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Leadership in context of change management

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AbstractToday the world has become a global village and markets have expanded to the extent that now firms are competing on a global level.

This on one has provided firms with a massive opportunity and on the other hand it also demands more hard-work and effort from the workers. The challenge therefore is how to tackle the ever-changing work-environment.When we speak of the dynamic work environment we also have to realise the importance of Good Leadership in such a scenario.

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So, the leaders of today’s companies have a lot to care about and a lot of responsibilities to take care of.

Therefore, it is ultimately up to the leadership to make most of the human skills at hand motivate them in order to make sure that they adapt quickly and easily to the work environment and thus maximise efficiency.In this dissertation, I have tried to explain how good leaders make the most of whatever opportunities come their way and how they have been able to overcome the various impediments that stood in their way.

I have addressed to some of the main questions such as what is needed to change, what needs to happen to make it a reality, how can we make it happen, why individual opposes change with respect to the impacts and influence of the leadership involved.I have also tried to cite some of the major factors that play a vital role in Organizational development, and how leaders have been an active part of the change process.

How leaders can fuel the change process and be a role-model for his sub-ordinates.I have referred to some business journals for help and guidance. These include Harvard Business review, EBSCO and Emerald. I have also referred to some books mainly on management, leadership, social and cultural changes, etc.

;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;1.     IntroductionLeadership is most often recognized where changes take place. In changing times, is when leadership or the lack of it is evident. This opens up the question: Do we need leaders? If leadership (or lack of it) is evident in changing times, then is no surprise that more than ever do we need leaders because we are living in this fast paced society, with even faster changing habits and trends, with uncertainty all around us.

Today’s companies are struggling to remain competitive in the face of increasingly tough global competition, uncertain environments, cutbacks in personnel and resources, and massive worldwide political, social and economic shifts. The growing diversity of the workforce brings new challenges: maintaining a strong corporate culture while supporting diversity; balancing work and family concerns; coping with conflicts brought upon by the demands of women and ethnic minorities for increased power and responsibilities. Worker’s want their managers to share rather than hoard power. Organizational structures are becoming flatter, with power and information pushed down and out among fewer layers and with teams of front line workers playing new roles as decision makers.

;Because of these changes a revolution is taking place in the field of management. A new kind of leader is needed who can guide businesses through this turbulence- a strong leader who recognises the complexity of today’s world and realises that there are no perfect answers. The revolution asks leaders to do more with less, to see change rather than stability as the nature of things and to create vision and cultural values that allow people to create a truly collaborative workplace. This new management approach is very different from a traditional mind-set that emphasizes tight top-down control, employee separation and specialization and management by impersonal measurements and analysis.

 Thus, today’s business world is highly competitive. The way to survive is to reshape to the needs of a rapidly changing world. Resistance to change is a dead-end street..

.for the leader himself and the organization. Customers are not only demanding excellent service, they are also demanding more. If you do not supply it, your competitors will.

Organizations are reshaping themselves to change quickly in order to meet the needs of their customers. The organization’s top leaders know they cannot throw money at every problem and that they need highly committed and flexible workers. As a leader, you need to emphasize action to make the change as quickly and smoothly as possible. There can be many reasons for the reluctance of the workforce towards change.

First of all, people are reluctant to alter their habits. What worked in the past is A good enough; in the absence of a dire threat, employees will keep doing what they have always done. And when an organization has had a succession of leaders, resistance of change is even stronger. A legacy of disappointment and distrust creates an environment in which employees automatically condemn the next turn around champion to failure, assuming that he or she is simply like the rest.

Calls for self-discipline and sacrifice are met with cynicism, scepticism and knee-jerk resistance. For change to stick, leaders must design and run an effective persuasion campaign-one that begins weeks and months before the actual turnaround, the plan is set in concrete. Managers must perform significant work upfront to ensure that employee will actually listen to the tough messages, question old assumptions and consider new ways of working. This means taking a series of subtle and deliberate steps to recast employees’ prevailing views and create a new context for action.

Such a shaping process must be efficiently managed and lead during the first few months of a turnaround when uncertainty is high and setbacks are inevitable. Otherwise there is little hope for sustained improvement (Michael Roberto and David Garvin, 2005).According to Richard Daft (1996), organizations go through four main changes throughout their growth:Formative PeriodRapid Growth PeriodMaturity PeriodDeclining PeriodFor some organizations the four periods of growth come and go very rapidly, for others, it may take decades. Failure to follow-through with the needed changes in any of the four growth periods means the death of the organization.

