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The Quality of Leader-Member Exchange Essay

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Updated: May 7th, 2019


The quality of LMX (leader-member exchange) has the repercussions of affecting the workers in terms of productivity, ethics, perceptions and satisfaction. The followers have tendencies to respond to the trust portrayed towards them by the leaders during the exchange process.

The reciprocations anticipated from the subjects include different performance levels and depiction of certain ‘citizenship behaviors.’ Evidently, leaders on one hand establish social exchanges which are of high quality to some segregated members of the followers while on the other hand, portray economic exchanges which are of low quality toward others.

In most of the times, the economic exchanges hardly go beyond employment contracts. To maintain cute LMX relationship, certain obligations are laid on the leader. The leader must pay an ardent attention to feelings of the various group members forming his/her followers, appreciate and respond to the feelings of the subjects and depend for the better part, on methods of influence that are time consuming for instance consultation and persuasion.

Most discouraged is deployment of provocative authority or coercive ways to get things done. This way the leaders enhances establishment of hiked exchange relationships, which are often desired by the subjects.

Examples of such exchange relationships include assignment of desirable tasks, facilitation of information sharing, conferring special favors and authority without negating responsibility delegation among others. The followers in turn are anticipated to have considerable loyalty to the leader with the autonomy so conferred translating into hard work and commitment to various assigned duties.

Three stage process for developing positive LMX relation

The process of developing positive LMX relation embraces three stages. In the first stage, followers and the leader behave themselves as if they were strangers. Tests between the two parties are conducted aimed at determining what code of behaviors is worth and acceptable. So far, determined relationships undergo negotiations in an informal way between the leader and each of the followers.

Activities such as self promotion with an attempt to bring out dependability and competency traits, ingratiation in an effort to make one appear appreciative, respectful and supportive and impressions management are essential constituents of the first stage.

In the second stage, followers and the leaders become more acquainted with each other. The refinement of the roles they expect together takes place alongside with attempts to develop loyalty, respect and mutual trust between each other.

Finally at stage three, the enumerated roles attains the level of maturity, exchanges engulfed in the cloud of self interest enters transformation to mutual subscriptions to uphold objectives, goals and missions of predetermined job units.

Leaders I have worked with

The many leaders, I have encountered and worked with for quite a long period in the customer service department, have managed to depict two outstanding and significantly different cases. On one extreme, there is leader who almost does not determine what the employees have to involve in on daily basis.

All he sets are targets to be achieved over a certain prescribed business period. The employees are called upon to make their own program to ensure that the targets are precisely met within the specified period. The model of relationship between the followers and the leader was based on the kaizen model of operation, which focuses on continuous improvement.

The contribution of every worker was well-recognized and appropriate reward given for anything done above the standard. Where the established standards are not well met or, the predetermined targets are unmet in totality, the leader involved all he workers in negotiations to determine the possible drawbacks, which might have facilitated such an occurrence.

All the workers worked tremendously hard to achieve the goals of the organization simply by recognizing that the fate of the organization depended squarely on what they indulge in on daily basis. This way the leader managed to draw and inculcate leader follower loyalty without having to force things out.

This I can describe as the most successful leader: one with whom I had high quality relationship, since he recognized the significance of every subject in relation to the overall objectives of the organization. He was the kind of a leader who addressed meeting confined to evaluate the achievements of the organization with remarks like, “through the hard work of all employees the organization has managed to…”

On the other extreme was a leader who believed that all organization’s achievements were principally attributable to his capacity to compel the workers to work according to his commands. He attributed outstanding achievements beyond set standards to differences in level of skills endowment and to him, rewarding the extra accomplishments were like an insult to the trailers.

Bossy commands were daily encounters with none appreciation of the professional qualification of workers considerations. It was no hard to be allocated a task that was completely out of your specialty. The workers responded with poor motivation.

Their main drive was the salary. The ideals of the leader were that, he is always right and thus, views of all his subjects were insignificant and they always deserved to come last if at all they have to be given a glance.

The rule was you do either what he wants, following his prescribed procedures or quit. Such amounts to what I can describe as the one who I posses low quality relationship with.

Attributes that describe the high quality and the low quality relationships leaders

Customer service entangles putting into place appropriate signals to reach people who are mostly outside the business arena. The responses to these signals determine largely the destiny of an organization in terms of prosperity. It is therefore paramount for the customer service to be thought of as an issue of leadership.

Attending trainings, reading, or even having people address the topic about customer service are not substantial to give a true reflection of what it is to be on the utmost end: receiving end. The incumbents of the customer service need thus not be just managers but leaders who need t o posses certain traits that enable them to address ardently the customers’ issues.

The high quality relationship leaders remain characterized by high degree of resources possibility, providing more career guidance in development, and ones who are endowed with high social support skills. Such leaders also have outstanding capacity to facilitate negotiations coupled with recognition of the necessity to give provision of follower’s inputs before arriving at conclusive decisions ability.

On the other hand, low quality relationships leaders are more often than not characterized by traits which are completely opposite of priory mentioned characteristics of high quality relationship leaders. In addition, they record incredible dwindled amount of support, embrace more of formal supervision strategies, and consider absolutely none or little follower involvements while arriving at decisions.

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1. IvyPanda. "The Quality of Leader-Member Exchange." May 7, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/leadership-13/.


IvyPanda. "The Quality of Leader-Member Exchange." May 7, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/leadership-13/.


IvyPanda. 2019. "The Quality of Leader-Member Exchange." May 7, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/leadership-13/.


IvyPanda. (2019) 'The Quality of Leader-Member Exchange'. 7 May.

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