The role of a leader is to inspire and generate followers who are also individual leaders. The task of a leader is the ability to make change happen in a constructive way. Outstanding leaders become a fine balance between traits, abilities and behaviors. Leadership has been defined in terms of group processes, personality, compliance, particular behaviors, persuasion, power, goal achievement, interaction, role differentiation, initiation of structure, and a combination of two or more of these. (Luthans, 2005). Leaders are agents of change; persons whose acts affect other people more than other people’s acts affect them. (Gibson,Ivancevich,Donelly & Konopaske, 2012). A good leader should be a good communicator and a fine balance between traits, abilities & behaviors.
Leadership is a process by which a person influences others to accomplish an objective and directs the organizations in a way that makes it more cohesive and coherent. Leaders follow this process by applying their leadership attributes such as beliefs, values, ethics, character, knowledge and skills. (Charantimath.P, 2017). Some of the famous leaders defined leadership in different ways.
Jack Welch stated “Good business leaders create a vision, passionately own a mission and relentlessly drive till completion”.Warren Bennis stated that “Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality”.N.R.Narayanamurthy stated “ Leadership is all about the courage to dream big”. A.P.J.Abdul Kalam the former president and scientist of India stated “ Invisible leadership is exercising the vision to change the traditional role from commander to coach, from manager to mentor, from director to delegator and from one who demands respect to one who facilitates self-respect”.
Effective leaders tend to be leaders who create a vision, build a team, act as a role model, take decisive decisions and be an inspiration. (Charantimath.P, 2017). Leaders should develop strategic planning in order to realize the vision which means they follow and focus on a common goal. Energetic leaders know how to build a group into a team, they effectively help them to build their team by providing activities and resources. Effective leaders always act as a role model for their followers which means at every level of achievements or failures they intend to be responsive of the fact that they are role models for quality and all achievements. Leaders are always responsible for taking decisive decisions in which they should always make sure that the decisions made by them are always benefitted to the organization within the specific time period and the decision taken should be completely based on the facts and figures. Great leaders always should be inspirational, visionary and innovative who takes a work force beyond concession and into the environment where his employees or followers believe in the vision and will be in the need to achieve it.
Leadership roles pertain to “ the observable way of performing leadership”. The general theory of moral leadership can be categorized into two major functions distinguished as the transformational role and the transactional role. (Burns.J, 1978) described that Transforming leadership occurs when one or more persons engage with others in such a way that leaders and followers raise one another to higher levels of motivation and morality. The two examples of transforming leaders are Mao and Gandhi. According to (Burns.J, 1978) Mao and Gandhi they met their people’s initial needs but instead of riding them to power remained sensitive to their higher purposes and needs. In following this, they served not only to inform their purposes and needs but also to bring their people closer to achieving them. According to (Charantimath.P, 2017) Transactional leaders have an obligation to get things done, ensure achievements of targets and maximize effectiveness and efficiency of various groups and Transformational leaders bring out cultural change by” leading the organization toward a new broader view of the world”.
There are several theoretical bases for leadership. The great man theory of leadership implies that some individuals are born with certain traits that allow them to emerge out of a situation to become leaders. This great approach becomes associated with the trait theory of leadership. Political leaders such as Abraham Lincoln, Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, and Martin Luther King can be identified as highly influential, inspiring and visionary ‘born leaders’ who with their personal charisma, intelligence, wisdom or political skill made an impact to the world.
The great man theory evolved into the trait theory in the early 20th century. The trait approach is concerned mainly with identifying the personality traits of a leader. Traits are “enduring attributes associated with an individual’s make up or personality and physical characteristics, such as height, attractiveness, athleticism etc” (Bennis, WG & Thomas, RJ, 2002). Barack Obama, the 44th President of the USA can be considered as an epitome of personality traits, being more than six feet tall he has a deep voice, a good posture and a fit body. His speeches are laden with power and prestige.
“Trait theories of leadership sought personality, social, physical or intellectual traits that differentiate leaders from non-leaders” (Chitale et al, 2019). Stodgill reviewed literature on leadership and found that various researchers identified five physical traits related to leadership ability such as energy appearance and height together wth four intelligence and ability traits and sixteen personality traits such as adaptability aggressiveness enthusiasm and self-confidence. Nowadays the emphasize of trait approach has been lifted from personality towards job related skills. Katz identified the technical conceptual and human skills needed foe effective management. Yukul included the skills needed to select a leader to manage the management such as creativity, organization, persuasiveness, diplomacy and tactfulness. Knowledge of the task and the ability to speak well.
Behavioral theories of leadership propose that specific behaviors differentiate leaders from non- leaders. (Chitale et al, 2019). Trait theories explain leaderships on the basis of what leaders are while behavioral approach tend to explain how they perform their role behavior. Researchers identified four types of behavioral leadership: concern of tasks ( production or output), concern for people, directive leadership and participative leadership. Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft Corporation is an autocratic leader who possessed most of the leadership traits that are found in the behavioral approach. Gates in building Microsoft participated and delegated work while directing his team to achieve set goals. He always recruited and kept the best gifted people in the software industry. He built trust and loyalty partly by taking his employee’s opinion into account. He possessed the ability to work in a competitive atmosphere assuring the best outcome to reach his customers.
Mark Zuckerberg, the co-founder and CEO of facebook possesses a transformational leadership style and is described as an en encouraging and aggressive leader. According to (Vargas.J.A, 2010) Mark Zuckerberg always demands constant innovation and growth. He is a leader who uses all 3 styles of leadership (autocratic, democratic and laissez- faire). He guides his fellow workers to do there given tasks and constantly asks feedback from everyone. He trust and treats his employees equally. (Vargas.J.A, 2010) said, employees loved him for several reasons such as he intends in removing barriers and legitimacy, he respects everyone’s ideas and has a clear vision, he ignores pointless workplace traditions and gives out freedom for his employees and empowers them. He is deeply involved in his vision which shows that he legitimately wants to change the world.
According to (Dr. Clarke.E, 2014) Mark Zuckerberg has learned from his mistakes, takes risks,and has grown his company as a visionary leader. He is goal oriented and fully focused on leading his team to produce the best social media and web developing platform in the world. Zuckerberg believes that great people who work with clear direction can produce positive results. He believes that employees should be hired based on their passion and not their skillset. He explains that, “skills can be taught, passion can’t,” (Walter.E, 2014). As described in (Belscher, 2012) Zuckerbergs leadership style can be described as aggressive, encouraging with constant growth and innovation which is encouraging to his employees. Hence, Mark Zuckerberg can be identified as a visionary, passionate leader who possessed transformational leadership style.