P. S. Kavitha

epgp books







Learning Objective


To understand the contents of leadership as a process of influence and to maintain a good leadership quality.




Leadership is an essential quality in any organisation or a home. The behaviour of an individual is influenced by the exercise of power and authority but it will not result to a maximum efficiency. It may not have a effect in a long term but motivates and enthusiastic cooperation willingly for the achievement of organisational objectives. It is important ingredient for successful organisation. It is the process of influencing the behaviour of others to work in an enthusiastic way to reach or achieve the goals which determined already by the organisation or a family. Tennenbaum et al refers Leadership is an interpersonal influence exercised in a situation and directed through communication process towards the attainment of a specified goal or goals. It creates emphasis on the communication which influences the person. It does not determine enthusiasm to the receiver but provoking them to act according the leader. Terry has stated leadership in relation to motivation; it is essentially a continuous process of influencing behaviour. A leader breathes life in to the group and motivates it towards goals. Leadership in the business context is one of the means of direction and represents that part of managerial activities by which he guides and influences the behaviour of his subordinates and the group towards accomplishment of goals. It is a great quality which creates, converts and executes everything and anything.


Meaning and Definition of leadership:


Leadership is most important quality of a manager or any individual in any organisation or institution or a family. Various authors have defined the term leadership. They are as follows:


  • According to Mc Farland, Leadership is “the process of interpersonal influence by which the executive or manager influences the activities of others in choosing and maintaining given ends”.
  • According to Lester Leadership means the knack of getting other people to follow you and to do willingly the things you want them to do.
  • According to Ord way Tead, the activity of influencing people to co-operate toward some goal which they come to find desirable.
  • According to Encyclopaedia of social sciences Leadership is the relation between an individual and a group around some common interest and behaving in a manner directed or determined by him.


Leaders are people who do the right thing; managers are the people who do things right was said by the Professor Warren G .Bennis . Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want it done because he wants to do it by Dwight D Eisenhover. Leaders help themselves and others to do the correct things. They set direction, build an inspiring vision and create something new. Leadership is about mapping out where you need to go as to win as a team or an organisation, it is dynamic, exciting and inspiring.


Characteristics of leadership


The leadership has some characteristics. They are as follows


1.      A leader should have followers. It means the leader should be of honest and obedience habitually which should be reciprocated in their followers and accepted by them.

2.      Leadership considers deeply interpersonal influence. It is rooted in the inner feelings and minds that they have grown out of reactions of individual personalities to each other.

3.      A leader must lead continuously; hence it is dynamic and ever evolving process.

4.      It involves directing, guiding and influencing the behavior of followers so the behaviors and activities can be modified in a perfect manner.

5.      A working relationship between leader and follower should be maintained. A leader should also participate actively in all the aspects otherwise it has adverse effect.

6.      The leader must set an ideal to his followers. His behavior must stimulate the followers for hard and honest work.

7.      Leadership involves motivating subordinates to strive willingly for mutual objectives. There should be some common interests between the team and leader.


Skills of leadership


According to Hellreigel there are four kinds of leadership skills. They are as follows


1. Visionary skills: The vision of a leader or goal perceived by a leader impresses the people, they will follow the leader. It includes values, confidence, standards, goals and motivation of a leader.

2.Communication Skills: Communication skills are the utmost characteristics of a leader in an organization or any management. He should clearly specify the goal in proper way of communication.

3.Sensitivity skills: the leaders are powerful and sensitive to the satisfaction of the followers and permit their followers to achieve the goals and vision.

4. Self-awareness skills: Feedback will be obtained by leaders and they will analyse them based on the performance appraisal given by the followers and enhance them accordingly.


