Discuss, in detail, the role of leadership in influencing the success of an organization.

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Any business without strong leadership becomes like an army without a general. David Ingram of Ingram Entertainment writes,

Leadership acts as the catalyst that makes [the] elements [of production] work together; without leadership, all other business resources lie dormant.

There is no doubt that strong leadership is the key factor to the success of an organization. A strong leader

  • formulates the single direction and mission of an organization. Leaders have the education, skill, experience, and acumen needed for success.
  • models how to do things rather than just dictate.
  • inspires respect, confidence, and unity of purpose from the workers. When workers know the leader is in control and communicates the right vision for success, they are inspired to be productive. 
  • is respectful of his/her employees and makes them feel that they are essential to the success of the organization. Good leaders give employees a voice and reward those who make valuable contributions to the success of the organization. They also protect their employees from any kind of physical, social, or political threats. Good leaders "share the glory" of the success with employees with rewards, social functions, meetings, etc.
  • displays an understanding and knowledge of the organization which inspires confidence in workers.
  • creates a successful culture in the workplace. There are different types of leadership that are effective in different situations; so, the good leader assesses which type to apply that will generate a positive culture in which all employees feel they are valuable. For instance, collaborative leadership would work well in a business in which creative ideas are essential, such as the entertainment or music business. In a business in which employees are highly skilled and well-educated and creative such as the technological market, this, too, might work well. Facilitative leaders use delegation to subordinates, empowering them. Employees are given what they need to excel and provided the initiative to succeed. Nevertheless, in whichever type of leadership is used, the good leader maintains control while being respectful of his employees.
  • knows how to delegate and inspire. Skillful assignment of tasks to subordinates is extremely important to success since no one person can "go it alone." Delegation of authority can inspire people to achieve, and it also develops potential leaders, who will be needed when a business grows. Good leaders also know how to choose "the right person for the job." Perhaps, more than anything else, the delegation of tasks and authority to others generates employee loyalty and job satisfaction.
  • is open to new ideas and change. Sometimes businesses must adapt and a good leader is able to foresee changes that will be needed for the continued success of his/her organization. 
rachellopez | Student

When you are successful, in any situation, you are often helped by a leader or someone who is in charge, above you, and knowledgeable about your goal. Even in non-business related situations, a leader can help you stay focused, organized, positive, and gives you the skills you need to succeed. A leader will inspire you to be successful and overall creates a good environment. So whether it is a leader in a business, a leader in school (a teacher or principal), or a leader in society, they can help you stay on the path to success as well as give you guidance if you are stuck. 

user396107 | Student

An organisation is constituted by its people since it is only an artificial entity. Therefore, the success of an organisation is always very much dependent on a leader who can lead, train, motivate and steer the people in the organisation to collectively achieve the business' goals, objectives, aims and to reach its ultimate purpose. For example, Steve jobs is an exemplar of a leader who has successfully motivated its people who constitute Apple towards achieving its purpose of innovatively designing and creating astounding technology for its users.

malkaam | Student

Human resources are the most important component of any organization, and leaders thus being a significant person who helps in directing a whole group into a certain direction by influencing them. The essence of leadership is follower ship. People follow that person and assign those as leaders who tend to help them fulfill their wants and needs along with satisfaction and achievement of enterprise goals.
Some 2500 years ago Socrates argued that leadership is always situational: a leader has qualities and especially professional or technical knowledge that are specific to the situation,hence not transferable.But he also argued the other side of the coin :a good business leader, he said,would also make a good  military commander for both shared certain generic leadership skills– such as being good at choosing the best people to work with,and being able to identify and work with the right allies.

Leadership is the ability of a manager to induce subordinates to work with confidence and zeal.” (Koontz andO’Donnell)

Leadershipis the lifting of man’svisiontohighersights, theraisingof man’sperformancetohigher standard, the building ofman’s personality beyondits normal limitations.” ( Peter F. Drucker)

Leadership can be defined as the process by which an executive imaginatively directs , guides and influences the work of others in choosing and attaining specified goals by mediating between the individual and the organization in such a manner that both will obtain maximum satisfaction.”(Theo Haiman)

As every pillar of management bears its own significance; hence leadership is that concept that constitutes a significant part that not only helps in maximizing efficiency but also attaining organizational goals.

  • Initiates action: by communicating all the policies and layouts to sub ordinates that actually starts the whole work.Leader is a person who starts the work by communicating the policies and plans to the subordinates from where the work actually starts.
  • Motivation: is a major notion that the leader conveys by providing economical and non-economic benefits to employees to attain goals and objectives. A leader proves to be playing an incentive role in the concern’s working. He motivates the employees with economic and non-economic rewards and thereby gets the work from the subordinates.
  • Providing guidance: refers to directing employees as how to effectively and efficiently complete assigned tasks. A leader has to not only supervise but also play a guiding role for the subordinates. Guidance here means instructing the subordinates the way they have to perform their work effectively and efficiently.
  • Creating confidence: is yet another important activity, as leaders express work efforts to employees, expresses them how to undertake tasks, describing their role, and thus guiding them regarding achievement of goals. It also involves listening keenly to the complaints and regards.
  • Building morale: includes having confidence in employees, and boosting their willingness to cooperate regarding work to best achieve goals effectively. Morale denotes willing co-operation of the employees towards their work and getting them into confidence and winning their trust. A leader can be a morale booster by achieving full co-operation so that they perform with best of their abilities as they work to achieve goals.
  • Builds work environment: For sound and stable growth of enterprise, building a suitable work environment is obligatory, as it helps in getting things done by employees. Thus, the leader maintains a good relationship with his sub ordinates as they feel free in discussing their issues and look forward to them being solved by their leader.
  • Coordination: includes reconciling the personal efforts with organizational goals, which should be the primary motive of a leader. Co-ordination can be achieved through reconciling personal interests with organizational goals. This synchronization can be achieved through proper and effective co-ordination which should be primary motive of a leader.