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Leadership

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Leadership Chapter 6 - Contingency Theory Northouse, 4th edition Overview Contingency Theory Approach Perspective Leadership Styles Situational Variables Research ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Leadership


1
Leadership
Chapter 6 - Contingency Theory
Northouse, 4th edition
2
Overview
  • Contingency Theory Approach Perspective
  • Leadership Styles
  • Situational Variables
  • Research Findings of Leader Style Effectiveness
  • How Does the Contingency Theory Approach Work?

3
Contingency Theory Approach Description
Perspective
  • Contingency theory is a leader-match theory
    (Fiedler Chemers, 1974)
  • Tries to match leaders to appropriate situations
  • Leaders effectiveness depends on how well the
    leaders style fits the context
  • Fiedlers generalizations about which styles of
    leadership are best and worst are based on
    empirically grounded generalizations

4
Contingency Theory Approach Description
Definition
  • Effective leadership is contingent on matching a
    leaders style to the right setting
  • Assessment based on
  • Leadership Styles
  • Situational Variables

5
Leadership Styles
  • Leadership styles are described as
  • Task-motivated (Low LPCs)
  • Leaders are concerned primarily with reaching a
    goal
  • Relationship-motivated (High LPCs)
  • Leaders are concerned with developing close
    interpersonal relationships

Leader Style Measurement Scale (Fiedler)
6
Situational Variables/3 Factors
  • Leader-Member Relations
  • - Refers to the group atmosphere and the degree
    of confidence, loyalty, and attraction of
    followers for leader
  • Group atmosphere
  • Good high degree of subordinate trust, liking,
    positive relationship
  • Poor little or no subordinate trust, friction
    exists, unfriendly

7
Situational Variables/3 Factors
  • Task Structure
  • Concerns the degree to which requirements of a
    task are clear and spelled out
  • High Structure
  • requirements/rules - are clearly stated/known
  • path to accomplish - has few alternatives
  • task completion - can be clearly demonstrated
  • limited number - correct solutions exist

8
Situational Variables/3 Factors
  • Task Structure, contd.
  • Concerns the degree to which requirements of a
    task are clear and spelled out
  • Low Structure
  • requirements/rules - not clearly stated/known
  • path to accomplish - has many alternatives
  • task completion - cannot be clearly
    demonstrated/verified
  • unlimited number - correct solutions exist

9
Situational Variables/3 Factors
  • Position Power
  • Designates the amount of authority a leader has
    to reward or punish followers
  • Strong Power
  • authority to hire or fire, give raises in rank or
    pay
  • Weak Power
  • no authority to hire or fire, give raises in rank
    or pay

10
Situational Variables/3 Factors
  • 3 Factors - determine the favorableness of
    various situations in organizations
  • Situations that are rated
  • Most Favorable -
  • good leader-follower relations,
  • defined tasks (high structure),
  • strong leader position power

11
Situational Variables/3 Factors
  • 3 Factors - determine the favorableness of
    various situations in organizations
  • Situations that are rated
  • Least Favorable -
  • Poor leader-follower relations,
  • unstructured tasks (low structure),
  • Weak leader position power
  • Moderately Favorable
  • Fall in between these extremes

12
Contingency Model
13
Research Findings of Leader Style Effectiveness
Favorableness of Situation

LPC Score
Definition
Low
Very Favorable Very Unfavorable
Situations going smoothly Situations out of
control
Situations with some degree of certainty not
completely in or out of leaders control
High
Moderately Favorable
14
Research Findings of Leader Style Effectiveness
  • Reasons for leader mismatch ineffectiveness
  • LPC style doesnt match a particular situation
    stress and anxiety result
  • Under stress, leader reverts to less mature
    coping style learned in
  • earlier development
  • Leaders less mature coping style results in
    poor decision making and consequently negative
    work outcomes

15
How Does the Contingency Theory Approach Work?
  • Focus of Contingency Theory
  • Strengths
  • Criticisms
  • Application

16
Contingency Theory Approach
Focus
  • By assessing the 3 situational variables, any
    organizational context can be placed in one of
    the 8 categories represented in the Contingency
    Theory Model
  • After the nature of a situation is determined,
    the fit between leaders style and the situation
    can be evaluated

Overall Scope
  • By measuring Leaders LPC score and the 3
    situational variables, it is possible to predict
    whether a leader will be effective in a
    particular setting

17
How Does Contingency Theory Work?
  • Effective in Categories
  • 1, 2, 3, 8

Low LPCs Task-Oriented
High LPCs Relationship-Oriented
Effective in Categories 4, 5, 6, 7
Effective in Categories 1, 2, 3
Middle LPCs
  • If individuals style matches appropriate category
    in the model, leader will be effective
  • If individuals style does not match appropriate
    category in the model, leader will not be
    effective

18
How Does Contingency Theory Work?
How Does it Work?
Example Situation LeaderMember Relation
Good Task Structure High Position Power
High Category 1 Low LPC (Individual who is
task-oriented will be effective)
By measuring Leaders LPC score and the 3
situational variables, it is possible to predict
whether a leader will be effective in a
particular setting
19
Strengths
  • Empirical support. Contingency theory has been
    tested by many researchers and found to be a
    valid and reliable approach to explaining how to
    achieve effective leadership.
  • Broadened understanding. Contingency theory has
    broadened the scope of leadership understanding
    from a focus on a single, best type of leadership
    (e.g., trait approach) to emphasizing the
    importance of a leaders style and the demands of
    different situations.
  • Predictive. Because Contingency theory is
    predictive, it provides relevant information
    regarding the type of leadership that is most
    likely to be effective in particular contexts.

20
Strengths
  • Not an all-or-nothing approach. Contingency
    theory contends that leaders should not expect to
    be effective in every situation thus companies
    should strive to place leaders in optimal
    situations according to their leadership style.
  • Leadership profiles. Contingency theory supplies
    data on leadership styles that could be useful to
    organizations in developing leadership profiles
    for human resource planning.

21
Criticisms
  • Fails to fully explain why leaders with
    particular leadership styles are more effective
    in some situations than others
  • Criticism of LPC scale validity as it does not
    correlate well with other standard leadership
    measures
  • Cumbersome to use in real-world settings
  • Fails to adequately explain what should be done
    about a leader/situation mismatch in the workplace

22
Application
  • Useful in answering a multitude of questions
    about the leadership of individuals in various
    types of organizations
  • Helpful tool to assist upper management in making
    changes to lower level positions to ensure a good
    fit between an existing manager and a certain
    work context
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