Any company, organization, or any other union of people cannot exist without a good leader able to organize separate individuals into a u
nited team which is successful at work, poses new goals and shows a progressive development. The personality of a leader, leadership style, and behaviors make a significant impact on productivity of his subordinates as well as general performance of a company or organization. Having analyzed a variety of scientific studies related to the influence a leader may cause on employee performance and development, it is possible to assume that leadership behaviors especially transformational leadership style may enhance subordinate’s task performance as well as their organizational citizenship behaviors (OCB).
Leadership and performance management
Transformational leadership theory developed by Bernard Bass indicates that the leader of a transformational type represents a personality able to formulate the major objectives of subordinate’s performance, divide tasks and responsibilities, explain the task to each separate employee, and encourage the team to do their work effectively and productively (Bryant,2009). Behaviors of the leader may have a significant influence on the improvement of subordinate’s task performance.
Performance beyond expectations is another trait of transformational leadership. This characteristic is close and very important for the enhancement of the OCB of the employees. The study of leadership conducted by Podsakoff, MacKenzie, et al. (1990), indicates that leaders of the transformational model establish a close cooperation with their followers. Such collaboration helps to increase motivation inside the working team and make the subordinates perform much better (Strauss et al., 2009). At the same time, the investigations of Bass and Avolio state that behaviors of the transformational leaders correspond to the five transformational styles: idealized behavior, inspirational motivation, intellectual stimulation, individualized consideration, and idealized attributes (Sluss et al. 2008). All of the above mentioned styles are closely related to the development and the improvement of the OCB of the employees. Attention paid by the transformational leader to each separate employee, his individuality, professionalism may be used in order to motivate the worker’s performance, realize his role and significance for the process of work, apply the best of his practical skills and knowledge to the improved performance which stands beyond the standards and rules. In general, the transformational leader who aims at changing the standards of performance and improvement of company’s productivity may reach his goals by means of the effective leadership behaviors and practices.
The survey on the impact of transformational leadership on the enhancement of OCB of the employees proved that behaviors typical of transformational leaders cause significant positive impact on such OCB traits as cooperativeness, helping, conscientiousness, fairness, and productive collaboration between the subordinates (Boerner, 2007).
Leadership is one of the key elements of any organization. Leadership development programs represent the specific programs with a definite structure, aims, and procedures. The scientist Robert Pernick describes nine basic tasks which are important for the construction of an effective leadership development program (2001). The major goal of any program is to define the programs task, and the audience it is developed for. The next task is to develop a set of special techniques and procedures aimed at development of leadership characteristics. Apart from that, it is necessary to realize the understanding of leadership by each member of the company before starting the development of any leadership program.
A special leadership program is necessary for the organization with high level of employee performance, but low levels of OCB. The main task of the program is to construct the methods of training oriented on the enhancement of the level of organizational citizenship. The plan for leadership development program may include such steps as evaluation of the existing problem; assessment of the impact of low level of OCB on the productivity of the subordinates and on the company’s performance in general. Secondly, it is important to define the reasons of low OCB.
A effective methods of leadership development is coaching allowing acquiring certain skills as supportability and assistance. These qualities are necessary to improve self-esteem of any employee, to show his role and importance at the company. Action learning is a training procedure connected to leadership development in regard to the problem of low OCB. Action learning contributes to involvement into the existing problems with the aim of their analysis, assessment, and effective solving. A leader having experience in dealing with the company’s problems, or difficulties experienced by the subordinates will be able to apply his professional knowledge in the situations demanding motivation, support, and mutual understanding between the staff. Action learning gives the necessary practice for development such OCB as mutual helping, cooperativeness related to the need for assistance, advice, and collaboration. Another effective training technique contributing to leadership development is constant involvement in the surrounding of the subordinates. The leader who knows his working team is able to improve not only its productivity, but also fairness, productive communication and mutual understanding (Hernez-Broome, Huges, 2009).
All the above mentioned training procedures may be represented by such structure: the central unit of leadership development program aimed at improvement of OCB will be represented by definition of clear objectives of the program. Then follow the strategies aimed at leadership development: coaching, mentoring, action learning. The next stage of the program will be occupied by realization of the acquired knowledge on practice and evaluation of the achieved results. In order to evaluate the success of the leadership development program, it is important to observe it in action. Mastering the basic leadership traits is necessary for the improvement of OCB. If no improvement can be achieved it will be immediately represented on the company’s staff performance negatively. Fairness, helping, assistance, and productive communication may represent the major signs of success of leadership development program. In sum, leadership is a key element of any organizational structure uniting people. The traits of leader as well as his style of leadership may impact a country, state, district, and even an ordinary company united by his vision, priorities, and influence on publicity.
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- Philipp Dunkerbeck (Author), 2010, Leadership and performance management, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/176504