Qualities of a Successful Leader


The following innate qualities of leader are determined by George R. Terry. They are as follows:

  • Energy : A leader should have physical energy and mental ability to perform a task
  • Emotional stability: a leader should be confident and have emotional stability such as control of anger, devoid of fear, sense of danger and so on.
  • Knowledge of human relation: a leader should understand the nature of human behavior and act accordingly
  • Empathy: a leader should also view the problem or situation from others point.
  • Objectivity: a leader should not be emotionally involved but analyse the task clear and well defined manner.
  • Personal motivation: he should motivate himself and impose enthusiasm in the followers so that it allows the job done in a smooth way.
  • Communication skills: a leader should be effective communicator and influence the follower to perform the task.
  • Teaching ability: a leader should not only lead but he should learn as well as teach his followers.
  • Technical competence: He should provide working knowledge and guide the followers with proper operations.

     Functions of leader


Following are the functions of a leader

  • Initiation/Initiative: it is the leader who takes initiative to lead all activities. He guides, directs and implements the goal in to action with predetermined targets.
  • Representation: he should be a representative of organization, or a group or a family who has definite goals to be achieved. He should represent the objectives as well as serve others.
  • Interpreting: a leader should give reason to every order. It is delicate task of the business leader. He should give instruction for each and every task in a intellectual manner.
  • Guiding and directing the organization: the function of a leader is to guide and direct the followers in any organization or a family. He should communicate to provide necessary information and direct the people in achieving the goals.
  •  Encouraging team work: motivation and encouragement of team will accomplish the goal in an order.

Types of leaders


Leaders play a variety of role. He should be highly skilled, good at communication and leads the team to achieve goal. Alford and Beatty have classified six categories of leaders. They are as follows

  • Intellectual leaders
  • Democratic leaders
  • Autocratic leaders
  • Persuasive leaders
  • Creative leaders
  • Institutional leaders

Intellectual leaders: these leaders who wins the confidence of the followers by their intellectual knowledge. These people are said to be experts, specialist, a job analyst, creators, directors who guides the people.

Democratic leaders: these leaders will act according to the wish of the followers. He gets opinion of the followers and selects the best way to suit the team. He is loyal to his group and friendly.

Autocratic leaders: these leaders are dominative in nature. He drives his gang through coercion, command and instilling of fear in his followers. They will never leave the authority in any case.

Persuasive leaders: he possesses magnetic personality the team gets involved with this kind of leaders and do whatever the leader says.

Creative leaders: he uses the technique of circular response to encourage ideas flow from the group to him as well as from him to the group.

Institutional leaders: an institutional leader holds his position due to the force of prestige attached to his office. The position he holds enables him to influence his followers.

Leadership behaviour:

Tannenbaum and Schmidt has modified the leadership behaviour and found new behavioural patterns in the leadership. The choice of a leadership depends on many factors. They are as follows


Ø  Forces in the manager: it includes personality, experience, value system, leadership inclinations, and feelings of security in an uncertain situation.

Ø  Forces in the subordinates: it includes subordinates need for independence, readiness to assume responsibility for decision-making, tolerance for ambiguity, understanding and identification with organizational goals.

Ø  Forces in the situation: it includes type of organization, nature of objectives, group effectiveness, complexity of problem itself, pressure time on the situation etc.


Leadership styles:


The behaviour pattern of leaders among the followers was distinguished as leadership styles. It is used to supervise and categorise the subordinates to perform their work. They are as follows


1. Autocratic style 2. Democratic style 3. Laissez- Faire style


Autocratic style:


It is also known as leader centered style or Authoritarian style. It concentrates on leader his own way of performing work and instructs the subordinates to work for the same. The autocratic leader uses authority, has fear of deprivation, punishment and other negative rewards.


Advantages of autocratic style:


·         It provides quick decision making.

·         Subordinates wants to work under one and strict supervision.

·         Confidential in work areas.

·         Strong motivation and satisfaction of the autocratic leader.

·         Less competent subordinates required.

·         Positive outcome at the earliest.


Limitations of autocratic style:


·         Not proper information about the work to be done

·         Jobs assigned to the followers without consulting the job doers.

