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In leadership practice, motivation is important and functions between individual interaction and internal attributes of the involved parties. As a component of motivational functionality, expectancy theory discusses the aspect of perception that an individual holds towards leadership practice and influence. As a matter of fact, this theory expounds on the implementation mechanism of leadership in broad environmental spectra. Thus, this analytical treatise attempts to explicitly review the relevance of leadership expectancy theory in the leadership style of Nelson Mandela. Specifically, the treatise explores the significance of motivational, behavioral and collaborative functions in effective leadership practice.
The Tenet of Mandela’s Leadership
The expectancy theory offers the most ethically viable options for proactive leadership behavior management. This argument is supported by the experiences since performance and ethical decision making processes are skewed towards familiarity with a situation (Leigh and Maynard, 2002). Nelson Mandela’s proactive leadership was greatly molded by the past experiences and personal desires to rise above the environmental challenges of his time. His legacy is a classic reference of internalized leadership even when the formal authority is withdrawn. Despite being in prison for more than two decades, Mandela’s influence grew and he was later crowned the president. The influence did not stop and instead grew globally due to the positive impact of his leadership approach (PBS, 2009).
On the other hand, the aspect of performance-outcome expectancy as part of expectancy theory apprehends the perception that an individual hold in regards to leadership reward. Thus, the higher the motivational expectation, the better the performance of such an individual in terms of leadership practice. For instance, a quantifiable paradigm shift in perception can be linked to the correlation between reward and performance of an operations manager in an organization. The valence expectancy explores the weight an individual allocates to a reward in motivating performance. The higher the weight allocated to the expected reward, the higher the motivation of better performance when all other factors are held constant (Leigh and Maynard, 2002). Mandela’s expected reward included change and better society. Thus, Mandela activated the elements of motivation, mobilization and integration of other members of the global society to ignite the internal satisfaction of collaboration for good purposes (PBS, 2009).
The behavioral leadership model could also be applied in understanding the leadership style of Nelson Mandela. Mandela’s behavioral leadership model involved actual and observed experiences of individuals within a similar environment and under the same situation. The visual representational meaning of the memory stages conveys the relationship between the participants and the depicted structuring. The creation of a visual representational meaning proposes the space-based model for analysis centered on the placement of objects within the semiotic space of memory (Leigh and Maynard, 2002). The conceptual processes define, analyze, and classify places, people or things, including abstract ones in the encoding process. For instance, the personal decision to reconcile South African with the colonizers rather than kicking them out established a foundation of sustainable peace and tranquility.
In line with valence reward as part of the expectancy theory, every individual should be a role model of the other. Besides, they should develop self-confidence by elucidating own individual values to attract the expected reward. Actually, this is possible through setting good examples through conforming to shared values of the team (Leigh and Maynard, 2002). Mandela’s approach to leadership was greatly influenced by personal motivation to make a difference. He visualized the future through perceiving to achieve pleasant and excellent possibilities such as independence of South Africa, eradication of poverty, and a sustainable global fight against HIV and other diseases common in poor parts of the world. This was within reach through interaction with various matrices to achieve common objectives. Mandela was committed to great improvement in the social, economic and political space of mankind (PBS, 2009).
Leigh, A., & Maynard, M. (2002). Leading your team: how to involve and inspire teams. London, UK: Nicholas Brealey Publishing.
PBS. (2009). The long walk of Nelson Mandela. Web.