Principles of Management. Successful Leaders and Leadership


Essay, 2018

8 Pages, Grade: A


Excerpt

Table of content

1. What are a leader and leadership?
a. Transformational Leadership
b. The influence of a leader

2. What do leaders need?
a. Power
b. Ethics
c. Valuable failure

3. How can a leader cultivate other leaders?

Reference list

A leader in an organization is one of the crucial elements to be successful. How a leader performs leadership in the organization changes entire results in positive ways, and even negative ways. There are many things to understand to be a good leader: what are a leader and leadership, and what a leader needs to perform good leadership. In addition, we need to know how we can cultivate good leaders.

1. What are a leader and leadership?

According to Jones & George, Essentials of Contemporary Management, p.321, “Leadership is the process by which a person exerts influence over other people and inspires, motivates, and directs their activities to help achieve group or organizational goals, and the person who exerts such influence is a leader”¹. In my opinion, a leader is a person who involves with motivating, having trust in followers, articulating what they are supposed to do, and bringing up to their full potential for the final goal. For example, Lee Kun-hee, the CEO of SAMSUNG in South Korea, made his company one of the most successful global companies in the world. The key was his human-oriented leadership style. He never saved efforts and resources for scouting and cultivating men of talent. His primary concern was employing those human resources. Looking at his strategy, talent hunt takes 40 percent of his evaluation for the heads of subsidiaries. Also, humanity takes place in one of the most important factors a leader should have in his view. According to Lee Kun-hee, the true humanity is taking care of followers sincerely, and this does not mean being soft to people, but pointing out subordinates’ fault and educating them. This “humanity” is important because unless a person with authority, a manager or leader, indicates what is wrong, his or her subordinates will never learn, and hence, lose their opportunity to improve. Lee Kun-hee’s such leadership is transformational.

a. Transformational Leadership

Transformational leadership , Essentials of Contemporary Management, p.335, is changing followers in three different ways: 1. Make followers realize how important their task is, 2. Make followers notice their own needs for personal growth, development, and accomplishment, 3. Motivate followers to show better performance not only for themselves, but also for their organization. This is a critical leadership skill because not only does it fulfill a leader’s tasks which are motivating and articulating followers’ work, but also promotes followers to become autonomic. Autonomic followers save the leader’s time and effort, so that the leaders can focus more on finding new ways to enhance their organization. Transformational leaders are charismatic, intellectually stimulate subordinates, and participate in developmental consideration so that they can influence followers. Charismatic leader, Essentials of Contemporary Management, p.336, is a leader who has strong willpower, and seeks a vision improving his or her organization. A leader who does not have a vision cannot survive because the leader does not dream about the better future just like Rome was destroyed. As a leader pursues new ways to advance, the leader also has to make sure subordinates seek changes as well. This behavior is Intellectual stimulation , Essentials of Contemporary Management, p.337. A desirable outcome does not come along with a leader’s own efforts. A leader cannot take care of all the problems in an organization. Hence, the leader needs subordinates to realize and suggest solutions by themselves. This intellectual stimulation comes with empowerment, a leader’s authority to extend a subordinate’s responsibility and authority so that the subordinate can take care of problems without asking for the leader’s decision all the time. Empowerment enables subordinates to be more independent and creative regarding problems they meet. Finally, leaders support subordinates as they support the leaders. However, transformational leaders go further. They give subordinates opportunities to develop capabilities. According to Essentials of Contemporary Management, p. 336, Heinrich von Pierer provided counseling sessions and hiking trips to encourage and stimulate employees.

b. The influence of a leader

Transformational leaders’ influence to an organization is huge. To be a successful leader, one should understand the influence of a leader’s performance can be positive and negative. The majority task for a leader is bringing an organization improvement. A leader has the power to bring success to a poor business. From The Organizational Behavior Reader, p. 461, Darwin Smith changed Kimberly-Clark whose stock had fallen 36 percent behind the general market into one of the world’s best paper-based consumer products companies in the world. When he was a CEO of the company, his team decided coated paper was no longer competitive. Instead, he had vision that if Kimberly-Clark starts to run consumer paper-products business, it will be a world leading company. After he made up his mind, he makes strong decisions such as selling the mills. Although Wall Street analysts downgraded the stock, Smith kept thrusting his plan. After 25 years, Kimberly-Clark owned Scott Paper outright and generated cumulative stock returns 4.1 times the general market. Therefore, with authority and vision, a leader can generate not only small improvement but also huge positive impact. On the other hand, potential leaders should know a leader can also produce negative outcomes even if the leader never intended so. According to Essentials of Contemporary Management, p. 333, one of the Contingency Models, “proposing that whether a leader who possesses certain traits or performs certain behaviors is effective depends on, or is contingent on, the situation or context”, the Leader Substitutes Model on p.333 suggests that there are some situations and organizations leadership is unnecessary or can even bring a contrary effect. For example in Essentials of Contemporary Management, p. 334, David Cotsonas is an excellent English teacher. He enjoys teaching English and learning about his students. Also, he manages his class schedules by having meetings with the director of the school. Cotsonas is already an expertise in his area and clearly knows what he has to do that he does not someone to give him directions. He is also highly motivated that he manages his class by himself. If one at the higher level forces him to follow the one’s direction, Cotsonas’s outstanding performance will be reduced significantly. A leader should encourage employees to show their full potential. Hence, the leader should be able to judge whether the leader’s employees need direction, inspiration, and motivation or not to avoid wasting time and efforts.