Some, such as IBM, do it successfully, others, like ATT, haven’t been that successful at doing so. Making a difference as a leader today and tomorrow requires a different approach from yesterday. Successful departments and organizations don’t just happen- they are lead to be that way. Leaders in every organization today face major challenges and have the opportunity to make a difference.

The Japanese have a term called “Kaizen,” which means continual improvement. It is a never-ending quest to do better. And you do better by changing. Standing still allows your competitors to get ahead of you.

Throughout periods of changes, which is just about all the time for a good organization, leaders need to concentrate on having their people go from change avoidance to change acceptance. There are five steps accompanying change (Conner, 1993):Denial – cannot foresee any major changesAnger at others for what they’re putting me throughBargaining – work out solutions, keep everyone happyDepression – is it worth it? Doubt, need supportAcceptance – the realityThis is why a worker’s first reaction to change is often to resist it. People get comfortable performing tasks and processes in a particular manner. This comfort provides them with the security that they are the masters of their environment.

Some of the things that cause them to fear change include a dislike of a disruption in their lives, looking like a fool by not being able to adapt and learn, their jobs might become harder, and a lose of control.Leaders can help the change process by changing their employees’ attitude from avoidance into acceptance. This is often best accomplished by changing avoidance questions and statements into acceptance questions:From “Why?” to “What new opportunities will this provide?”When they ask “why,” focus on the benefits that the change will provide them and the organization. Do NOT feel uncomfortable if you are feeling hesitation about the change too.

..you are also human. By spelling out the benefits, you will not only comfort them, but help to convince yourself too.

 From “How will this affect me?” to “What problems will this solve?”Anything that prevents something from being better is a problem. Let them know what the problem is and how they will be part of the solution.From “We do not do it this way.” to “What would it look like?”Show them, provide plenty of explanations and compassion, and get your team to ask and answer questions.

From “When will this change be over so we can get back to work?” to “What can I do to help?”Get them involved in implementing the change. Help them to become part of it.From “Who is doing this to us?” to “Who can help us?”Focus on the challenges that must be overcome. Ensure that you enlist help from other departments and colleagues.

 Change is further complicated as it does not always produce a direct adjustment. Each employee’s attitude produces a different response that is conditioned by feelings towards the change. In a classical experiment (Roethlisberger, et. el.

, 1939) the lighting was improved in a factory on a regular basis. The theory was that better lighting would lead to greater productivity. As expected, productivity did rise. The lighting was then decreased to show the reverse effect – lower productivity, but instead, productivity increased further! It was not until the lighting was down to the equivalent of moonlight (0.

06 footcandle) that an appreciable decline in output was noticed.;Of course it was not the change in lighting itself that caused the higher output, but rather an intervening variable. This variable was diagnosed as the employee’s attitudes. That is, when you introduce change, each employee’s personal history and social situation at work will produce a different attitude towards that change.

You cannot see or measure attitudes, but what you can see and measure is the response towards that change:Change + Personal history (nurture) + Social situation (environment) = Attitude + Response;In the factory workers’ case, productivity rose because they were being observed. This is known as the Hawthorne Effect (named after the factory where the research took place). It means that the mere observation of a group tends to change it. Although each person will have a different response to change (personal history), they often show their attachment to the group (social situation at work) by joining in a uniform response to the change.

For example, one person’s personal history might be so strong that she works harder when a change is introduced, while the rest of the group’s social situation is strong enough that they threaten to strike because of the change. Although each person in that group might want to do something different, such as place more demands, ignore the change, work harder, etc.; the need to belong to a group often sways individuals to follow a few individuals — “we are all in this together.” Sometimes the response towards change is influenced mostly by personal history, sometimes it is swayed mostly by the social situation.

 Feelings are contagious. When someone around you is feeling blue, it can bring you down. Likewise, when someone is passionate about something, it can have an inspiring effect. Build the change so that others want to be part of it.

When you give them part of it, also give them the authority and control to act upon it. Share the power so that they do not feel powerless. You want them to feel useful and enthusiastic. Make them feel needed, that the change could not happen without them! One of the key concepts behind leadership is ‘action’.

A leader has to develop a vision, has to communicate it and has to achieve it. Action is in the very essence of the leader’s existence.In order to achieve the vision (or goal) the leader has to master five practices, as Barry Posner and Jim Kouzes state in “The Leadership Challenge, 3rd Edition”. The practices are:1.

