What Makes an Effective Leader

Topics: Leadership, Charismatic authority, Management Pages: 6 (2224 words) Published: January 3, 2014


Leadership is involved within everything around the world. In order for that specific thing to be successful, good leadership must be An effective leader is an essential component to any business wishing to be successful. “Leading is the use of influence to motivate employees to achieve organizational goals. Leading means creating a shared culture and values, communicating goals to employees throughout the organization, and infusing employees with the desire to perform at a high level” (Sambajee, P. 2012). There are a lot of personal qualities within a leader that in turn make them effective. This essay will explore the different elements that create an effective leader with reference to various journal articles, academic books and websites and also lead to a conclusion of whether or not good leadership means being morally good. “We are living in an era when leadership is needed more than ever. The environment today is turbulent, and organizations have had to reconceptualize almost every aspect of how they do business to meet the needs of increasingly demanding customers, keep employees motivated and satisfied, and remain competitive in a rapidly changing environment.” (Sambajee, P. 2012) A main quality of an effective leader is to be able to motivate people. Motivation can be defined as different internal and external factors that stimulate desire and energy in people to be continually interested and committed to a job, role or subject, or to make an effort to attain a goal. It results from the interaction of both conscious and unconscious factors such as the intensity of desire or need, the incentive or reward value and the expectations of the individual and of his or her peers (Business Dictionary, 2013). Examples of these unconscious and conscious factors within a business environment are such like a pay bonus or an increased holiday allowance. The beneficial factors of using such motivational strategies help to boost the morale of staff and the quality of work that they exert within the business. Inevitably this will lead to a boost in productivity and create a higher chance of the business being a success within its market. Previous studies have helped create the understanding that the ability of an effective leader is the result of their own personal traits under the categories of personality, and more recently, physical, social and work related characteristics. “Traits are the distinguishing personal characteristics of a leader such as intelligence, values, self-confidence and appearance. The early research focused on leaders who had achieved a level of greatness, and hence was reffered as the ‘great man’ approach … Generally early research found only a weak relationship between personal traits and leader success” (Sambajee, P. 2012). A reason for this may be because most of the men chosen were political or religious leaders from centuries ago such as Napoleon and therefore does not give quite as accurate analysis of today’s business environment. More recent studies have used new physical, social and work related characteristics in order to create a more accurate investigation as to what distinguishes effective leadership and stress that not all traits are appropriate to every organization or situation. Literature about this, written by Bernard M. Bass breaks down the personal characteristics or traits of leaders. First of all the physical characteristics of a leader are to be energetic and hold a good physical stamina which correlates well with the work-related characteristics of having a drive to achieve or excel at a specific task. The personality of a leader is very adaptable would be one that is independent, self-confident, honest, enthusiastic and has a desire to lead. From this compliant personality, strong social skills also come from this meaning that an effective leader as a person is easy to get along with and is very co-operative. As mentioned before, some earlier studies were sometimes considered...
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