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    Sunday, September 23, 2012

    The Trait Theory of leadership

    Leadership Traits

    The first organized approach to studying leadership analyzed the personal, psy¬chological, and physical traits of strong leaders. The trait approach assumed that some basic trait or set of traits existed that differentiated leaders from nonreaders If those traits could be defined, potential leaders could be identified Researchers thought that leadership traits. right include intelligence, asseinveness, above-average height, good vocabulary: attractiveness self-confidence, and similar attributes. During the first half of the twentieth century, hundreds of studies were con¬ducted in an attempt to identify important leadership traits. For the most part, the results of the studies were disappointing. For every se, of leaders who possessed a common trait,, a long list of exceptions was also found, and the list of suggested traits soon grew so long that it had little practical value. Alternative explanations usually existed even for relationships between traits and leadership that initially appeared valid. For example, it was observed that many leaders have good com-munication skills and are assertive. Rather than those traits' being the cause of leadership, however, successful leaders may begin to display those traits after they have achieved a leadership position.

    Situational Factors

    Like other situational theories of leadership, path -goal theory suggests that appropriate leader style depends on situational factors. Path¬ goal theory focuses on the situational factors of the personal characteristics of sub¬ordinates and environmental characteristics of the workplace. Important personal characteristics include the subordinates' perception of their own ability and their locus of control I2 people perceive that they are lacking in ability, they may prefer directive leadership to help them understand path-goal relationships better. If they perceive themselves to have a lot of ability, however, employees may resent directive leadership.

    Path goal theory

    A theory of leadership suggesting that the primary functions of a leader are to make valued or desired rewards available in the workplace and to clearly for the workplace and to clarify for the subordinate the kinds of behavior that will lead to those rewards. The path-goal theory of leadership suggests that the primary functions of a leader are to make valued or desired rewards available in the workplace and to clarify for the subordinate the kinds of behavior that will lead to goal accomplishment and valued rewards-that is, the leader should clarify the paths to goal attainment.

    Leader Behavior

    The most fully developed version of path goal identifies four kinds of leader behavior. Directive leader behavior lets subordinates know what is expected of them, gives guidance and direction, and schedules work. Supportive leader r behavior is being friendly and approachable, showing concern for subordinate welfare, and treating mem¬bers as equals. Participative leader Behavior include, consult¬ing with subordinates, soliciting suggestions, and participation in decision making. Achievement oriented leader behavior means setting challenging goals, expecting subordinate to perform at high levels, encouraging subordinates, and showing confidence in subordinate’s abilities.  
    You may also like to read:
    Various Types Of Leadership
    The Individual Human Needs
    Maslow Needs Hierarchy

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