Challenge the Process2. Inspire a Shared Vision3. Enable others to act4. Model the Way5.

Encourage the HeartIn every single practice mentioned there are commitments that the leader has to work on. Those are:To Challenge the Process, the leader has to search for opportunities by seeking innovative ways to change, grow and improve. He has to experiment and take risks constantly.To Inspire a Shared Vision, the leader has to envision the future imagining exciting and ennobling possibilities.

He also has to enlist others in a common vision byappealing to shared aspirations.To Enable others to Act, the leader has to foster collaboration promoting cooperative goals and building trust. The leader has to strengthen others by sharing power and discretion.To Model the Way, the leader has to clarify his personal values and set the example aligning actions and shared values.

To Encourage the Heart, the leader has to recognize contributions by showing appreciation for individual excellence. The leader has to celebrate the values and victories by creating a spirit of community.(Barry Posner and Jim Kouzes, 2003)Speaking of vision, the great visionary and Revolutionist, Martin Luther King said, “I have a dream! You must provide passion and a strong sense of purpose of the change.”This clearly stresses upon the point that in order to bring about change one has to believe he can do so, and he has to stay ready for it, especially when we speak of a leader, he has to have faith and belief in his workforce, and on the contrary, it is absolutely essential that the workforce realise what their leader expects from them and that they need to share a passion for the betterment of the organization.

All of this emanates from the fact that a leader has to be the role-model for the workforce. He has to prove himself to his sub-ordinates by leading the change process and by being the first one to accept change, that is, change has to be his passion first and only then can it be a passion for all the employees working under him. In lesser words, a leader has to walk the talk. Leaders may also introduce or implement Kurt Lewin’s theory in order to make sure that the change process is carried out smoothly and there are no repercussions and that the entire workforce is able to keep pace with the evolution the organization goes through.

Kurt Lewin (1951) theorized that there are three stages to achieving attitudinal and behavioural change:UnfreezingThis step is often associated with diagnosis. Old ideals and processes must be tossed aside so that new ones may be learned. Often, getting rid of the old processes is just as difficult as learning new ones due to the power of habits. Just as a teacher erases the old lessons off the chalkboard before beginning a new lesson, so must a leader help to clear out the old practices before beginning the new ones.

During this part of the process you need to provide just a little bit of coaching as they are unlearning not learning and a lot of emotional support to break the old habits. During this phase, expertise of a change agent might also be utilized. The change agent is an Organizational Development expert and he/she performs a systematic diagnosis of the organization and identifies work-related problems. Agent may use tools such as personal interviews, questionnaires, and observations of meetings.

This helps determine the extent of the organizational problems and helps unfreeze managers by making them aware of problems in their behaviour.;;ChangingThe second phase occurs when individuals experiment with new behaviour and learn new skills to be used in the workplace. This is sometimes known as intervention, during which the change agent implements a specific plan for training managers and employees. This plan may include team-building, survey feedback, inter-group, process consultation, and symbolic leadership activities as described earlier.

;Although there will be confusion, overload and despair, there will also be hope, discovery, and excitement, which is why this period requires a lot of coaching.;RefreezingThe third phase occurs when individuals acquire new attitudes and values and are rewarded for them by the organization. The impact of the new behaviours is evaluated and reinforced. The change agent supplies new data that show positive changes in performance.

Leaders may also take the initiative of rewarding positive behavioural changes by employees. Leaders may also indulge managers and employees to participate in refresher courses to maintain and reinforce the new behaviours.;The new processes are now intellectually and emotionally accepted. What has been learned is now actually being practiced on the job.

Just a little bit of coaching is required to set up the next change process, not to forget that it is continuous process improvement!;;2.     MethodologyIn order to study and write this dissertation, I was able to gather information and facts mainly from some books on leadership, leadership practices, management, and change management. I also browsed through various issues of Harvard Business Review which regularly publishes articles on Leadership and various attributes associated with leadership. I also looked up for relevant and meaningful content online on various websites and online journals and sources such as Business source premier and EBSCO, etc.

;I also cited a few examples and cases of organizations that have undergone such a change and the lessons that are to be learned from such practical situations and cases that are available. I also analysed the General Electric and their CEO Jack Welch’s case extensively and tried to cite as many facts from it as I could find out and infer.         3.     Literature ReviewBeing a Leader is probably the most difficult job that exists.

