What Makes A Leader And Their Character? Essay

1095 Words Sep 29th, 2016 5 Pages
The term leadership is usually a word that ignites excitement in people. Leaders are often thought of as strong individuals capable of inspiring big change and what many aspire to be. They can also cause a wide range of other emotions, one of those being fear. There are many leadership styles covering those that inspire to those that intimidate. Two main approaches to leadership are transactional, popular in the 1950s through the 1970s, and transformational, more recently noted (Ott, Parkes, & Simpson, 2008). Over the years, study of these approaches, and leadership in general, discuss giving orders (Follett, 1926), functions of leaders (Barnard, 1984), the Contingency Model (Fiedler, 1966), what makes a leader and their character (Tichy & Ulrich, 1984; Schein, 1984; Goleman, 1999; Chemers, 2002), and reframing leadership (Bolman & Deal, 2003). All mention leaders’ strengths and touch on their weaknesses, but also raise the question of what makes leaders effective and causes people to follow them.
Gaps in the Literature
Although leadership is a broad topic encompassing various styles and theories, careful consideration reveal gaps in the literature. From the birth of leadership and organizational theory early pioneers have influenced scholars and researchers. Their writings and ideas have endured through the years, evolved, and influenced leaders today, but over time some of their original thoughts have been lost. Writers often rely on others’ words leading to…

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