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Larsson and Vinberg (2010) explained that leadership behaviour plays a crucial role for successful organisations and the balance between the two behaviours, task- and relations- orientation, will lead to different desired outcomes in different situations. Leaders may use more than one leadership styles and combine the behaviours based on the situation(Oshagbemi and Ocholi, 2013). Alan combines both relations and task behaviour approaches to match the situation, influence the employees’ performance and satisfaction of the work environment to have optimal effectiveness.
Alan demonstrates relations-oriented behaviour as he trusts his team to be efficient and independent in performing their respective roles with little to no supervision. He presents himself as a friendly and approachable boss giving help when needed. Alan includes his employees in making decisions to improve the business. As such, creating an environment of emotional support, warmth, fairness, friendliness and trust which has earned him his employees’ trust and respect.
Despite being dominantly relationship-oriented, Alan also displays task-oriented behaviour. He takes care of customers when they drop off their cars, plans work schedule and assigns work to the employees. Also, he maintains performance standards whereby there are standard procedures and times to perform each type of repair task.
Alan exhibits participative leadership style where he enjoys working alongside his workers. He is usually not directive in telling them what to do. Instead, gives suggestions in what could be done or how he would have handled the issues. He does not need to use his power and authority to get work done as he is friendly and approachable. Alan’s style of decision-making is Group II as he encourages his team to provide opinions in decision making.
However, Alan displays leadership styles with different employees. Hersey and Blanchard’s Situational Leadership Theory centers on the leader’s behavior and followers’ willingness and assess it to evaluate leader effectiveness(Cairns,1996). With Gil and Hans, Alan uses the delegating style where he entrusts them with largely high-precision and specialists tasks which are done quickly and with little or no errors. Bart and Herbie each specialises in different areas, thus would be more insecure in areas they are not specialising in. As such, Alan would use the participating approach, which involves less directive but more collaborative, when dealing with them. Kirk, who is resigned to this job and is usually given lower-level skills tasks, Alan would need to be directive and provide more guidance employing the telling approach. With LaMont and Joanie, who perform lower-level skills tasks under Alan’s advice, does their job well and is improving. Thus, Alan employs the selling approach with them, where he is directive, but shows concern for them.
In conclusion, despite Alan’s predominant style being participative, Alan demonstrates an array of styles which differ when handling different people. T.S. and D.R. (2015) said that leadership is a social influence process where leaders seeks voluntary participation of employees to attain organizational goals.
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