·         Blind direction from the leaders

·         Efficiency of leader is been shown

·         Subordinates evade responsibility and initiative.


Democratic style


It is also known as participative or group centered style. It allows substantial participation by members of the group in management and decision making process of the leader.


·         Successful style of leadership

·         Encourages co-operative spirit

·         Participates in decision making

·         Reduces employees grievances


Limitations of democratic style


·         Decisions cannot be taken quickly

·         Employees may be exploited

·         Minimum interaction with leaders

·         May not yield positive results

·         Applied as a means of giving up responsibility


Laissez-Faire style


The leader largely depends on the group and its members to establish their goals and make their own decisions. He is passive and assumes the role of just another member in the group.


Advantages of Laissez-Faire style


·         Provides complete freedom to subordinates

·         Full scope for initiative and creativity of the subordinates

·         Free flow of communication between leader and members of group


Limitations of Laissez-Faire style


·         Leaders contribution is ignored

·         Do not get guidance of leader

·         Only suitable for organizational goals


Theories of leadership


According to nature of leadership three theories of leadership is been formulated. They are


    *        Trait theory

*        Situation theory

*        Behavioural theory


Trait theory


It identifies the qualities and characteristics of leaders which are unique. The qualities analysed by trait theory are


1.      Intelligence

2.      Personality

3.      Initiative

4.      Vision and Foresightedness

5.      Maturity

6.      Assuming of responsibility

7.      Adaptability

8.      Human relations attitude


The trait theory of leadership is criticized on the following


1. It is based on research or systematic development of concept.

2.It fails to emphasize the intensity of traits to be agreed by the individual.

3.Leaders must display different leadership characteristics at different times and under different situations.

4.Leadership should be based on personal qualification and traits of the individual.

5.It does not measures the degree of traits

6.Skills are sometimes mistaken for traits


Situation theory


It refers the asserts of the leadership pattern in the particular situation at a particular period. It was discovered by Bavelas and Barett that no individual emerges as leader and all participants have equal access to the information they want to perform. Fred E. Fielder considers some situational variables by research are


  • Leader – Member relations: it may be good or bad
  • Task structure: it may be high or low
  • Power position: it may be strong or weak


Behavioural theories


It tries to explain leadership in terms of what leaders do rather than what they three main models of leadership are based on behavioural theory are given. They are


Michigan studies


It identifies two styles of leadership, the first employee- centered and the other production centered. Employee -centered considers employees as human beings, shows anxiety for the welfare employees. It encourages and involves employees in decision making process. Production centered considers employees as tools in the process of production. It emphasises production targets and technical aspects of the job. It exercises close control and supervision.


Ohio State University studies


It identifies two leadership behaviour namely i) consideration ii) initiating structure. Consideration refers to mutual trust, friendship and warmth between the leader and his staff. Initiating structure implies the degree to which the activities of subordinates are defined and work procedures are established.


Managerial grid


Blake and Mouton developed managerial grid in 1985 for forming managerial types. It identifies concern for production and concern for people. He believed five sets of co-ordinates and establishes managerial styles.

  • Impoverished management: the manager has the lowest concern for both work and people.
  • Authority obedience management: the authority has high concern for maximizing production and extracting obedience from subordinates by the unilateral exercise of power
  • Country club management: it ignores task requirements, production and operational efficiency
  • Organization man management: it is pure compromise in which managers try to achieve adequate overall results by using limited authority and balancing the needs of production with the needs of people.
  • Team management: it is considered to be the most effective management philosophy. It efficiently accomplishes work through team work and participation so that production is maximized.

Effective leader:


An effective leader is one who influences followers in such a manner that high productivity is achieved and high morale, low labour turn over, less accident and better training and developing of followers exists. Leader serves two important functions. They are:


*        Leader guides and motivates his subordinates

*        Subordinates give the leader, information and responses that modify behavior and future plans.


