1.1 Background to the study
Many nations of the world are presently undergoing serious economic, financial, political, ethnic and religious crises, due largely to the ineptitude of their leaders and ineffective leadership styles adopted. Geographical, social, religious, racial as well as domestic crises among others, are evidences of such ineffective leadership styles adopted towards the accomplishment of set goals and objectives in different spheres of human endeavour. Nigeria as a nation has been very unfortunate since independence to have leaders who lack the basic quality of good leadership with which the nation would have been transformed into a powerful and vibrant nation. This has resulted to the fact that Nigeria, within her very short period of existence as a sovereign nation, has witnessed quite a number of coup-d-tat, which is a direct product of bad leadership. This phenomenon of leadership style inherent in our sovereign nation runs across different spheres of endeavours. It is not uncommon then in Nigeria for various categories of workers and students to embark on strike actions or mass protest to demonstrate their disenchantment with the authorities. Nigeria leaders be it at the Federal, State or Local Government levels as well as the leaders of the parastatals and Non-government organizations have been known to be insensitive to the plight of the masses, so cold and hardened that they are not willing to effect changes in the lives of Nigerians. The public sector in Nigeria has been badly affected by poor leadership style that ESE (2001 – 2003) opined that “The public sector is characterized by generally negative work attitude, low motivational at tendencies and generally low productivity. Leadership is of particular importance in industries and organizations because of its far-reaching effects on the accomplishment of objectives and the attainment of organizational goals. It is the key role in the success or failure of organization and industries. The primary challenge of leadership is to guide an organization towards the accomplishment of objectives. The leader does so by influencing and encouraging employees to attain high level of performance within the limitations of available resources, skills and technology. He inspires others to work willingly towards the achievement of a goal through application of his personal capabilities and qualities. The leaders I therefore expected to have some basic attributes such as skills, intelligence, determination, imagination and courage. He is expected to be a hands-on leader who personally talks to customers about helping them to run their business better. Someone who focuses on “expectations of performance and not on bureaucratic rules of behaviour.” One whose focus is always on solving customers’ problems, one under whose leadership everybody is productive and one who leads by example, making tough decisions. Leadership therefore, is the process of influencing and directing the activities of an organizational group towards the achievement of the group organizations set objectives. In leadership, there is interpersonal relationship between the leader and the members of the group, the intention of which to achieve the goals of the organization with confidence and keenness. Cole (2002) defines leadership as a process of influence whereby a member of a group influences others to contribute to the progress or achievement of the organization.
Cole also identified five types of leaders as follows:
Charismatic leaders: The influence stems from personality
Traditional leaders: The influence stems from birth
Situational leaders: The influence stems from a particular situation. Appointed leaders: Influence arises directly out of position Functional leaders: secures his position by what he does rather than by what he is. 1.1.1 Concept of Leadership
The topic of...