2. What do leaders need?

To perform good leadership, a leader needs power, to be ethical, and to be able to learn from failures.

a. Power

When a leader has authorities to reward for subordinates’ outstanding performance or punish for not following the leader’s direction, subordinates will not be able to ignore the leader and hence, follow him or her. Robin Huth, who was a management consultant and conducted management seminars, said, “A subordinate will happily obey his supervisor if the supervisor can satisfy his needs”. That is possible when the supervisor has power to satisfy the subordinate’s needs. Without power, a leader will not be able to direct his subordinates to the way the leader wants to forward because subordinates will not listen to him. Essentials of Contemporary Management, p.325~326, suggests five kinds of power: legitimate power, reward power, coercive power, expert power, and referent power.

Legitimate power is the authority given when you become a leader. Managers give tasks and directions to employees, and hire new employees. These are legitimate power.

Reward power is a leader’s authority to grant something that motivates subordinates such as income raise, vacation, and promotion.

Coercive power is reverse of reward power. This is about punishing subordinates when they misbehaved or conducted sexual harassment, and do not follow a leader’s instruction, by firing, reproaching, withholding reward, and etc.

Expert power comes from a leader’s skills that is hard for anyone to have. According to an employee in SAMSUNG, whenever a rival company offers new products to the market, Lee Kun-hee used to take them into pieces and assemble them all by himself, so that he can understand how the products work. Also, if available, he can have a new idea to apply to SAMSUNG’s products that outperforms the rival’s products. Not any leader, even employee, can do that.

Referent power comes from subordinates’ admiration. When a leader is effective such as giving direction specifically, coming up with innovative solutions and satisfying subordinates’ needs, the subordinates will welcomingly obey the leader. My view is effective leaders should not rely heavily on coercive power because it contributes more to depressing subordinates than motivating. However, referent power makes subordinates naturally follow the leader because the leader with strong referent power takes care of them sophisticatedly and improve working environment.

b. Ethics

Additionally, leaders should be ethical. President Clinton had to come out of his throne dishonorably for committing sexual harassment. Lee Kun-hee was accused for tax evasion which pulled his whole career down reversed the evaluation regarding him negatively. Although he showed an idealistic management every leader would seek that made SAMSUNG one of the most successful global companies in the world, his unethical behavior destroyed and disappointed his great impression and subordinates.

c. Valuable failure

Lastly, leaders should know failure is valuable. According to Don Moyer, “Act-Learn, Act-Learn”, Harvard Business Review, many solutions that leaders suggest do not work because problems are harder to solve than they look, and few leaders are smart or lucky to solve the problems quickly. This means a lot of decision makers fail. What if a top leader keeps dismissing decision makers at lower levels just because they failed accomplishing a goal? New employees will come in and make mistakes again. If a leader seeks only success from subordinates and keeps firing who did not, the leader loses a human resource which gained more knowledge and experience, and became more valuable. People are rational and smart. Most motivated employees who want rewards and have desire to achieve try their best to be improved, thus learn from their mistakes. According to Jang chun-sik, “Lee Kun-hee Leadership Education”, Donga-ilbo, December 2006, Lee Kun-hee told his heads of subsidiaries in SAMSUNG as he passes bottles of vitamins that, “Some of you brought huge losses to the company. However, if I lose you, I become the biggest loser. So please take these vitamins, look after your health and retrieve your mistakes”. Effective leaders should keep in mind that failure can be valuable.

[...]

Excerpt out of 8 pages

Details

Title
Principles of Management. Successful Leaders and Leadership
College
University of Southern California
Grade
A
Author
Year
2018
Pages
8
Catalog Number
V985481
ISBN (eBook)
9783346342157
Language
English
Tags
principles, management, successful, leaders, leadership
Quote paper
Juhyuk Park (Author), 2018, Principles of Management. Successful Leaders and Leadership, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/985481

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