteering, private organisation or public sector), the people involved and the level of responsibility, the goal to be reached, the timescale and the personality of the leader. As it has been mentioned above, there are many different styles a leader could adopt. Therefore, it is paramount for the leader to assess the situation in which the leadership style will be used beforehand as some styles will be more appropriate in some situation. A good way to illustrate this idea would be to take one leadership style as an example and evaluate in which context this particular style would be the most suitable and what are the factors that the leader should take in consideration when choosing this particular style. A leader might choose to use a democratic style if he wants the employees to be involved in the decision-making process. This particular style would be appropriate if the leader wishes to encourage team building and participation, especially with highly experienced employees or when implementing operational changes or resolving individual or group problems. In this case, the main factors influencing his decision of style could be: the levels of skills, the nature of the task, for a long term project, within an organisation encouraging employees to take more responsibilities, when the leader trust his staff members, or if there is a large and complex problem to solve which requires a team effort. However, this particular style would not suitable if there is not enough time to get everyone’s input, if it is easier and more cost-effective for the manager to make the decision or if the business cannot afford mistakes. To conclude, it is obvious that external as well as internal factors influence the decision of leadership styles. These factors must be analysed and taken in consideration before choosing a particular style as it would have a positive or negative effect on individual and group behaviour.

The choice of leadership style is a strategic choice as it will have an effect on the efficiency of the team, as well as at an individual level. The aim here is to make a rational and well thought decision in order to have a positive effect on individuals and group behaviour. There are several reasons why a particular leadership style might have a positive or negative impact on the team. The leadership style you adopt in different situations can influence both how well your group accomplishes its goals and how well it maintains itself. Depending on the style, it is important for the leader to observe the group to get a greater understanding and feel of what needs to be improved or what needs to be changed. Some leadership styles might have a negative impact on the group when used in the wrong context. For example, if the manager provides little or no direction and give employees freedom as much as possible, the style can be defined as a laissez faire style. All authority and power is given to the employees and they must determine goals, make decision, and resolve problems on their own. This choice of style is likely to have a negative effect on the group behaviour if the employees feel insecure about the unavailability of the manager or if the manager doesn’t understand his responsibilities and is hoping for employees to deliver for him. However, this choice of leadership style is more likely to have a positive impact if the employees are highly skilled, educated, experienced and trustworthy. In conclusion, it is paramount for the leader to understand the context as well as the people he is working with, in order to choose the most suitable...
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