These were basis of leadership research until 1940’s. The great man theory from Aristoteham philosophy asserts that some people are born to lead whereas others are born to be led. Trait theory(ies) assume that some people have certain characteristics or personality trait that make them better leaders than others. (refer to traits as stipulated by Bass (notes)
During human relations era, many behavioural and social scientists studying management also studied leadership.
Emphasis was on what the leader did – leaders style of leadership (Lewin 1951) and White & LippiH (1960) came up with leadership styles:
i) Authoritarian ii) Democratic & leissez-faire
Authoritarian leader is characterized by the following behaviours (refer previous notes also)
i) Strong control is maintained over the work group. ii) Others are motivated by coercion. iii) Others are directed with commands. iv) Communication flows downwards. v) Decision making does not involve others. vi) Emphasis is on difference in status (“I” and “you”). vii) Criticism is punitive (should be constructive)
Productivity is high but creativity, self motivation and autonomy are reduced.
Authoritarian leadership is useful in crisis situations and frequently found in large bureaucrasis such as Armed Forces.
Democratic leader exhibits the following behaviours * Less control is maintained. * Economic and ego awards are used to motivate. * Others are directed thorough suggestions and guidance. * Communication flows up and down. * Decision making involves others. * Emphasis is on “we” rather than “I” and “you”. * Criticism is constructive.
Because many people have to be consulted it takes time and therefore frustrating to these who wants modified.
Leissez-Fair Leader * Is permissive with little or no control. * Motivate by support when requested by the group