U.S. nonsectarian agency founded by Martin Luther King, Jr., and others in 1957 to assist local organizations working for equal rights for African Americans. Operating primarily in the South, it conducted leadership-training programs, citizen-education projects, and voter-registration drives. It played a major role in the historic March on Washington in 1963 and in the campaigns to urge passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. After King's assassination in 1968, Ralph Abernathy became president. In the early 1970s the SCLC was weakened by several schisms, including the departure of Jesse Jackson, who founded Operation PUSH in Chicago.
Learn more about Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) with a free trial on Britannica.com.
A leader is simply someone who has followers.
The charismatic leader (Weber, 1905) leads by infusing energy and eagerness into their team members. This type of leader has to be committed to the organization for the long run. If the success of the division or project is attributed to the leader and not the team, charismatic leaders may become a risk for the company by deciding to resign for advanced opportunities. It takes the company time and hard work to gain the employees' confidence back with other type of leadership after they have committed themselves to the magnetism of a charismatic leader.
The autocratic leader (Lewin, Lippitt, & White, 1939) is given the power to make decisions alone, having total authority. This leadership style is good for employees that need close supervision to perform certain tasks. Creative employees and team players resent this type of leadership, since they are unable to enhance processes or decision making, resulting in job dissatisfaction.
The democratic leader (Lewin, Lippitt, & White, 1939) listens to the team's ideas and studies them, but will make the final decision. Team players contribute to the final decision thus increasing employee satisfaction and ownership, feeling their input was considered when the final decision was taken. When changes arises, this type of leadership helps the team assimilate the changes better and more rapidly than other styles, knowing they were consulted and contributed to the decision making process, minimizing resistance and intolerance. A shortcoming of this leadership style is that it has difficulty when decisions are needed in a short period of time or at the moment.
The laissez-faire ("let do") leader (Lewin, Lippitt, & White, 1939) gives no continuous feedback or supervision because the employees are highly experienced and need little supervision to obtain the expected outcome. On the other hand, this type of style is also associated with leaders that don’t lead at all, failing in supervising team members, resulting in lack of control and higher costs, bad service or failure to meet deadlines.
The people-oriented leader (Fiedler, 1967) is the one who, in order to comply with effectiveness and efficiency, supports, trains and develops his personnel, increasing job satisfaction and genuine interest to do a good job.
The task-oriented leader (Fiedler, 1967) focuses on the job, and concentrates on the specific tasks assigned to each employee to reach goal accomplishment. This leadership style suffers the same motivation issues as autocratic leadership, showing no involvement in the teams needs. It requires close supervision and control to achieve expected results. Another name for this is deal maker (Rowley & Roevens, 1999) and is linked to a first phase in managing Change, enhance, according to the Organize with Chaos approach.
The servant leader (Greenleaf, 1977) facilitates goal accomplishment by giving its team members what they need in order to be productive. This leader is an instrument employees use to reach the goal rather than a commanding voice that moves to change. This leadership style, in a manner similar to democratic leadership, tends to achieve the results in a slower time frame than other styles, although employee engagement is higher.
The transaction leader (Burns, 1978) is given power to perform certain tasks and reward or punish for the team’s performance. It gives the opportunity to the manager to lead the group and the group agrees to follow his lead to accomplish a predetermined goal in exchange for something else. Power is given to the leader to evaluate, correct and train subordinates when productivity is not up to the desired level and reward effectiveness when expected outcome is reached.
The transformation leader (Burns, 1978) motivates its team to be effective and efficient. Communication is the base for goal achievement focusing the group on the final desired outcome or goal attainment. This leader is highly visible and uses chain of command to get the job done. Transformational leaders focus on the big picture, needing to be surrounded by people who take care of the details. The leader is always looking for ideas that move the organization to reach the company’s vision.
The environment leader ( Carmazzi, 2005) is the one who nurtures group or organizational environment to affect the emotional and psychological perception of an individual’s place in that group or organization. An understanding and application of group psychology and dynamics is essential for this style to be effective. The leader uses organizational culture to inspire individuals and develop leaders at all levels. This leadership style relies on creating an education matrix where groups interactively learn the fundamental psychology of group dynamics and culture from each other. The leader uses this psychology, and complementary language, to influence direction through the members of the inspired group to do what is required for the benefit of all.
Traditional closed groups rely on bloodlines or seniority to select leaders and/or leadership candidates: monarchies, tribal chiefdoms, oligarchies and aristocratic societies rely on (and often define their institutions by) such methods.
