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Management and leadership theories and practices

Management and leadership theories and practices

Management and leadership require different professional and personal skills.

The manager must be professionally prepared. And the leader is required to have moral values ​​and personal qualities.

The manager is the engine of the business and the completed projects. The leader is the basis of the development of employees and the organization. Reference BVOP.org: “Manager or Leader: What are the differences and similarities”, https://bvop.org/journal/manager-vs-leader/

The manager demands from the teams and looks for the necessary quality of performance of the tasks. The leader inspires the people in the organization to strive for quality and professionalism.

The manager can evaluate the implementation of the tasks in the project. However, the leader turns the people in the organization into small managers on their own.

The manager punishes employees when necessary or rewards them for a job well done. The leader teaches employees long-term professionalism and gives them a desire for professional and personal development. Reference: “Manager vs leader: similarities and differences”, https://pm.mba/posts/manager-vs-leader/

Both the manager and the leader are invaluable roles that every organization should have. Without one of the two, the company’s business and success are doomed to failure.

Let’s talk about leadership and management

Image and the ability to inspire trust are also not to be underestimated as a factor of charisma. Leaders build in their followers’ confidence in themselves and their views, giving the appearance of unshakably convinced of the rightness of their beliefs, instilling devotion and inhuman moral strength. Reference: “Management approaches in the organizations for managers”, https://medfd.org/management-approaches-in-the-organizations-for-managers/

They manage to be perceived as extremely capable, successful, ingenious, strong, regardless of the degree to which they are. There are no recipes for achieving this attractive external effect, but for this purpose means such as:

Demonstration of sacrifice;
Skillful self-promotion;
Convincing artistic exaggeration of one’s contribution, etc .;

A good and helpful memory would also be useful because it often looks to others as a brilliant erudition and bottomless intellect.
Successful charismatic leadership requires leadership and personality. The leader has no deputies or successors, which is as good as it is dangerous. Reference: “Knowledge and skills of the manager”, https://projectmanagement.news.blog/2021/07/09/knowledge-and-skills-of-the-manager/

No matter how bright the leader’s personality is, more prerequisites are needed for charismatic leadership:
– a certain characteristic of the followers;
specifics of the situation;

Both leadership and management are success and positive emotions

Success can only come about if people identify with the leader and look at events and the future. Emotional attachment is at the heart of the identification in question. It makes the follower define himself, his values ​​, and his goals through his leader: he seeks to imitate him and feels his approval. It is also a question of an increased emotional status of the follower. Reference: “The profession of the manager: How to become one”, https://scrumtime.org/profession-of-the-manager/

All research confirms that subjects are more aroused when they listen to inspiring speeches than when they are engaged in something else. This elevated emotional state results in more hard work and is one of the desired effects of leadership. The following characteristic of the followers is highly connected with the identification of the leader – voluntary readiness for obedience. Reference: “Fundamentals of management and classification of management functions”, https://www.libraryofmu.org/fundamentals-of-management/

It is about the fact that in the conditions of good arithmetic leadership the followers accept the leader unconditionally, they want to obey him and believe in the correctness of his ideas. Each of us has met people who radiate authority, seem to us bearers of power and authority, who “go” to them, and seem to be given to them from above. After all, strongly influenced by different natures, emotionally charged, the followers who identify with the leader feel a sense of special power.

Leader-followers link

The environment of the leader-follower relationship also matters. The situation sometimes favors the deployment of potential leadership in real life, and sometimes hinders it. It is considered particularly favorable in this case if situational characteristics are present here:
– the presence of a crisis. When something threatens our basic security needs, and we do not have enough of our own, inner strength and ability not only to resist it but sometimes even to understand it, the hope of something more powerful than us and able to solve us comes on the agenda. driver problem;
– Existence of interconnected tasks, ie. the extent to which the performance of a task requires general and coordinated conditions by the members of the group;

Situational leadership theories

There is a whole class of concepts about leadership, sometimes grouped under the common name of “situational”. Among them, the one that stands out the most is Fred Fiedler’s situational model. It is also known as the contingent model. Fred Fiedler focuses on the situation and identifies 3 factors influencing the leader’s behavior:

1. The relationship between the leader and team members – implies loyalty of subordinates, trust in the leader, and sympathy for his personality.

2. Definiteness (structuredness) of the tasks – it is understood: it should be the meeting often, habitual, well structured, and formulated. Reference: “Organizational and management structures”, https://pgov.org/organizational-and-management-structures/

3. Official powers – the amount of power associated with the position of the leader, which allows him to use the remuneration, as well as the degree of support that the formal organization provides to the leader.
In favor of the situation, Fiedler determines the extent to which a situation allows the leader to exert influence on the group.

