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Leadership and Team Effectiveness

- Using the research from your literature review, examine how your chosen approach could impact your organization's leaders' ability to exert influence on others and thereby impacting team effectiveness.
- Explain how the leaders' leadership approach could impact team member relationships and their cohesion.
- Lastly, using a leadership approach, devise a plan that will improve team effectiveness in your organization over the next 3 to 6 months. Be sure to include the key stakeholders who are directly impacted by the implementation of the plan.

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The common trait among leaders is the ability to inspire others to follow them. There are various leadership styles and theories and despite the many studies examining and explaining leadership, no perfect theory has emerged to guide leaders, and there is no definitive evidence on which theory is most effective. A good definition of leadership is "the ability to see the present for what it really is, see the future for what it could be and then tack action to close the gap between today's reality and the preferred future of tomorrow" (Cummings, 2012, pg. 3325). Leadership styles describe how the leader approaches task accomplishments. A leaders' approach reflects their personal self-awareness, frames their relationships with others and directs the results. Leadership traits are inclusive of incompetence, rigidity, callousness, corruption and evil. There are also good qualities like understanding, inclusiveness, encouragement, reasoning and democracy. Leadership styles include the more global transactional, transformational, situational and participative, among many more. Leadership style consists of the leader's overall personality, conduct, and how their mode of communication when guiding others toward reaching organizational or personal goals. Research in leadership style has been mostly subjugated to subordinate perceptions of leadership in decision making, interpersonal relations, planning, instructional leadership, and management efficiency.
In exploring leadership styles, organizational culture can be a relevant driver of the leadership style. Organizational culture is "the set of key values, assumptions, understandings, and norms that is shared by members of an organization and taught to new members as correct" (Azanza and Molero, 2013, p. 46). For example, authentic (participative) leadership is found in organizations with a flexible-oriented culture. Authentic leadership is a contributor of positive employee attitudes and they have higher levels of job satisfaction. According to Azanza and Molero, A flexible-oriented organization promotes openness to new ideas and supports the development of those ideas. This type of organization encourages spontaneity, change responsiveness, adaptability and readiness to achieve growth innovation and creativity.
Participative leadership is "a process that draws from both positive and psychological capacities and a highly developed organizational context which results in both self-awareness and self-regulated positive behaviors on the part of leaders and associates fostering self-development" (Azanza and Molero, 2013, p. 46). The components of participative leadership include self-awareness, balanced processing, relational transparency, and internalized moral perspective. Participative leaders have been found to promote positive employee job performance, job satisfaction, commitment, work engagement and an extra effort for employment citizenship. A participative leader supports optimal leadership and facilitates positive outcomes.
Another type of leadership is transformational. Transformational leaders "adapt to changes and instability of the situation and involve, motivates, and supports...causes followers to seek rewards within themselves and facilitates their personal growth and self-awareness" (Ruggieri and Abbate, 2013, p. 1172). Transformational leaders also promote innovation, intellectual stimulation to encourage employees to think differently when engaged in problem-solving and also challenges old ways of looking at processes. These types of leaders treat subordinates as individuals, consider their needs and provide mentorship.
A culture infused with transformational leaders, causes employees to identify with a team. According to Paulsen, Callan, Ayoko and Saunders (2013), "when people identify highly with the group, they experience the collective's interest as their own self interest...are more willing to limit their own personal gain for the good of the collective" (p. 6) Additionally, employees more identify themselves with a team which leads to group support and creativity. Transformational leaders work together with their subordinates and share goals and visions.
Another style is transactional leadership. A transactional leader is a "negotiating agent who conciliate and sometimes compromise to obtain greater decision-making power within the group" (Ruggieri and Abbate, 2013, p. 1172). A culture of transactional leadership is based on a reward and punishment system aimed at getting expected results. The foundation is "offering rewards to others in return for compliance" (Gittinane, 2013, p.36) and does not work for all organizations. Transactional leadership is also known as an autocratic leadership style and leaders tend to be controlling, power-oriented, closed mind. Many times they do not necessarily like their subordinates unless or until they follow the rules or meeting deadlines. However, these leaders a good at creating structure through a mindset of 'what has to be done, and getting it done'. Unlike the transformational leader, there is no sharing of visions and goals and the focus is on management tasks. Even though there is no identification of shared values, a transactional leader is very effective in meeting deadlines.
A further type of leadership is situational. The situational manager adapts the managing style to manage in particular situations. (Anthony, 2012)This leader has the ability to identify performance and commitment level in subordinates; they are flexible, supportive and directly involved in the development of employees. They are personally involved with the development, define roles, provide emotional support and maintain communications .With situational leadership, it is up to the leader to change his style, not the follower to adapt to the leader's style. In situational leadership, the style may change continually to meet the needs of others in the organization based on the situation. The situational leader does not use just one style but changes styles based on the maturity of the people they're leading and the type of task. According to this theory "leaders should be able to place more or less emphasis on the task, and more or less emphasis on the relationships with the people they're leading, depending on what's needed to get the job done successfully' ( .

