Leadership in the Public Sector

Topics: Leadership, Charismatic authority, Management Pages: 7 (2259 words) Published: May 5, 2008
Positive leadership in the public sector is essential throughout organizations when inspiring employees or associates to strive for excellence. Leadership is not a skill that one is born with. However, there is a small percentage that one could be born with such a gift. Nevertheless, leadership is developed at an early age that leads that is used throughout ones career life. Producing prominent leadership enhances ones ability to perform in a manner that inspires others to achieve as well.

Leadership in the Public Sector
Leadership in the public sector is phenomenal. It is a partial element that is required for an organization to be highly productive and successful. In order for an administrator in the public sector to have an impact on an employee, they must show positive leadership skills. Leadership skills are common throughout the public sector. This paper will examine leadership in the public sector by defining and explaining the concept of leadership, and by stressing the importance of leadership. In addition, this paper will explain the functions that leaders perform, the theorists who have studied leadership, and the effectiveness of leadership in the public sector.

Leadership is the ability of an individual to influence, motivate, and enable others to contribute toward the effectiveness and success of the organizations’ of which they are members. Organizationally, leadership directly impacts the effectiveness of costs, revenue generation, service, satisfaction, earnings, market value, share price, social capital, motivation, engagement, and sustainability. Leadership is the ability of an individual to set examples for others and lead from the front. It is an attitude that influences the environment around us. Leadership is more common in the public sector versus the private sector. The exercise of leadership can be categorized as either actual or potential. Actual leadership is giving guidance or direction to an individual. Potential leadership is the capacity or ability to lead. Chung & Lu (2007) stated that “leadership can be categorized as either transformational or transactional.” Bass (1985) found the following:

Transformational leadership as the behavior of inspiring members to create performance above expectations, i.e., by enhancing members' confidence and upgrading the value of working results to inspire members' extra efforts. Transformational leadership comprises the following dimensions: (1) Idealized influence: this dimension focuses on the leader's personal characteristics, which provide his/her mission and vision and enhance their subordinates' self-respect to win their respect and trust; (2) Individualized consideration: this dimension focuses on the leader's concerns about every employee's development and differences. This type of leader not only satisfies employees' current needs, but also assists them in fulfilling their potential; (3) Intellectual stimulation: this dimension focuses on the leader encouraging subordinates to use their experience and knowledge to solve problems. Employees are also encouraged to perceive reality from different viewpoints in order to modify their beliefs and values; (4) Inspirational motivation: this dimension focuses on the leader influencing others through the processes of motivating subordinates to pursue success, sharing mutual objectives with them, and gaining consensus for the important issues in the organization. Also, he defined transactional leadership as a continual negotiation process between the leader and the subordinates, which includes two other dimensions: (1) Contingent reward focuses on setting goals and (2) providing rewards at the right time and in the contingent way. (Bass & Avolio, 1997)

There are three basic types of leadership behavior that occur in organizational settings. The first type of leadership behavior is the introduction of structural change. The second type of...

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Chung, R.G., & Lo, C.L. (2007). The relationship between leadership behavior and organizational performance in non- profit organizations, using social welfare charity foundations as an example. Journal of American Academy of Business, Cambridge, 12(1), 83-87.
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