This is an essay on leadership focusing on the flexibility quality of the leaders. Whether the leaders can change their behavior, way of interaction, and their personality, are explained in this essay. The leaders have to deal with different situations. So they are supposed to be flexible enough to adjust to the situations.
One of the bases for evaluating leaders by others is the way and type of interaction by the leaders. To be called a good leader, one must be flexible enough to adjust to different situations. Sometimes it may be difficult to be flexible because of the nature of the work, but the leaders are expected to have enough patience and adjust to the situation. It is obvious to say that interaction, situation, and behavior are related to each other. If he can manage these 3 in a good way he can see good results.
Interaction with others
The interaction of the leaders with others mainly depends on the situation. Good leaders are those who can act according to the situation. Some situations may arise which require taking a crucial decision within no time. According to Role Theory and Multiple-influence, the acts of a leader are largely influenced by the situation. (Chapter11: Part 1). If the interaction of the leader with the followers is good, he would be able to provide satisfaction to his followers and thereby ensure the effective implementation of leadership. The followers may be having different characters. The success of the leader lies in changing the way of the interaction based on the character of the followers. The followers will always be supporting the interactive model of leadership. The leader can temporarily assign the role of leadership to his followers. And even the leader can become the follower for a short time so that the discussion between both the parties would be more interactive. (Newham, 2006).
The leaders have to interact not only with the followers but also with the outsiders. When interacting with society, the leader has to consider different factors like culture, social system…etc. He should have the ability to make adjustments in the way of interaction according to the custom and system of the society. Society will always be watching the acts of the leaders. They expect a proper way of interaction from the leaders. So the leaders should rise according to the expectations of the society.
Change in Behaviour
The ability of the leaders is tested during crisis times. That is, a good leader should be able to make changes in behavior in the crisis period. Leadership can be made effective by clearly understanding the situation, making decisions, and acting accordingly. (Chapter 11, p. 566). According to the path-goal theory of the contingency model, the behavior of the followers is largely influenced by the behavior of leaders. The theory explains how the leaders can support the followers for accomplishing the goals. The theory suggests that the leader should clearly define the goal and the path for accomplishing the particular goal. (Path-goal theory of leadership 2009). The leaders are expected to behave gently and according to the situation. Sometimes problems may arise in the organization. During that situation, the leader has to make adjustments in his behavior, so that he can be successful in his role as a leader.
Some of the factors that play as obstacles in the effective implementation of the leadership role are “(a) intolerance, (b) cupidity, (c) greed, (d) jealousy, (e) suspicion, (f) revenge, (g) egotism, (h) conceit, (i) the tendency to reap where they have not sown, and (j) the habit of spending more than they earn.” (Green, 2009).
If a leader has any of the above said bad qualities, it will really affect his personal as well as organizational growth. Different programs can help leaders to change their behavior.
Change in Personality
The personality of the leader has a significant influence on the effectiveness of the leadership. A good leader should have a personality that is flexible and changeable according to the situation. If the leader does not have a good personality, he will not be accepted by the followers and society. A leader is said to have a good personality if he has some important qualities which are given below:
“N = Need for stability, negative emotionality, neuroticism
E = Extraversion, positive emotionality, sociability
O = Originality, openness, imagination
A = Agreeableness, accommodation, adaptability
C = Consolidation, conscientiousness, will to achieve.” (Brusman).
If the leader does not have the above qualities he needs to think of changing his personality, otherwise, his survival as a leader will be threatened. While changing the personality he has to make sure that it does not affect him badly. So it should be done wisely. Different theories on leadership give significance to the point of change according to the situation. A good leader should be an open-minded person who can change as and when required. “Openness to experience is a personality trait that relates to divergent thinking.” (Williams 2004).
The present-day world is highly competitive. To survive in their position, leaders should be ready to change according to the situation. They have to make a change in interaction, personality, and behavior.
Brusman, Maynard, Leadership personality: Do you have the big five traits? Executive Coaching & Leadership Consulting, 2009, Web.
Chapter 11: Part 1. (Provided by the Customer).
Chapter11: Crises, P. 566. (Provided by the Customer).
Green, Daryl 2009, , Ezine articles.
Newham, Chris 2006, Interactive leadership, the associate and the leader-follower, The Leader-Follower, Web.
2009, Changing Minds.org.
Williams, Scott David 2004, Personality, attitude and leader influences on divergent thinking and creativity in organizations: Abstract, Emerald, Web.