Competence or perceived competence provides a possible basis for selecting leadership elites from a broader pool of potential talent. Political lobbying may prove necessary in electoral systems, but immediately demonstrated skill and character may secure leadership in smaller groups such as gangs.
Many organizations and groups aim to identify, grow, foster and promote what they see as leadership potential or ability - especially among younger members of society. See for example the Scouting movement. For a specific environment, see leadership development.
In the course of the 18th and 20th centuries, several political operators took non-traditional paths to become dominant in their societies. They or their systems often expressed a belief in strong individual leadership, but existing titles and labels ("King", "Emperor", "President" and so on) often seemed inappropriate, insufficient or downright inaccurate in some circumstances. The formal or informal titles or descriptions they or their flunkies employe express and foster a general veneration for leadership of the inspired and autocratic variety. The definite article when used as part of the title (in languages which use definite articles) emphasizes the existence of a sole "true" leader.
Various symbolic attributes — often varying according to the cultural milieu — mark out authority-figures and help make them seem special and revered or feared.
Intertwined with such categories, and overlapping them, we find for example religious leaders potentially with their own internal hierarchies,work-place leaders=corporate officer|executives,senior management-senior/upper managers; middle management|middle managers, staff-managers, line-managers,team leader, supervisors and leaders of voluntary associations.
Some anthropological ideas envisage a widespread but by no means universal pattern of progression in the organization of society in ever-larger groups,with the needs and practices of leadership changing accordingly. Thus simple dispute resolution may become legalistic dispensation of justice before developing into proactive legislature/legislative activity. Some leadership careers parallel this sort of progression: today's school-board chairperson may become tomorrow's city councilor, then take in say a mayor dom before graduating to nation-wide politics. Compare the "cursus honorum" in ancient Rome.
In prehistoric times, man was preoccupied with his personal security, maintenance, protection, and survival. Now man spends a major portion of his waking hours working for organizations. His need to identify with a community that provides security, protection, maintenance, and a feeling of belonging continues unchanged from prehistoric times. This need is met by the informal organization and its emergent, or unofficial, leaders.
Leaders emerge from within the structure of the informal organization. Their personal qualities, the demands of the situation, or a combination of these and other factors attract followers who accept their leadership within one or several overlay structures. Instead of the authority of position held by an appointed head or chief, the emergent leader wields influence or power. Influence is the ability of a person to gain co-operation from others by means of persuasion or control over rewards. Power is a stronger form of influence because it reflects a person's ability to enforce action through the control of a means of punishment.
Thus many leadership systems promote different rules for different levels of leadership. Hereditary autocrats meet in the United Nations on equal representative terms with elected governments in a collegial leadership. Or individual local democracies may assign some of their powers to temporary dictators in emergencies, as in ancient Rome. Hierarchies intermingle with equality of opportunity at different levels.
In modern dynamic environments formal bureaucratic organizations have started to become less common because of their inability to deal with fast-changing circumstances. Most modern business organizations (and some government departments) encourage what they see as "leadership skills" and reward identified potential leaders with promotions.
The foundational support structure for leadership will be the organizations Corporate culture, this is where the structure of the environment either supports or degrades a leaders potential. A leaders ability to influence Organizational culture will be directly related to the results they achieve.
In a potential down-side to this sort of development, a big-picture grand-vision leader may foster another sort of hierarchy: a fetish of leadership amongst subordinate sub-leaders, encouraged to seize resources for their own sub-empires and to apply to the supreme leader only for ultimate arbitration.
Some leaders build coalitions and alliances: political parties abound with this type of leader. Still others depend on rapport with the masses: they labor on the shop-floor or stand in the front-line of battle, leading by example.
The simplest way to measure the effectiveness of leadership involves evaluating the size of the following that the leader can muster. By this standard, Adolf Hitler became a very effective leader for a period — even if through delusional promises and coercive techniques. However, this approach may measure power rather than leadership. To measure leadership more specifically, one may assess the extent of influence on the followers, that is, the amount of leading. Within an organizational context this means financially valuing productivity. Effective leaders generate higher productivity, lower costs, and more opportunities than ineffective leaders. Effective leaders create results, attain goal, realize vision, and other objectives more quickly and at a higher level of quality than ineffective leaders.
