We Really Need Heroes?
Leadership can be understand by studying the concept of transformational leadership, where the role of a leader is studied at the strategic level. Transformational leadership uses the trait approach where extraordinary as well as exceptional leaders display ideal behavior.
In an organization, a leader is given the title of a hero or a savior. It is assumed that they will have the solution to every problem and they know what should be the course of action in case of an emergency. Leaders invoke in the team members a sense of commitment in order to achieve the organizational goals on time, which is good from the point of the organization. Leaders help in developing the confidence of the team members so that they can achieve more than they could initially. Leaders keep the members in the loop about the present situation. Mangers and leaders are differentiated. In 1985, Bennis & Nanus suggested that leaders find the path whereas management is concerned with following that path. Leadership is doing the right things whereas all the management glory is about getting and doing things the right way; leaders establish a direction while managers plan & provide a budget.
The question is, whether organizations really require the presence of leaders. Nowadays, the conception that is of leadership is offered as a great alternative, as a reaction that is to the most previous style of approach and as a response to the changing environment. And this is called post-heroic leadership.
Factors such as globalization and emerging technology affect all the levels of the organization. Increasing the power of teamwork and importance on knowledge workers will results in employees reacting less to be a great and big transformational leader. Understanding the many characteristics and styles of the leaders along with that of the organization has become a thing of the past. The focus is now on post-hero leadership model. Also, female leadership styles are given importance. Integrity, humility, selection of good people are the preferred leadership qualities in today’s date.
A leader should understand the members and make them identify the opportunity areas and work for the overall benefit of the organization by harnessing the collection that is offered along with the intelligence of any concerned group. Other than decision making, leaders should encourage the development of the workers. Leaders should design the organization in such a way that there is a coordination between the purpose, vision, business structure and the core values. A leader should encourage unique thinking so that the organization can beat the race in the competitive world.
The changes in the leadership role is presented by the table, which is demonstrated below:
It is predicted that in future, there needs to be a balance between masculine and feminine personality traits. Leaders need to possess a combination of personality traits such as will, authenticity, integrity, self-awareness and self-belief and skills such as having a mission and complete dedication and commitment in order to achieve it.
In 1997, Heifetz and Laurie gave six principles of post-heroic leadership. Leadership is all about learning and aligning the members with the vision of the organization. With changes being adapted in the organization, it is no longer only the responsibility of the leader to solve problems. All the employees are encouraged to take active participation and be proactive in the process of problem-solving. Leaders need to build this self-confidence in the employees.
Leaders, as well as the team members have a lot to learn. Leaders have to learn to trust the employees, develop new skills and take a different perspective. On the other hand, employees or team members have to learn to take responsibility.
In 2003, Kets de Vries made a point that post-heroic leadership system will always be prevalent. The changes which are introduced can make people anxious and therefore, heroic leaders can come to the rescue. But, it can prove to be disappointment as the expectation list associated with heroic leaders is endless. In conclusion, it can be said that there is no best way of leadership. Different leadership styles are required during different situations.