Top Five Leadership Theories & Why Leadership is Important
Why Leadership is important
We care about leadership theories because they explain why some leaders, some teams, some organizations, and companies succeed and why some don’t.
It also provides options for different scenarios, giving you other options for different theories or different ones to apply.
It also helps you set up yourself, your team, and your company for success, enabling you to be more intentional versus reaction.
What is Leadership?
Leadership is a process where individual influences a group of individuals to achieve a common goal.
It’s not a position or title. Sometimes people think they may be a leader just because they have a leader in the title, but it’s really not.
And there are some contemporary theories that compare different motivations of leaders.
Therefore, we may all know of different leaders where we think maybe they have the right motivations or bad motivations.
Historically, we can look back at some of the leaders and have insights on that.
The Great Man Theory
The great man theory really talked about Leadership being defined by characteristics, more innate characteristics, talking more about men with dominant personalities.
Over the years, things have changed, and people continue to study and research leadership
- Is a person born a leader?
- Are they trained or taught to be leaders?
Five Leadership Theories.
The first one is transformational, and it began to be documented in the seventh late 1700 by James MacGregor Burns, who was a political sociologist.
And he documented and did a lot of research on specific types of Leadership.
One is transactional, and the other is transformational
Transaction Leadership is that the leader influences others by what they offer in exchange. Therefore, the transaction.
Transformational; This Is where a leader connects with the followers in such a way that it raises the level of maturity and morality.
You may think of their commitment to a collective good or societal good, helping for all humankind’s greater good.
Transformational Leadership Characteristics
- Leader exudes idealized influence, like the way they carry themselves, and how they talk to other people, their choice of words. Some people call that charisma.
- There’s also inspirational motivation, how they encourage others and inspire others into action.
- They also invoke intellectual stimulation where they have people maybe think more profoundly and maybe change their perspective on things and also
- Individualized concern. Although those leaders are committed to ah collective good, they’re also concerned about the individuals and how they contribute, and what the individual circumstances are. That’s why people feel like transformational leaders are so powerful.
Leader-member exchange is where often we can think of our in-group members and out of group members.
Where the in-group members a line, they think alike, as the leader that resonate the out of group members, Maybe they’re rebellious to the leader’s ideas.
Sometimes it’s also, really, if you think about students in school, they’re the people who are popular or not popular.
This is where a leader mobilizes people to take action on tough challenges.
Sometimes you may have heard of adaptive challenges, and what those are is challenges where the solutions are not readily apparent.
This is talking about strength and attributes or quality that makes an individual successful. Using strengths-based Leadership is trusting in your people’s strengths and competencies.
There’s a lot written by Robert Greenleaf, and he, a servant leader, places others’ needs before their own self-interest.
They’re really all about serving others first and shifting the power in those who are being led.
And the best thing about studying leadership theories where you know some people succeed or some people don’t is the theories give you options to try different scenarios, and your contest and measure.