James MacGregor Burns introduced a normative element: an effective Burnsian leader will unite followers in a shared vision that will improve an organization and society at large. Burns calls leadership that delivers "true" value, integrity, and trust transformational leadership. He distinguishes such leadership from "mere" transactional leadership that builds power by doing whatever will get more followers. But problems arise in quantifying the transformational quality of leadership - evaluation of that quality seems more difficult to quantify than merely counting the followers that the straw man of transactional leadership James MacGregor Burns has set as a primary standard for effectiveness. Thus transformational leadership requires an evaluation of quality, independent of the market demand that exhibits in the number of followers.
Assessments, , of transformational and transactional leadership commonly make use of the Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ), developed by Bass and Avolio in 1990 and revised in 1995. It measures five dimensions of transformational leadership:
The three dimensions of transactional leadership measured by the MLQ cover:
The functional leadership model conceives leadership as a set of behaviors that helps a group perform a task, reach their goal, or perform their function. In this model, effective leaders encourage functional behaviors and discourage dysfunctional ones.
In the path-goal model of leadership, developed jointly by Martin Evans and Robert House and based on the "Expectancy Theory of Motivation", a leader has the function of clearing the path toward the goal(s) of the group, by meeting the needs of subordinates.
Some commentators use the metaphor of an orchestral conductor to describe the quality of the leadership process. An effective leader resembles an orchestra conductor in some ways. He/she has to somehow get a group of potentially diverse and talented people - many of whom have strong personality - to work together toward a common output. Will the conductor harness and blend all the gifts his or her players possess? Will the players accept the degree of creative expression they have? Will the audience enjoy the sound they make? The conductor may have a clear determining influence on all of these questions.
In 2008 Burman and Evans published a 'charter' for leaders:
The approach of listing leadership qualities, often termed "trait theory of leadership", assumes certain traits or characteristics will tend to lead to effective leadership. Although trait theory has an intuitive appeal, difficulties may arise in proving its tenets, and opponents frequently challenge this approach. The "strongest" versions of trait theory see these "leadership characteristics" as innate, and accordingly labels some people as "born leaders" due to their psychological makeup. On this reading of the theory, leadership development involves identifying and measuring leadership qualities, screening potential leaders from non-leaders, then training those with potential.
David McClelland saw leadership skills, not so much as a set of traits, but as a pattern of motives. He claimed that successful leaders will tend to have a high need for power, a low need for affiliation, and a high level of what he called activity inhibition (one might call it self-control).
Situational leadership theory offers an alternative approach. It proceeds from the assumption that different situations call for different characteristics. According to this group of theories, no single optimal psychographic profile of a leader exists. The situational leadership model of Hersey and Blanchard, for example, suggest four leadership-styles and four levels of follower-development. For effectiveness, the model posits that the leadership-style must match the appropriate level of followership-development. In this model, leadership behavior becomes a function not only of the characteristics of the leader, but of the characteristics of followers as well. Other situational leadership models introduce a variety of situational variables. These determinants include:
The contingency model of Vroom and Yetton uses other situational variables, including:
However one determines leadership behavior, one can categorize it into various leadership styles. Many ways of doing this exist. For example, the Managerial Grid Model, a behavioral leadership-model, suggests five different leadership styles, based on leaders' strength of concern for people and their concern for goal achievement.
Kurt Lewin, Ronald Lipitt, and R. K. White identified three leadership styles: authoritarian, democratic, and laissez-faire, based on the amount of influence and power exercised by the leader.
The Fiedler contingency model bases the leader’s effectiveness on what Fred Fiedler called situational contingency. This results from the interaction of leadership style and situational favorableness (later called "situational control").
Even though these ten leadership behaviors and approaches do not really equate to specific styles, evidence has started to accumulate that a leader’s style can make a difference. Style becomes the key to the formulation and implementation of strategy and plays an important role in work-group members’ activity and in team citizenship. Little doubt exists that the way (style) in which leaders influence work-group members can make a difference in their own and their people’s performance.
(Adopted from: Robert House and Philip M. Podsakoff, "Leadership Effectiveness: Past Perspectives and Future Directions for Research" in Greenberg, Jerald ed.),pp. 45-82 Organizational Behavior: The State of the Science, Hillsdale, NJ, England: Erlbaum Associates, Inc, 1994. x, 312 pp. .)
For leadership to occur, according to this theory, some people "leaders" must communicate the vision to others "followers" in such a way that the followers adopt the vision as their own. Leaders must not just see the vision themselves, they must have the ability to get others to see it also. Numerous techniques aid in this process, including: narratives, metaphors, symbolic actions, leading by example,incentives, and penalty|penalties.