So to speak there is no systematic means of acquiring leadership skills, although time and experience does make you a better leader, and the fact that leadership is an in-born skill is much debatable, no one can deny the fact that it is not easy to be a leader, or let’s say a good leader. In his article in January 2005 issue of Harvard Business Review Dan Ciampa states the following:”Shortly after being elected U.S. President in 1960, John Kennedy offered Robert McNamara, then President of Ford, the post of treasury secretary.

McNamara turned down the offer, saying he wasn’t qualified for the job. Then, Kennedy offered him the job of secretary of defense. When McNamara demurred again for the same reason, a frustrated Kennedy exclaimed: “Bob, there is no school to learn to be President, either!”;Leadership at the top is never easy for even the most experienced people. For someone taking on the job of CEO for the first time, mastering the new skills and sorting out the uncertainties that go with the position can be an overwhelming challenge.

The fact is that for most of the CEOs especially the freshly appointed ones it is exceedingly difficult to familiarise themselves with the responsibilities and the risks that are associated with the job, and usually it requires some time and experience before they can deliver. The Centre for Creative Leadership has estimated that 40% of new CEOs fail in their first 18 months. What’s more, the churn rate is on the rise: In a 2002 study, the centre found that the number of CEOs leaving their jobs had increased 10% since 2001 (Dan Ciampa, 2005). As a recent report from the outplacement firm Challenger, Gray ; Christmas points out, “The biggest challenge looming over corporate America [is] finding replacement CEOs.

”(Dan Ciampa, 2005);The facts are even more aggravated by the fact that Research conducted in the 1990s (by Michael Watkins, of Harvard Business School, Dan Ciampa) showed that, when promoted from within an organization, less than half the people who reached the number two spot expecting to win the CEO title actually ended up in the position. We also saw more organizations going outside their own ranks to hire designated successors–but disturbingly, once hired, only one-quarter of these candidates were successful at either being named CEO or at staying in the CEO job for more than two years (Dan Ciampa, 2005). All of this makes a leader’s job even more difficult and challenging. However, for an organization to succeed in the long run leadership is absolutely critical and that is why finding and selecting the right leader becomes even more important.

Take Coca Cola for an example, when the company lost its CEO Robert Goizueta in 1997, the two subsequent CEOs suffered in his shadow, as people expected them to perform the same way Goizueta did, however, leading as suggested earlier is the toughest job amongst all. Goizueta had guided Coke through its glorious years of the 1980s and the most of 1990s, leading it to perennially unrealistic expectations by shareholders. This is why change management is regarded as a tough job, because changes can occur in the external macro-environment and at the same time in the internal environment, as incase of Coke, whose CEO Robert Goizeuta died of cancer. And since then Coke has never been able to make up for the loss, and Pepsi has gained a significant market share since then.

Leadership is about discerning what should and should not be changed. It is about understanding the interplay of self and others, and perceiving the interconnectedness of personal and organizational values. It is about self-awareness and making choices. The key to any leadership model is the mechanism for decision making–how participation is balanced with leadership, how individual vision is reconciled with other visions, how multiple decision-making processes can be reconciled within the same institution.

It is about realization of self through service to others and the fulfillment of collective aspirations (Chris Ferguson, 2000).As we enter more fully into a transformative era in higher education fuelled by technology and characterized by the motto of 24/7, we require yet another kind of leader, one who is more relevant to the emerging realities of discontinuity, ambiguity, and persistent change and transition. Situations conducive to command-and-control leadership models are becoming less common, and the benevolent CEO model is becoming increasingly unwieldy. Mobility, integration, perpetual flux, nonlinearity, and visceral distrust of leaders and institutions are some of the hallmarks of the emerging environment.

Stewardship rather than personal stake, calibration of multiple visions rather than imposition of one’s own vision, high tolerance for ambiguity, ability to effect simplicity on the surface of complexity, and commitment to supporting both personal and organizational development are some of the hallmarks of the emerging leader for our time (Chris Ferguson, 2000).One of the most promising leadership models for an era of persistent change is “servant leadership,” as articulated by Robert Greenleaf (Greenleaf, 2002). Emphasizing connections between self and organization, between listening and understanding, and between language and imagination, servant leadership places the leader at the nexus, rather than at the pinnacle, of change. It equips the leader with tools that foster empowerment and enables participants to live more comfortably and creatively with persistent change.

