Leadership is an essential part of the development of every personality and plays a crucial role in the society. According to statistics, year after year leadership occupies the first position in organizations’ talent priority lists. Some people consider that being a leader is easy, but indeed, the way of a really good leader is a great challenge full of threatening surprises. However, to be a leader one does not have to solve all problems alone. Effective leading means to work in a team and direct it in the right way. Leadership can be described as a process or art of influencing people’s behavior, thoughts and attitudes. This paper aims to discuss leadership as a term that can be observed from different points of view and provide several reasons why leadership is so important.
Firstly, leadership plays an essential role in organizational commitment. Good leaders help to motivate the professional growth of their employees. A simple manager just says «go», but a good leader says «let us go». The task to persuade people that they should grow into better and more developed personalities and employees is the first task of an effective leader. Great leaders should encourage creating new ideas, learning and using new skills in practice, building a strong, well-coordinated team and making sure all employees are unified with one goal and manifest a work power.
Secondly, great leaders have a skill to move business forward in any case, which is equally important to the first reason. They have an ability to anticipate and forecast the future tendencies. Their vision of the future is clear, long-term and they usually have an incredible effective plan of its realization. Great leaders never stop half-way, by shifting gears many times they try to give the employees a sense of purpose in order to work more effectively even in the periods of hardships and rarely have staff losses. Good leadership is also characterized by an understanding when it is an appropriate time to say yes and when it is necessary to say no.
Thirdly, great leaders motivate and inspire employees to be better than they are, both internally and externally. A good leader should be an example of inheritance, passionate for the work and the things he tries to motivate employees for. That is why great leaders cannot be a fake, because it is very easy to spot fakeness and if employees do it, they do not believe a leader and as a result do not work effectively. According to Morrison, “Leadership entails inspiring people to effectively, efficiently and willingly complete any tasks assigned to them, often inadvertently leading to higher levels of productivity and job satisfaction”.
Naturally, a great leader needs to be flexible in their leadership approach and make use of multiple leadership styles.An effective leader should be ready at any time to change style according to the situation and be a professional in all of them. Some may think that leadership is just one constant style of behavior – being a strict, demanding, and frightening disciplinarian. Factually, there are several styles of leadership such as pacesetting, coercive, coaching, authoritative, democratic leadership methods. Among the most popular are coercive, authoritative and democratic approaches to efficient leading.
The coercive leadership style was first described and documented in 2002 by Daniel Goleman. The leaders of such style follow the principle “Do what I say, or find a job somewhere else”. The coercive leadership style is a little bit cruel and sometimes even belittles its followers’ authority and the desire of employees to be led. The best environment for the following style is during the actual emergency or natural disasters like an earthquake or a fire. Under normal conditions, the coercive style has a detrimental effect on the work environment and although useful at times, it is very relevant for leader to feel when it is an appropriate moment to move to another style.
The authoritative leadership style is characterized as a style in which the leader’s task is to dictate and control decisions and tasks which the group makes. The synonyms to this style are control, discipline and organization. The authoritative style can be explained in the phrase “Come with me, I will show you the right way”. The leader of this style should direct team to a common vision and focus it on final goals. The inspiration of an entrepreneurial team spirit is a relevant task of an authoritative leader. The following style works most effective in the situations when it is necessary to point to a new direction for the team because circumstances have changed unexpectedly.
The democratic leadership style, also known as participate style of leadership, means encouraging employees to share their thoughts and ideas, developing conversation in the right way and synthesizing all the information received into one best appropriate decision. The democratic leader does not work and make decisions alone, he relies on his employees and group decision as more important for him than his own. The phrase «Please, share your point of view!» explains the main idea of the democratic leadership style in the best way. The democratic leader always gives his employees the opportunity to participate, exchange information and make decisions. This style is the most efficacious when the group is uncertain of their productivity and needs fresh new ideas.
The above-mentioned styles of leadership prove that being a leader is not so easy and in order to become the best one it is necessary to be able to change one style to another and quickly adapt to the situation. That is why it is essential to remember a number of basic skills that every leader should have and practice them in everyday work. The more you practice, the better not only professional skills become, but also personality. Among the basic qualities of the great leadership are communication and interpersonal skills, flexibility, and problem solving.
Communication and interpersonal skills stay on the top priorities in the list of basic leadership skills. For a good leader, having a high level of communication and good skills in trusting and supporting confidence in employees or followers is crucial. It is important to remember that being good at communicating ideas clearly is not enough, it is essential to be a good listener as well, because while listening to expressed thoughts, ideas and decisions the employees want to make, the person in authority will be able to give a constructive feedback. The leaders with these skills earn trust and respect of their employees and sustain a balanced and dynamic work even in difficult situations.
Flexibility is another important element of a good leadership. Flexible leaders do not stay in the same place and are able to change their plans and beliefs if the situation really requires it. Thanks to flexibility leaders can productively work with a wide range of personalities during the periods of chaos and transitions. Being flexible means always remaining on the alert to adjust to the necessary environment, change the familiar direction, and apply new most suitable tactics of work. Furthermore, the priority of a flexible leader is taking necessary decisions in a few seconds and informing others about them timely.
Problem solving is also a very important basic element. A good leader’ obligation is to have a foresight in order to prevent the problems, obtain root causes of them and keep the workers calm and effective when something unexpected happens. An important aspect in problem solving is to understand that extraordinary things just happen and there are no problems and cases that are not solved and it is possible to find a solution in any case. A great leadership always has a number of diverse decisions in store.
In conclusion, after conducting a research on a great leadership, it is possible to infer that it is a matter of hard work and a rich experience to be a good leader and to obtain the best leadership skills. Moreover, on gaining a great number of abilities, it is necessary to practice them every day and be prepared to change the style of leadership and yourself if the situation requires it. Leadership is an essential and influential part of every team operation and in order to have an effective work and results it is obligatory to first of all make a research on its effectiveness and then act accordingly.