Stacey (1992) has suggested that the emphasis on vision puts an unrealistic burden on the leader. Such emphasis appears to perpetuate the myth that an organization must depend on a single, uncommonly talented individual to decide what to do. Stacey claims that this fosters a culture of dependency and conformity in which followers take no pro-active incentives and do not think independently.
Kanungo's charismatic leadership model describes the role of the vision in three stages that are continuously ongoing, overlapping one another. Assessing the status quo, formulation and articulation of the vision, and implementation of the vision.
Any of the bipolar labels traditionally ascribed to management style could also apply to leadership style. Hersey and Blanchard use this approach: they claim that management merely consists of leadership applied to business situations; or in other words: management forms a sub-set of the broader process of leadership. They put it this way: "Leadership occurs any time one attempts to influence the behavior of an individual or group, regardless of the reason.Management is a kind of leadership in which the achievement of organizational goals is paramount."
However, a clear distinction between management and leadership may nevertheless prove useful. This would allow for a reciprocal relationship between leadership and management, implying that an effective manager should possess leadership skills, and an effective leader should demonstrate management skills. One clear distinction could provide the following definition:
Abraham Zaleznik (1977),for example, delineated differences between leadership and management. He saw leaders as inspiring visionaries, concerned about substance; while managers he views as planners who have concerns with process.Warren Bennis (1989) further explicated a dichotomy between managers and leaders. He drew twelve distinctions between the two groups:
Paul Birch (1999) also sees a distinction between leadership and management. He observed that, as a broad generalization, managers concerned themselves with tasks while leaders concerned themselves with people. Birch does not suggest that leaders do not focus on "the task." Indeed, the things that characterise a great leader include the fact that they achieve. Effective leaders create and sustain competitive advantage through the attainment of cost leadership, revenue leadership, time leadership, and market value leadership. Managers typically follow and realize a leader's vision. The difference lies in the leader realising that the achievement of the task comes about through the goodwill and support of others (influence), while the manager may not.
This goodwill and support originates in the leader seeing people as people, not as another resource for deployment in support of "the task". The manager often has the role of organizing resources to get something done. People form one of these resources, and many of the worst managers treat people as just another interchangeable item. A leader has the role of causing others to follow a path he/she has laid out or a vision he/she has articulated in order to achieve a task. Often, people see the task as subordinate to the vision. For instance, an organization might have the overall task of generating profit, but a good leader may see profit as a by-product that flows from whatever aspect of their vision differentiates their company from the competition.
Leadership does not only manifest itself as purely a business phenomenon. Many people can think of an inspiring leader they have encountered who has nothing whatever to do with business: a politician, an officer in the armed forces, a Scout or Guide leader, a teacher, etc. Similarly, management does not occur only as a purely business phenomenon. Again, we can think of examples of people that we have met who fill the management niche in non-business organisationsNon-business organizations should find it easier to articulate a non-money-driven inspiring vision that will support true leadership. However, often this does not occur.
Differences in the mix of leadership and management can define various management styles. Some management styles tend to de-emphasize leadership. Included in this group one could include participatory management, democratic management, and collaborative management styles. Other management styles, such as authoritarian management, micro-management, and top-down management, depend more on a leader to provide direction. Note, however, that just because an organisation has no single leader giving it direction, does not mean it necessarily has weak leadership. In many cases group leadership (multiple leaders) can prove effective. Having a single leader (as in dictatorship) allows for quick and decisive decision-making when needed as well as when not needed. Group decision-making sometimes earns the derisive label "committee-itis" because of the longer times required to make decisions, but group leadership can bring more expertise, experience, and perspectives through a democratic process.
Patricia Pitcher (1994) has challenged the bifurcation into leaders and managers. She used a factor analysis (in marketing)factor analysis technique on data collected over 8 years, and concluded that three types of leaders exist, each with very different psychological profiles:'Artists' imaginative, inspiring, visionary, entrepreneurial, intuitive, daring, and emotional Craftsmen: well-balanced, steady, reasonable, sensible, predictable, and trustworthy Technocrats: cerebral, detail-oriented, fastidious, uncompromising, and hard-headed She speculates that no one profile offers a preferred leadership style. She claims that if we want to build, we should find an "artist leader" if we want to solidify our position, we should find a "craftsman leader" and if we have an ugly job that needs to get done like downsizing.we should find a "technocratic leader".Pitcher also observed that a balanced leader exhibiting all three sets of traits occurs extremely rarely: she found none in her study.
