leader_behavior_and_power_Spring_2010 - Okay, let me say...

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Okay, let me say just a few words about leader behavior and power. I use the term leader behavior intentionally because leadership is about behavior. There are no prescribed traits of leadership. We used to think so, as it was the basis of the “Great Man” theory. Of course, to become an effective leader you do not have to be great or a man. Real trait theory went out of favor around 1965, as it became apparent that it was impossible to discern a specific set of traits to correlate with effective leadership. Some leaders are loud and out front and assertive, etc., while others may be quiet and more reserved. This is a dimension of personality, not a predictor of effective leadership. The reason is because leadership is not about traits but about behavior – the behaviors that we consistently show our followers. For example, if I take a survey to determine if I’m more task focused or people focused as a leader, I score 100% task and 0% people. That makes me in reality a task master. Some of you may have already reached that conclusion. LOL Here’s the thing though – when my followers rated my leadership using the same instrument, they said I was 30% task oriented and 70% people oriented. Why the disconnect? Because they can only judge me based upon the behaviors I consistently exhibit to them, not who I really am. That’s good news because, although we can’t change our personalities, we can choose to alter our behaviors to connect and motivate our followers. In fact, it is a leadership responsibility to do so. I don’t have the luxury of saying I’m not a people person, even though it may be true. I may naturally be very autocratic and authoritarian as a leader and this may be appropriate in a crisis situation. But in a normal operating
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This note was uploaded on 06/28/2011 for the course MGT 525 taught by Professor Johnhumhreys during the Spring '11 term at University of Belgrade.

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leader_behavior_and_power_Spring_2010 - Okay, let me say...

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