Developing Strategic Management and Leadership Skills

Research Paper (postgraduate), 2013

15 Pages, Grade: B




1.0 Strategic management and leadership
1.1 Link between strategic management and leadership
1.2 Impact of management and leadership styles on strategic decisions
1.3 Leadership styles in different situations of an organization

2.0 Leadership and management theories to support the strategic direction
2.1 Impact of management theories on organizational strategy
2.2 Impact of leadership theories on organizational strategy
2.3 Leadership strategy that supports organizational direction

3.0 Current leadership requirement of an organization and planning to deal with future situations
3.1 Current leadership requirement of a firm
3.2 Developing plan to deal with future situations requiring leadership

4.0 Developing leadership skills and evaluation of leadership theories to develop leadership skills
4.1 Developing leadership skills
4.2 Evaluation of leadership theories to develop leadership skills


References and Bibliography


Strategic management is the overall activities of the managers to carry out the mission, vision and values of the organization. It is different from management in the field of analyzing the vision and mission of the organization. Strategic plan is prepared in the phase of planning. Leadership is the process of motivating employees to achieve goals set by the strategic plan. In different business situations leadership styles gets different. In fact specific situation leads to the adoption of a specific leadership style. In achieving a vision a strategic direction is set for achievement. In strategic direction the identification of the strategic driver is crucial because based upon these firm employ resources to achieve goal. Leadership style differs greatly in different situations. In evaluating leadership inside and the outside of the organizational factors have an influence. In case of visionary leadership the future visions are set according to present firm’s performance.

1.0 Strategic management and leadership

Leadership and effective management are key factors upon which the long term success of a firm is largely depended. The two concepts are of distinct meaning and value for an organization. Leadership skills can be by born or one can achieve this by practice. On the other hand, management skill is generally learned by practice or by consulting with experts.

1.1 Link between strategic management and leadership

Leadership is something which is achieved when a person motivates other persons in a group upon a common goal. The team members should have a definite goal build on common understanding to define and articulate visions and goals. Actually it’s a basement of a successful manager. Strategic planning and management and achieving long term success are the two main goals upon which leadership focuses. (Dess 2005)

Management on the other hand, is concerned with the planning and organizing the firm’s resources, allocating the resources to appropriate sectors to maximize the firm’s benefits, determining policies and procedures to achieve the targeted goal, controlling the overall process to measure the effectiveness and efficiency of operations and motivating the employees by providing awards. The task of managing an organization is lot heavier than that of leadership. Whereas strategic management is the determination and interpretation of the strategies that managers should carry to achieve superior performance so that the firm can get competitive advantages. It is actually a set of decisions that managers adopt to maximize the firms advantage. Difference between management and leadership is shown in the following graph: (MUrray 2007)

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Link between Strategic management and leadership are shown in the following presentation:

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1.2 Impact of management and leadership styles on strategic decisions

Leadership and management styles have significant impact on the decision of the overall organization. The decision of the whole organization level is influenced by the management styles and the leader’s adoption styles. It has an effect on corporate culture also which has an important bearing on the performance of the organization and its overall strategy. The management style of an organization that defines different leadership is as follows: (Duggan 2010)

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Autocratic style merely involves any employees in the decision making process. In this kind of management, leaders take decisions without making consultation with others. The style represents confident leadership. As in the style, leaders make the strategic decisions and in most of the cases the decisions become contemporary.

In participative leadership, leader takes inputs from different levels of the organization. A lot of feedback is taken in the kind of leadership and the decision is made after analyzing the whole style. In the style the decisions becomes more creative and helpful for long term goal attainment. It represents a more contentious workforce.

Delegative management represents a style where the employees are allowed to work in their own way. In the style, a lot of confusion arises. But the approach represents a more sustainable leadership style in long run.

1.3 Leadership styles in different situations of an organization

Prediction of the success of the leadership is more complex than separating few treats of leadership. As researcher fails to obtain consistent results, as a result an importance is given upon the situational factors. So nowadays it is said that leadership is highly depended on situational factors and the success of a leader is embedded on separating the situations.

Fiedler Contingency model represents effective leadership depends upon a proper match between the leadership style of communicating with subordinates and the situation that gives the situation

that give control and influence to leaders. Three key situational factors that determine leadership effectiveness are: (Bolden 2003)

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In the leadership style there are usually two types of leadership:

Task oriented leadership gives a more favorable result then the situation is favorable. This means when the leader member relationship holds good, high task structure prevails and strong positional power is experienced then task oriented leadership gives a good result. In the reverse situation also the task oriented leadership gives a more favorable result. (Yukl 2006)

Relationship oriented leadership gives favorable outcome when the contingency variables are in a moderate position.

Situational leadership theory is a contingency theory that depends on followers’ readiness. The theory offers four different types of leadership in different situations:

- If followers are unable and unwilling then leaders give direct directions
- If the follower is unable but willing then leaders offer high task orientation
- If followers are able but unwilling, participative style gives a good outcome
- Leaders do not have to do anything when followers are able and willing (P. Hersey 2001)

Path goal theory paves the path the employees should follow to achieve the goal. The following situations are directed in path goal theory:

- Ambiguous leadership leads to directive leadership approach
- In case of structured task, Supportive leadership gives the best result x Internal employees need participative leadership
- Achievement oriented leadership holds good when the task is high performing and is ambiguous (Ekaterini June 2010)

2.0 Leadership and management theories to support the strategic direction

Strategic direction is a path that directs a course of activities that ultimately leads to the desired goal of a business that is set upon the mission and vision of an organization. Usually in the process of preparing strategic plan of an organization is set during the planning phase. The processes by which an organization achieves the strategic direction are as follows:

- Creating an overall strategic plan: In case of new business, strategic plan is prepared in the planning phase. Some dynamic organizations update the strategic direction each year. The plan should be based upon the vision and mission of the business. x Identification of strategic drivers: Strategic drivers are the critical factors of an organizations strategy. It helps the business to move spontaneously and implements the strategic direction of a business. For example- Company X follows scientific management to achieve goal then the use of scientific management for goal attainment is known as strategic drivers.
- Strategic decision: Strategic decision is the most crucial decision of an organization that takes into account the organizations resources, people and the corporate culture. It is the basement upon which the success or failure of a firm is dependent.
- Strategy execution: It is the process of making strategic business plan and strategic decisions practicable in the light of surrounding environment.
- Putting the overall process into practice: The driving force of strategic business plan is strategic direction. The statement of strategic plan of an organization becomes the mission


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Developing Strategic Management and Leadership Skills
Prifysgol Cymru University of Wales
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developing, strategic, management, leadership, skills
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Jobaire Alam (Author), 2013, Developing Strategic Management and Leadership Skills, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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