Bruce Lynn postulates a differentiation between 'Leadership' and ‘Management’ based on perspectives to risk. Specifically,"A Leader optimises upside opportunity; a Manager minimises downside risk." He argues that successful executives need to apply both disciplines in a balance appropriate to the enterprise and its context. Leadership without Management yields steps forward, but as many if not more steps backwards. Management without Leadership avoids any step backwards, but doesn’t move forward.
A common example of group leadership involves cross-functional teams. A team of people with diverse skills and from all parts of an organization assembles to lead a project. A team structure can involve sharing power equally on all issues, but more commonly uses rotating leadership. The team member(s) best able to handle any given phase of the project become(s) the temporary leader(s). According to Ogbonnia (2007), "effective leadership is the ability to successfully integrate and maximize available resources within the internal and external environment for the attainment of organizational or societal goals". Ogbonnia defines an effective leader "as an individual with the capacity to consistently succeed in a given condition and be recognized as meeting the expectations of an organization or society."
Rather than an autocratic or charismatic conductor deciding the overall conception of a work and then dictating how each individual is to perform the individual tasks, the Orpheus team generally selects a different "core group" for each piece of music. The core group provides leadership in working out the details of the piece, and presents their ideas to the whole team. Members of the whole team then participate in refining the final conception, rehearsal, and product, including checking from various places in the auditorium how the sound balances and verifying the quality of the final recording.
At times the entire Orpheus team may follow a single leader, but whom the team follows rotates from task to task, depending on the capabilities of its members.
The orchestra has developed seminars and training sessions for adapting the Orpheus Process to business.
Aristocratic thinkers have postulated that leadership depends on one's blue blood or genes: monarchy takes an extreme view of the same idea, and may prop up its assertions against the claims of mere aristocrats by invoking divine sanction: see the divine right of kings. Contrariwise, more democratically-inclined theorists have pointed to examples of meritocratic leaders, such as the Napoleonic marshals profiting from careers open to talent.
In the autocratic/paternalistic strain of thought, traditionalists recall the role of leadership of the Roman pater familias. Feminist thinking, on the other hand, may damn such models as patriarchal and posit against them emotionally-attuned, responsive, and consensual empathetic guidance and matriarchies.
Comparable to the Roman tradition, the views of Confucianism on "right living" relate very much to the ideal of the (male) scholar-leader and his benevolent rule, buttressed by a tradition of filial piety.
In On Heroes, Hero-Worship, and the Heroic in History, Thomas Carlyle demonstrated the concept of leadership associated with a position of authority. In praising Oliver Cromwell's use of power to bring King Charles I to trial and eventual beheading, he wrote the following: "Let us remark, meanwhile, how indispensable everywhere a King is, in all movements of men. It is strikingly shown, in this very War, what becomes of men when they cannot find a Chief Man, and their enemies can."
In the 19th century, the elaboration of anarchist thought called the whole concept of leadership into question. (Note that the Oxford English Dictionary traces the word "leadership" in English only as far back as the 19th century.) One response to this denial of élitism came with Leninism, which demanded an élite group of disciplined cadres to act as the vanguard of a socialist revolution, bringing into existence the dictatorship of the proletariat.
Other historical views of leadership have addressed the seeming contrasts between secular and religious leadership. The doctrines of Caesaro-papism have recurred and had their detractors over several centuries. Christian thinking on leadership has often emphasized stewardship of divinely-provided resources - human and material - and their deployment in accordance with a Divine plan. Compare servant leadership.
The great traits that a leader must have, have been debated over time, and most people agree that these are the five key traits. You must have a vision. We've all heard the saying "You must stand for something, or you'll fall for everything." But what does that really mean? Standing firm when it comes to your company's policies and procedures is all well and good, but it doesn't speak to having a vision. As a leader, you have to learn to communicate your vision or the vision of your company to the people you want to follow you. You must have passion, you have to show your team that you want to accomplish the goal as badly as they do, your passion will drive them. You must learn to be a great decision maker. Sometimes, leaders must face times of pressure where they are forced to make quick decisions, a great leader must have this skill. You must be a team builder. To become a great leader, you must first make your team great, you must have the power to give your team responsibilities, and trust them too, you must slowly make them greater and greater. You must have character. Without character, all the other "keys" are for naught. That's because your innate character strengths and limitations play a critical role in your leadership style. The real question is, are you aware of just what role they play? All great leaders have taken steps to learn about their individual personality and what part it plays in their leadership style.