Investigating Leadership Essay

3551 words - 14 pages

Investigating Leadership

Introduction

After conducting some research on leadership, many questions have been brought to my attention. Some questions include the following: What is a leader? Are leaders made or born? What is the difference between leadership and management? What are the theories concerning leadership? Answers to these questions, and many others, should become clear enough at the end of this research.

Schermerhorn defines leadership as 'a special case of interpersonal influence that gets an individual or group to do what the leader wants done' (287). On the other hand, Kathryn Bartol defines leadership as ?the process of influencing others to achieve organizational goals? (415). After analyzing the two quotes, I ask myself ?What is leadership?? I believe that leadership is the process of directing and guiding the behaviors of others in the appropriate directions to accomplish the goals and missions previously set. Schermerhorn and Bartol highlight the same issue, however although they are extremely similar, they address it in different words. A leader is a person who is ambitious, determined, focused, and motivated to achieve the organizational goals. The leader must have a clear understanding of individual differences in order to effectively utilize and appreciate the different contributions of different individuals. In addition, a leader must also be aware of the importance of communication between the leader and the followers; and of the communication amongst the followers themselves. Now however we may start to address the role management, and what role does it play in this enigmatic equation? Which in turn causes the rise of the question, what is the difference between leadership and management?

Leadership vs. Management

Kathryn Bartol describes management as ?the process of achieving organizational goals by engaging in the four major functions of planning, organizing, leading, and controlling? (5). On the other hand, the author describes leading as the process of
?Influencing others to engage in the work behaviors necessary to reach organizational goals? (7). Therefore, by analyzing Bartol?s definition of management, it becomes clear that leading is a management function. Even though there is an interrelation between leadership and management, leaders and managers are not the same. Leaders consider their goals personal, and they motivate others by creating ambitious goals. Job titles and organizational standings are not an issue for leaders, for they search for self-achievement and self-satisfaction through the accomplishment of goals and the sense of power (Georgiades 97). On the other hand, managers do not consider their goals as personal; it is more of a monetary based goal in which they can govern others, and achieve the end result of uniting the members subordinate to them to function in a productive manner. They organize the subordinates and resources in order to achieve the...

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