Leadership Effectiveness

1530 Words7 Pages
Relationship between Leader Traits, Motives and Effectiveness
Introduction
The presence of certain inherent traits and their impact on leadership has been one of the earliest topics of research into leadership. After a long period of being relegated to the background, the importance of leadership traits is being appreciated by recent scholars.
This paper addresses how leader traits continue to determine the effectiveness of leaders, however, within the constraints imposed by the environment and situation. The influence of leader motives as shaped by their need for acquiring more power and influence, forming positive relationships with subordinates, and personal self-actualization also has a moderating influence on leader outcomes, which is
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An interesting observation made by Judge, Piccolo and Kosalka (2009) is that there is a different set of traits associated with leadership emergence and a different set that is associated with leadership effectiveness. The authors also obtain support for the relationship between leadership traits and leadership effectiveness from evolutionary psychology and behavioral genetics. Judge, Piccolo and Kosalka (2009) explain, for instance, the phenomenon of the environmental moderators which form the context within which certain traits contribute to leadership effectiveness more than others. They also state that certain traits, such as charisma, acts as moderators themselves in influencing the relationship between leadership emergence and leadership effectiveness (Judge, Piccolo and Kosalka, 2009).
Agreeableness, for example, is a trait that enables leaders to be effective provided that they have a high need for affiliation. It enables the leader to be more effective by way of forming cooperative relationships with subordinates and team members. Mayer, Bardes and Piccolo (2008) state that the agreeableness trait enables leaders to demonstrate greater empathy towards subordinates when they have to deliver negative or critical feedback on
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In fact, Zaccaro, Wood and Herman (2006) argue, the leadership traits also determine the ability of the leader to acquire new attributes and skills that might expand the leader’s skill set and thus increase his or her effectiveness in a diverse array of settings. In this way, leadership traits can determine the effectiveness of training and development opportunities offered to the leader by the organization. At the same time, cognitive capacities and motive for self-actualization can make the leader more effective at learning from experience and thus adopting more effective leadership skills to employ in different types of settings.
Luria and Berson (2012) describe the impact of leader motives on leader performance. Their study is focused on a military context, but the findings may prove relevant to organizational leadership as well. According to Luria and Berson (2012), leaders who possess high motivation to lead are more likely to engage in teamwork behavior when carrying out their
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