In an era when agile response to sudden change is at a premium, servant leadership cultivates within organizations an increased capacity for efficient teamwork that uses mission as impelling force, values as cohering force, and vision as directing force, in short, the tools for effective adaptation to the discontinuities of our present environment (Chris Ferguson, 2000). Perhaps the hardest lesson for leaders of organizations these days may be that change is often far more about leading people through a transition than about changing the operations and structures around them.At some level, most of us know this intuitively, but through both positive and negative experiences one learns that it has become necessary to take this principle to another level of understanding and practice. One must honestly listen to, draw from, and meld the values, ideals, wisdom, and aspirations of both the organization and the larger parent institution.

Moreover, in order to effect lasting systemic change (rather than temporary changes that snap back into place at the first opportunity), it is important to focus as much on the human aspects of transition as on change outcomes.The second most difficult lesson for a leader in a transitional era may be to internalize the need to shift the leadership perspective from one’s own thinking to that of others, in order to calibrate one’s own vision with that of the organization, the institution, and key individuals beyond, and to see through the eyes of external constituents as well as through the eyes of employees. These seem to be simple tasks, but performing them consistently requires a degree of deference, discernment, and ideational humility that many leaders seem to lack (Chris Ferguson, 2000). It has rightly been pointed out ‘Change is external, transition is internal’ (Bridges, 1991).

An important dimension of leadership in a rapidly changing environment is the capacity to view organizational change and movement toward a vision as a train careening down tracks that are being placed only moments before the train speeds onto them, and to alternate frequently between the roles of train engineer and rail-slapper. The lesson here is that you sometimes don’t know exactly where the train is going, when your role is that of engineer or layer of rails, or just what kind of terrain lies over the next horizon; however, by sharing a mission and vision with people at all levels you can affect (if not steer) the overall course (Chris Ferguson, 2000).The challenge for the contemporary leader in an environment of rapid and continual change, then, is truly to get himself up to the vision, as well as to relinquish any effort to have direct control over the means of accomplishing it, once it has been placed into motion. It is certain that the values are changing and that demand is increasing for leaders who can clarify them for institutions, organizations, and even themselves.

If the workplace is demanding less command and control and more inspired organizational change, if leadership now requires more personal affect than direct control, if organizational effectiveness increasingly requires movement from low-trust/high-control to high-trust/low-control models, then transparent, values-based, egoless leadership is becoming all the more important.An effective leader enables an organization to go somewhere (presumably a good place) to which it otherwise would not have gone. The organization that has such a leader moves forward willingly and with a sense of fulfillment, having been fully engaged and appropriately inspired to become more than it was. In this era of persistent change and transition, leadership must be experienced as striving, a tension between opposites, growth through both negative and positive experiences, and fulfillment of both organizational and personal potential.

Effective leaders have a sense of calling, a vocation from which framing values are derived. The essence of an authentic leader is the feeling that she or he can make a difference and is willing to try. The effective postmodern leader thus repeatedly asks, “Why and for whom am I doing this?” As Viktor Frankl urges, we must intuitively understand what is the circumstance that cannot or should not be changed, and what is incumbent on us to try to change. And as Robert Greenleaf instructs, it is possible to shape our personal and professional worlds in ways that connect and enhance each other in service to the best interests of all.

What differentiates a leader from a malcontent is that the leader has learned and honed skills that allow him or her to move from dissatisfaction to effective action.Achieving significant change also means rocking the boat, and this inevitably creates some degree of turmoil. Occasional or one-time leaders may be very effective in achieving change, but find the upheaval too uncomfortable or personally drainingto sustain an ongoing climate of change. Institutional or personal reasons may also discourage such individuals from repeatedly initiating change.

Persistent innovators accept that disruption is inevitable, have a notion about how to reduce the turmoil, and generally have strong support networks. Studies have proven that they are most likely to thrive in institutions that are entrepreneurial and flexible.According to an article “Standing up and Delivering, Leadership for Change”, in order for companies are to be successful and evolve with the change in environment leaders must stand-up and deliver. According to the writer leaders frequently are missing in action in some key ways when big changes are required for their organizations, that is usually leaders delegate responsibilities and tasks and from there on they take the backstage, however they are the ones who should be leading and paving the way and should be the central figure responsible for delivering performance when it matters.

Missing in action might not mean “uncommitted” to the change needed in their organization. Commitment is expressed by many leaders when they launch a change and when they sign the purchase orders for the products and services needed for the change. But commitment in this launch and resources sense is just not enough to meet the needs of organization members whose job it is to execute the change.Perhaps the best place to turn for an explanation of what is meant by stand and deliver is to use a “theatre company” metaphor (O’Brien, 2000).

