Initiating structure and consideration behavior in leadership
The nature of behaviors that leaders portray is subject to different factors. For example, some superiors rate leaders based on their capability to plan and organize activities. Therefore, leaders, who want to improve their ratings to their superiors, will show a high initiating structure. However, the same leaders may also understand the need for being considerate to team members. Therefore, a leader is likely to show a high initiating structure and high consideration behaviors when he or she wants to please the superiors and achieve the set goals by collaborating with his or her team members. However, in other cases, autocratic leaders trying to please their superiors may not be concerned with the welfare of their team members. Therefore, such leaders will portray high initiating structure and low consideration behaviors.
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In other instances, leaders may not be pressurized by their superiors and they may be judged through their achievements. For example, in a participative leadership style, leaders do not have to prove themselves by adhering to some static structures. In such cases, performance determines the effectiveness of a leader. Therefore, a leader under such conditions may show a low initiating structure and high consideration behaviors. This participative nature of leadership allows leaders to engage team members at all levels in different decision-making opportunities. As such, all the involved parties give their input on how goals should be achieved among other issues.
Finally, in some cases, autocratic leaders may be involved in a system where superiors believe in laissez-faire leadership. Therefore, such leaders may show a low initiating structure and low consideration behaviors. In this case, the involved leaders are not pressurized by their superiors, thus creating room for low initiating structure behavior. However, being autocratic, the leaders may not consider the suggestions or contributions from workers concerning the organization’s decision-making process. This form of leadership has many drawbacks, such as high employee turnover and lack of creativity because strategic decisions and directions come from a single source (Yahaya and Ebrahim 199).
Main lessons learned about leadership
The two main lessons that I have learned are motivation and coaching. For instance, I now understand the three basic components that must be present for motivation to take place. Therefore, in the future, as I advance in leadership roles, I will ensure that valence, instrumentality, and expectancy are available before I start any form of motivation program. I will then set specific goals as I have learned that such a strategy leads to higher performance as opposed to generalized goals. I will also remember that the amount of effort that employees put into a given project depends on the expected reward that they stand to gain in return.
In five years from today, I will still remember that effective leaders are good coaches, and thus motivators. My main purpose for coaching employees will be to help them learn from the job and develop as individuals. I will ensure that I give employees the requisite resources for them to make independent decisions. Besides, I will remember and avoid the different myths associated with coaching, such as coaches need to be experts in a certain field to assist others. Finally, I will employ some coaching skills that I have learned such as careful listening, relationship building, content reflection, and clear communication with group members. I will also give team members the needed space and time to model the desired performance and behavior.
Yahaya, Rusliza, and Fawzy Ebrahim. “Leadership Styles and Organizational Commitment: Literature Review.” Journal of Management Development, vol. 35 no. 2, 2016, pp.190-216.