Bureaucratic Leadership Style

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The post-bureaucratic environment has enabled an evolution of managerial practices in a multitude of areas, none more evident than in the practice of leadership. Thus one can argue that not only have the practices of leadership changed, but they have also become far more important in the post-bureaucratic era. As Meindl, Ehrcuh and Dukerich note, it is the ‘sheer volume of theory and research’ in recent decades that is ‘testimony to the prominence of leadership’ and the ’collective effort’ of desire to understand it. To understand how leadership practices have changed however, an understanding of both the bureaucratic approach and the vast array of more contemporary leadership styles and theories that followed must be studied. Not only does …show more content…

Conceptually, post-bureaucratic leadership surrounds ‘unobtrusive peer based teamwork control’, and blurs the segments of the hierarchy between the influencing agent- the manager- and the persons influenced- the employees. This is not to say that post-bureaucratic leadership is any less authoritive, but rather replaces distinction of the hierarchy with even-leveled democratic networks. Through a democratic leadership style, when a goal has been identified a leader encourages members of a team to input the most efficient and effective ways of achieving this, and then supports them in completing the goal or …show more content…

Through emphasis on the context of a leader, there is a desire for a leader to be able to be flexible and adapt to their circumstances. The effect of a particular situation can affect the perspective of ones leadership skills, as demonstrated in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks by New York Mayor Giuliani. Prior to the attacks his popularity as a leader was questionable, however Dutton notes that his ‘public display of grief’ allowed for anguish, but also ‘ strengthened people's resolve to rebuild and restore confidence in the city’ and thus Giuliani’s own leadership ability. This style of leadership is recognized as transformational leadership, which is ideal in times of great change. In cohesion with post-bureaucratic ideals, transformational leadership involves a visionary component that can inspire and motivate people to work towards change, leading to increased performance. Thus by showing empathy, much like Giuiliani through showing his own humanity, leaders are able to create an open- yet continuously productive- environment. This focus on a more humane and open leadership styles, is a clear indication on a change in practices in a post-bureaucratic era, comparatively to hierarchical bureaucratic

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