-Source: Transformational Leadership Can Improve Workforce Competencies-Thomas, J.
Even though there is no definitive evidence that transformational leadership is the best, it seems to be the most popular, especially when comes to employee motivation. Transformational and transactional are the two styles that are usually contenders in which leadership style is most conducive to a workplace that is not only productive but employees are more focused and happier. Transformational leadership has skilled communications at the foremost and promotes self-confidence, a relationship of mutual stimulation, higher levels of employee motivation, higher levels of employee effectiveness and customer satisfaction. (Curtis and O'Connell, 2011)
According to Curtis and O'Connell (2011) there are four components of transformational leadership:
• Idealized influence, or charismatic leadership, where leaders are admired and respected by those they lead.

• Inspirational motivation, where leaders inspire others with a team spirit and enthusiasm for the work at hand.

• Intellectual stimulation, created by leaders with problem-solving skills, creativity and the capacity to advance knowledge or practice.

• Individualized consideration, where leaders' skills are supportive of individuals' needs. These leaders provide mentorship to support and encourage staff to develop and advance their careers. (p. 33)

In contrast, transactional leadership qualities include the maintenance of the normal flow of operations; discipliners, incentives to motivate employees to perform their best and the sole concern is for a smooth operational flow. The components of transactional leadership are:
• Leaders are aware of the link between the effort and reward.

• Leadership is responsive and its basic orientation is dealing with present issues.

• Leaders rely on standard forms of inducement, reward, punishment and sanction to control followers.

• Leaders motivate followers by setting goals and promising rewards for desired performance.

• Leadership depends on the leader's power to reinforce subordinates for their successful completion of the bargain.
Recommendations for my place of employment would be the transformational leadership style; changes are certain for any organization and while it may seem that situational may be better, it does not cover as wide a range of effective components. The transformational leadership style encompasses situational and is more involved with the employee than transactional. Transformational helps the employee take pride in their work and the organization and while transactional rewards on a short-term bases, long term is what strategically moves the organization forward to achieve its goals.

Anthony, L. (2012). Define situational leadership. Retrieved from
Azanza, A. & Molero, J. A. (2013). Authentic leadership and organizational cultures as drivers
of employees' job satisfaction. Journal of Work and Organizational Policy. 29(2013), 45-
50. doi:
Cummings, G. (2012). Editorial: Your leadership style-how are you working to achieve a
preferred future? Journal of Clinical Nursing. 21, 3325-3327.
Curtis, E. & O'Connor, R. (2011). Essential leadership skills for motivating and developing staff.
Nursing Management. 18(5), 32-35.
Gittinane, C. (2013). Leadership styles and theories. Nursing Standards. 27(41), 35-39.
Paulsen, N., Callan, V. J., Ayoko, O. & Saunders, D. (2013). Transformational leadership and
innovation in an R&D organization experience major change. Retrieved from
Ruggieri, S. & Abbate, C. S. (2013). Leadership style, self-sacrifice, and team identification.
Social Behavior and Personality. 4(7), 1171-1178.
The Hershey-Blanchard Stituational Leadership Theory. Retrieved from

Solution Preview

Leadership approach plays a crucial role in organizational growth and success. It is because selection and implementation of appropriate leadership approach inspires employees positively to complete their work effectively and efficiently. Additionally, competitive and appropriate leadership style maintains interest of employees in their work (Irving & Longbotham, 2006). For ABC Company, participative leadership approach would be most effective and suitable. It is because it is suitable as per the condition of organization and will be helpful to maintain relationship with employees within the firm.
Impact of Leadership Approach
Participative leadership style could influence organizational leadership ability to exert influence on others and thereby impacting team effectiveness. It is because participative leadership approach is effective to motivate employees to give their participation in organizational activities and operations to attain organizational objectives and aim (Wendt, Euwemab & Emmerik, 2009). This leadership style influences self-awareness and self-regulated positive behavior of employees that is also an important part of organizational management and can have significant impact over team management and operations of firm. It is because this approach invites view and participation of employees to improve their efficiency to complete their tasks effectively that could increase ownership feelings among them (Irving & Longbotham, 2006). It motivates them to give their dedication towards organizational growth and success.
This selected leadership approach could influence job satisfaction and trust among employees positively. In order to increase job satisfaction among employees, this approach would be most effective because this approach invites suggestions from the side of employees and motivates them to improve their performance that also enhances their commitment towards the firm (Callow & Smith, 2009). This could be helpful to improve employee engagement, which is necessary to ensure the completion of organizational operations within estimated time and budget. All these show that this approach could impact employees' performance, motivation, commitment and job satisfaction, which are important part of organizational growth (Heinemann & Zeiss, 2002).
In addition to this, participative leadership approach could impact team management and team effectiveness. It is because this approach influences relationship of employees within the organization and helps ...

Solution Summary

In this response, it is discussed how a leadership approach would exert influence on others and have impact on team effectiveness. Also, it is discussed how the leadership approach has affect on the member relationships and their cohesion. Further, a plan is presented for improving team effectiveness.