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Leadership Model Relevance

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Question: Why do you think some of the leadership models that were developed 20 to 30 years ago are not appropriate for today? Why are some of the models that were developed during that timeframe still appropriate for today?

Response: Some leadership models of old such as the Trait Model, Skills Model and Style Model focus only on specific aspects of leadership such as the traits, tasks, roles, personalities, and situations of leaders (Feldman, 2001). Other older models represent a top-down/position power means of "controlling" a group of people. The steady-state bureaucratic leadership models cannot meet the needs and demands of our current, more interactive workforce. The current workforce is looking for leaders who will "engage them as colleagues in meaningful corporate projects, ideally creating a collaborative community" (Unknown, 2007). Although many aspects of these models are still important in leadership today, Team models and the transformational leadership models of the 60's, 70's and 80's have a more comprehensive, holistic view of how leaders influence their followers to create changes toward a vision. The Transformational, Team, and Servant Leadership models are examples of this type of leadership styles. The Servant Leadership Model developed by Greenleaf in the 1970's emphasizes that leaders be attentive to the concerns of their followers, empathize with them, and nurture them (Greenleaf, 2008; Northouse, 2013). These transformational leadership styles lend to empowering their followers to use creative thinking and to work together to meet the goal set before them.

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This solution provides a response to the question of why some leadership models that were developed 20 to 30 years are are no longer appropriate while others are still appropriate.

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I agree, leadership needs have changed, in part, from those models developed 20 to 30 years ago. Many companies focus more on transformational leadership styles, rather than the steady-state bureaucratic leadership models formerly touted. Communication ...

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  • Ed.D, Boise State University
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