Task-oriented leaders are more effective

With high and low favoritism, task-oriented leaders are more effective. This is because their job responsibilities are strong, the task is well structured and the relationship with the staff is good. At the other extreme, the powers are weak, the task is unstructured and the relationship is bad. Reference: “The Manager and the Leader as sources of motivation”, https://projectmanagement.freesite.host/the-manager-and-the-leader-as-sources-of-motivation/

Task-oriented management style is also no better. When the situation is moderately favorable, the people-oriented behavior of the leader is more effective.

Fiedler’s model has its drawbacks. This model in many cases gives mediocre results or is inapplicable. However, his positive qualities are more, the biggest contribution being the attempt to cover three characteristics of the situation, influencing the behavior of the leader.

The “path-goal” model developed by Mitchen and House is a situational model of leadership, very close to Fiedler’s and the theory of expectations of motivational theories. Reference: “Motivating the behavior of the manager”, https://agileprojectmanagement.home.blog/2021/07/10/motivating-the-behavior-of-the-manager/

It is based on the relationships known to us from the theory of expectations – productivity, productivity – results, and valence (expected value of remuneration).

According to this model, the leader can encourage subordinates to achieve the goals of the organization, influencing the path to achieve these goals. The leader can increase the personal benefit for the subordinate to make the path to the goal easier, to increase the satisfaction of the subordinate. Reference: “Basic theories of leadership and management”, https://projectmanagement.jdevcloud.com/basic-theories-of-leadership-and-management/

House initially exhibited two styles:

Style of support – analogous to the style, oriented to people;
Instrumental style – analogous to the orientation to the tasks.

He later added two more styles:

Encouraging participation – the leader shares the information with his subordinates and uses their ideas and suggestions, ie. emphasis is placed on consultation;

Orients to success – setting difficult goals for subordinates with the expectation that they will give their best. The leader encourages their confidence that they can work effectively.

The attitude of the leader to his subordinates

It should be noted that the attitude of a leader to his followers is not the same.

There are followers, for example, who need additional motivation and others who do not need it. Since this is the case, we should ask ourselves whether there is an optimal way for leaders to conform to their various followers.

The answer depends on the situation. Hersey and Blanchard are trying to clarify what exactly depends on ie. what “leadership success” means.

They derive two dimensions by which any leadership can be considered: the so-called targeted behaviors (the degree to which the leader delegates responsibility to followers) and interpersonal behaviors (the degree to which the leader engages in two-way communication with followers).

These two dimensions, taken separately or in combination, highly determine leadership success.

But which combination of these will be appropriate depends on the so-called. maturity of the followers. By “mature” performers here is not meant age and experience.

By “maturity” it meant the ability of the individual to take responsibility for his behavior, his desire to achieve the goal, as well as his education and experience concerning the specific task to be performed.

According to Hursey and Blanchard, the concept of “maturity” is not a constant characteristic of individuals or groups, but rather a characteristic of the specific situation.

If we assume that there are two degrees: high and low of the so-called. targeted and interpersonal behavior, we could be based on possible combinations between them to distinguish four styles of leadership:

The first style has a high degree of task orientation and a lower degree of human relations.

This style is called giving directions. It is suitable for subordinates with a low degree of maturity.

In this case, this style is completely appropriate, as subordinates are unwilling or unable to be responsible for the specific task. They just need proper instructions from management and strict control.

The second style (selling) means that the manager is equally oriented to the tasks and human relations.

In this situation, subordinates want to take responsibility, but they can’t because they have an average level of maturity. In this way, the leader chooses task-oriented behavior to give specific instructions to his subordinates (what and how to do).

At the same time, he maintains their desire and enthusiasm so that they can complete the task.

The third style is characterized by a moderately high degree of maturity. In this situation, subordinates can but do not want to, be responsible for the task.

Managers combine a low degree of task orientation and a high degree of human relations

For a manager who combines a low degree of task orientation and a high degree of human relations, the style based on the participation of subordinates in decision-making will be most appropriate.

This is because subordinates know what and how to do, so they do not need specific instructions.

The manager can increase the motivation and empathy of his subordinates by allowing them to participate in decision-making and by assisting them without any instructions.

The fourth style is characterized by a high degree of maturity. Here the style of “delegation” is the most appropriate, and the behavior of the leader can combine a low degree of orientation to the tasks and human attitudes.

This style is known in a situation with mature performers, where subordinates know what and how to do and are highly aware of their commitment to the tasks, as a result of which the manager allows them to act alone.

This model, like other situational models, recommends a flexible and adaptive leadership style. Criticism of it is directed at the methods of measuring the level of maturity, at a simplistic division of the styles of giving instructions, selling, participating, and delegating.

By Robert Smith

My name is Robert Smith and I will try to create a nice and useful place. I worked for 5 years as a programmer and 6 years as a project manager. I have 5 years of experience in Agile practices mostly with Scrum teams and working with Kanban. I am currently a Freelance Product Owner.

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