Trait Based Approach To Leadership Essay

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As an important role in organization, leadership is the ability to influence employees to voluntarily pursue organizational goals (Kinicki, Scott-Ladd, Perry, & Williams, 2015, p.430). Trait based approach to leadership is a relatively early theory that provides us a simple idea to identify different traits of effective and successful leadership and exert those traits for future. Thus it is closely tied to the “great man” theory of leadership proposed by Thomas Carlyle (Cherry, 2016). Steve Jobs, the co-founder of Apple. Inc., will be used in this essay to interpret trait based approach to leadership (Kaufman, 2014). On the other hand, transformational leadership first introduced by James V. Downton in 1973 gives people inspiration to achieve …show more content…
Traits are the distinguishing personal characteristics of a leader, such as intelligence, honesty, self-confidence and even appearance (Samson & Daft, 2014, p.612). Trait approaches to leadership is defined as attempt to identify distinctive characteristics that account for the effectiveness of leaders (Kinicki, Scott-Ladd, Perry, & Williams, 2015, p.436). There are lots of desirable traits for a leader, such as positive, passionate, toughness, influencing people and so on. According to Zaccaro, combinations of traits and attributes, integrated in conceptually meaningful ways, are more likely to predict leadership than additive or independent contributions of several single traits (2007). Nonetheless, trait based approach to leadership has weakness as it does not interpret the difference of situation. Those personality variables that many believe to be common to good leaders such as perseverance and mental strength are precursors to effective leadership, but do not always predict it. For example, an effective leader in short term financial planning may not necessarily be an effective leader in long-term financial planning (Patrulescu, 2009,

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