• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

'Leaders are born not made. To what extent is this saying justified by current research evidence?'

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

'Leaders are born not made. To what extent is this saying justified by current research evidence?' The phenomenon of leadership is one of the most extensively researched management processes, and inevitably effective leadership plays a fundamental role in the success of any organisation. The fact that no single style of leadership has been found to be universally effective, suggests not every leader exhibits the same type of leadership behaviour. It is possible that this is a result of leaders' personal choices, or due to innate genetic factors, giving rise to the view that 'leaders are born not made'. Being a leader and leadership itself are however, two very different concepts. Fielder (1995) defined a leader as a person who is "appointed, elected, or informally chosen to direct and co-ordinate the work of others in a group". In contrast, leadership is more of a process, and can be considered to be a combination of personal qualities, behaviours and styles adapted by the leader. It is therefore possible that not all leaders will possess effective leadership skills and attributes. With reference to the statement leaders are 'born not made', it may be that people are born with certain predispositions i.e. ...read more.

Middle

This development enables leaders to adapt their leadership attributes to context-dependant situations i.e. task function or social-emotional function. This interaction suggests that transformational leadership builds on transaction exchanges (e.g., "augmentation hypothesis" Avolio & Bass, 1995), and may therefore not be mutually exclusive (Bryman, 1992). Bass (1985) developed the Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ) to assess the different leadership styles, and to investigate the relationship between these styles, work effectiveness and satisfaction. He integrated the transformational and transactional approaches, by recognising that both styles may be linked to the achievement of desired goals and objectives. Within this reasoning, any given manager may be both transactional and transformational. Questions in the MLQ assess the four components of transformational leadership, two components of transactional leadership and laissez-faire leadership. Research findings have suggested a high intercorrelation between transformational factors and contingent reward. Den Hartog et al (1997) found correlations of 0.61 to 0.75 between components of transformational leadership, in ratings of 700 leaders from eight Dutch organisations. Similarly Geyer and Steyrer (1998) also report very high correlations (0.69 to 0.75) in their sample of over 1,400 employees in 20 Austrian banks. ...read more.

Conclusion

Research into transformational and transactional leadership, suggests that effective leadership may be achieved through a combination of innate and learnt, personality and behavioural characteristics. It may be that individuals are 'born' with genetic predispositions, which need to be shaped by experience to develop effective leadership qualities. Personality or intelligence alone may not be enough, as leaders need flexibility for context-dependent leadership styles as shown in Fielder's Contingency Model (1967). It may be that personality and intelligence are genetically based, but there is potential for them to be influenced by environment, and for individuals to become flexible in their behaviour without compromising their personality and values. This may enable leaders to be more adaptable, and adopt a variety of context-dependent leadership styles i.e. person-orientated (transformational), task-orientated (transactional). In hindsight, it is therefore true that to an extent, leaders are both 'born' and 'made'. Leaders may be born with genetic personality and intellectual predispositions, which give them the potential to become effective leaders. However, it appears to be the development of these predispositions through life experiences and influences, which enables them to achieve effective leadership qualities. It is therefore an interrelation of both genetics and learning, which builds a multi-dimensional leadership approach (Bass, 1998; Yukl, 1998), which creates great leaders. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Management Studies section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree Management Studies essays

  1. ARE LEADERS BORN OR MADE

    Findings over recent years supported that at least half our traits are inherited. In other words, some people are born with the characteristics of a leader while some people are not. People born with these characteristics made them outstanding among other people and followers usually want their leader contains these traits.

  2. ARE LEADERS BORN OR MADE?

    The Trump family would be a great example for this theory since Fred Trump, a wealthy real estate developer, had a son, Donald Trump who is now a billionaire. These set might get passed on further to both of Donald Trumps son and daughter who are following in their fathers footsteps.

  1. Leaders are made not born. Discuss this statement with references to theories of leadership. ...

    Leaders following this style are typically authoritarian and lead by intimidation (Berg and Magnus, PG). The humanist theory of leadership was developed by Elton Mayo in the late 1920s. A severe contrast to the scientific theory of leadership, the humanist theory emphasizes the people who are actually doing the work, rather than the work itself.

  2. Leadership Theories - this review seeks to determine which theoretical perspectives, theories and schools ...

    Limitations of this study, personal learning and future research are also included. Chapter VII concludes this study by summarizing main findings and contributions. CHAPTER II: POSITIONING THE FIELD OF INQUIRY "...our understanding of leadership did not arrive fully complete and mature at our doorstep, nor should we reasonably expect this."

  1. General Management - organisation, leadership and theories.

    I said I wanted to see you now."23 Managers without human skills are insensitive and arrogant. They often make other people feel stupid and resentful. In recent years, the awareness of human skills has increased. Books such as In Search of Excellence and A Passion for Excellence stress the need

  2. "Learders are born, not made", do you agree or disagree with this statement. Explain.

    Clearly, Galton was on the wrong path; but there may be some truth to the idea that leadership skills and other personality traits are inheritable.Twin studies have proven that we are born with certain personality characteristics. This theory believes that leaders are born that way, they are naturally braver, more

  1. All leaders differ in the way they implement their leadership. Two leaders selected for ...

    He has led over transformational changes in Cuba to social conditions such as literacy and health-care. Castro was able to influence his followers to accomplish more than what was expected of them, as he held great personal power, which included: expert power, referent power, and prestige power.

  2. Effect of a Changing Health Care Environment on Social Work Leaders: Obstacles and Opportunities ...

    Dimond and Markowitz (1995) added that in reality many people are capable of managing, but few people actually lead. In today's environment, leadership is needed more than ever to preserve as well as promote programs through these turbulent times of change.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work