Discuss the appropriateness of using the same leadership style across all EU countries. Include in your discussion the research results for both views given in your textbook. Effective’s leaders can motivate followers to contribute more. The leader derives power from his characteristics, ability to influence people, and his acceptance. An effective leader needs to be very careful in choosing his leadership style, not all leaders can practice all leadership styles. The Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, Hofstede’s theory and other theories are equally applicable across cultures.
There are variations because of different level of individualism, culture, and religion. The functions of leadership remain the same across countries however; same leadership style should not be used across cultures. The Anthropological study done by Mead indicates that effective leadership varies across cultures. The accepted image of a leader varies from one culture to the other. The modern leadership theory also recognizes that same leadership style cannot work in all situations. (Deresky, 2013) A leadership style which is very useful in a particular situation may not be effective in a different situation.
For example, according to Hofstede, participative style of leadership, the most recommended leadership style by American researchers, may be counterproductive in certain cultures. This means, a single leadership style cannot be successful in different cultures. Even in same culture, an effective leader uses different leadership styles in different situations. The European Union (EU) comprises of 27 countries and 400 million people. The member countries of EU differ in language, culture, history, education system, values and belief. Deresky, 2013) Practicing same leadership style in all those countries is not appropriate.
In the EU different leadership styles would be appropriate depending on their culture, socioeconomic background, history, and religion. For example, in France, autocratic style of leadership is more effective. Same leadership style cannot be appropriate in Germany as Germans are more assertive and task oriented. DDI, an international HR consultancy, conducted a survey of 200 chief executives in France, Germany, and UK also concluded that a leader who operates within one leadership style may not be successful in all cultures. Deresky, 2013) If a leader who operates in autocracy style applies his leadership style in a culture which is more democratic, he is likely to trip up. Considering the diversity of culture, the subordinates in different member countries of EU have different expectations from a leader. The leader needs to understand the expectations of the subordinates and also needs to evaluate his capabilities and expertise before choosing his leadership style.
In the European Union, a business leader needs an EU style rather than local leadership style. According to Kets de Vries and Korotov, Japanese or American companies, can succeed with their predominantly local leadership style. But same is not true for EU. The EU countries are not isolated from each other. There is blending of labor, goods and services, and process across the EU countries. (Deresky, 2013) There is need of developing one EU leadership style which can work across Euro countries.