Charismatic leadership:


The term charisma denotes a leadership trait that can help to influence the employees in an organisation to take early and sustained action. Charismatic leaders are dynamic risk takers. They never hesitate to take risk. They show their expertise and self-confidence, express high performance expectations, and use symbols and language, in order to in spite others. Research shows a positive correlation between charismatic leadership and high performance and satisfaction among followers. People working for charismatic leaders are motivated to work extra, as they like their leader, express greater satisfaction.


It may not always be required to achieve high levels of employee performance. It must be most appropriate when the followers’ task has an ideological component. It is very difficult to classify the qualities of leadership in a standardised way. Ordway Tead suggested that a successful leader must possess the following qualities:

  • Physical and mental energy, intelligence and faith
  • A sense of purpose, vision and direction
  • Enthusiasm, communication ability and alignment
  • Friendliness, affection, emotional balance and patience
  • Integrity, persistence and consistency
  • Self- confidence and diligenc
  •  Build up confidence and zeal in the work group
  •  Try to win voluntary cooperation from subordinates
  •  Subordinates should be well informed of their duties and obligations.
  • Initiative and creative ability, drive, empathy, ability to inspire, teach and guide people so as to secure subordinates.

Leadership styles found in Indian organisation


In Indian organisation leadership styles are determined by number of factors and it an be classified in to three. They are

  • Family managed traditional organizations
  •  Private sector organizations
  •  Public sector organizations

Family managed traditional organisations:


In this family managed traditional organisations autocratic style is found. The sons and grandsons of the entrepreneurs are automatically promoted without considering efficiency. This comes by inheritance. Dasgupta says that proprietary character of business and large scale participation of family members in it has made the attitude of the head of the business highly paternalistic.


Private sector organisations:


In this private sector organisation there is an appreciable degree of participation or democratic leadership. This is because multi nationals do not bring only their technology but also work culture, which is more permissive and conducive towards the application of modern approach to management. The degree of participation is more in this organisation.


Public sector organisations:


In this public sector organisation, bureaucratic style is more prevalent owing to the work culture inherited by public sector managers. Initially, it is managed by civil servants who brought a lot of bureaucratic culture with them. Its implication is status differentials, class distinctions and impersonal relationships, which work against participative style.




Leadership means different things to different people around the world, and different things in different situations. It sets direction build an inspiring vision and creates something new. The idea of transformational leadership an effective leader is a person who creates an inspiring vision of the future, motivates and inspires people to engage with that vision, manages delivery of the vision and coaches, builds a team. So that it is more effective at achieving the vision.the word leadership can bring a variety of images a political leader, an explorer, a manager and an executive who helps themselves to do the right thing and it is an art of getting someone involve in the activity to perform them to achieve the target or goal. Various styles of leadership were found and it leads to the uplifting of an organisation or a family. The leader may be autocratic or democratic ot laissez faire but the main aim is to reach the goal with effective leadership. There are several theories which depicts the leadership quality in enlightening the organisation. For any organisation or family a manger may be or not be but effective leadership should play a vital role in fulfilling the goals of the organisation.



you can view video on LEADERSHIP IMPORTANCE




  • L M Prasad (2004), Organisational Behaviour, Sultan Chand & Sons
  • Dr.Radha,(2009), Organisational  Behaviour, Prasanna & co
  • Parikh ,(2010), organisational behaviour, TataMc graw hill education limited
  • Dr. P.C.Tripathi,(2003), human resource development,Sultan chand & sons K. Aswathappa, (2016), Himalaya publishing house


Web links

  • http://www.famu.edu/cesta/main/assets/file/coop_extension/family_consumer_science/famu_frm trifold
  • http://www.hillagric.ac.in/students/pgprogramme/homesci.htm https://books.google.co.in/books
  • https://dese.mo.gov/sites/default/files/FCS_Resource_Mgmnt.pdf
  • https://cms.ctahr.hawaii.edu/fcs/FAMR.aspx