According to the metaphor an organization can be looked at as a theatre company putting on a continuous stream of performances of a play. Think about it, we get up in the morning, dress in our work costumes, drive to the company (the theatre), walk to our office (the set), and set about acting in our role to meet the objectives (script) of the company. Hopefully, some customers (our audience) applaud during our day’s performance, so that we can go home at night to remove our costumes and be the real “us” again.Organizational change, then, is like a theatre company that decides to “change their play” because they are beginning to see empty seats in their daily performances.

In the theatre business, leadership in the changing of a play comes from the producer (the guy with the money and the idea for the new play) and the director (the gal with the creative vision form bringing the new play to life on the stage).Using this metaphor, stand up and deliver leadership for organizational change comes when the CEO and the leadership team become both the producers and directors of their changed organizational play. The leadership problem that we most often see is the CEO being a producer only, and not providing the visible, hands-on leadership that would be supplied by a director.Stand up and deliver means to be there to direct the transition to the new play, not just supplying the resources and the germ of the new idea and then delegating the direction to others.

Standing up and delivering as a director means to develop a personal vision of the organization as it will need to work after the change, to communicate that vision of the new organizational play and then to work iteratively with the employees as they develop their own roles in response to the vision. The seasoned director knows that it is the interaction between his vision and the actor’s development of their roles that produces the final play.One of the current approaches to leadership that has been the focus of muchresearch since the early 1980s is the transformational approach. Transformational leadership is part of the new leadership paradigm (Bryman, 1992), which gives more attention to the charismatic and affective elements of Leadership.

In a content analysis of ‘Leadership Quarterly’, Lowe and Gardner (2001) found that one-third of the research was about charismatic/transformational leadership. Clearly, transformational leadership has been under study for a long period of time, and even today it occupies a central place in leadership research.;As its name implies, transformational leadership is a process that changes and transforms individuals. It is concerned with emotions, values, ethics, standards and long-term goals, and includes assessing followers’ motives, satisfying their needs, and treating them as full human beings.

It involves an exceptional form of influence that moves followers to accomplish more than what is usually expected of them. It is a process that involves charismatic and visionary leadership. Transformational leadership can be used to describe a wide range of leadership, from very specific attempts to influence followers on a one-to-one level to very broad attempts to influence the entire organisation and even entire cultures. Although the leader in this case plays the pivotal role of precipitating change, followers and leaders are inextricably bound together in the transformation process.

 In order to be a transformational leader one needs to have charisma, in order to influence the workforce. A charismatic leader should be dominant, having a strong desire to influence others, being self-confident and having a strong sense of one’s own moral values (Peter Northouse, 2003).;After twenty years of research Posner ; Kouzes found that people want leaders who are credible. If there’s no credibility there’s no leadership.

The authors state that credibility is the foundation of Leadership. They also, state that there are four characteristics that a leader must have to be credible: honest, forward-looking, competent, and inspiring. They found that when there’s a high degree of credibility you can expect to see the behaviour, such as workers feel pride in telling others they’re part of the organization, workers feeling a strong sense of team spirit. They see their own personal values as consistent with those of the organization and feel attached and committed to the organization and have a sense of ownership of the organization.

;Much has been written about leadership and the qualities that fuel leadership such as intelligence, toughness, determination, credibility, vision, etc. Often left off are the lists softer and more personal qualities, but recent studies have proven that they are equally important. Researchers have proposed a new term called ‘Emotional Intelligence’, and it may well help differentiate the outstanding leaders from the merely adequate ones. Its also helps leaders manage the mood of their organizations.

It makes them self-aware and empathetic. They can read and regulate their own emotions while intuitively grasping how others feel and gauging their organization’s emotional state.;The management literature (and even common sense) suggests that both nature and nurture feed emotional intelligence. Part genetic predisposition, part life experience, and part old-fashioned training, emotional intelligence emerges in varying degrees from one leader to the next, and managers apply it with varying skill.

Wisely and compassionately deployed, emotional intelligence spurs leaders, their people, and their organizations to superior performance; naively or maliciously applied, it can paralyze leaders or allow them to manipulate followers for personal gain.From a scientific (rather than a popular) standpoint, emotional intelligence is the ability to accurately perceive your own and others’ emotions; to understand the signals that emotions send about relationships; and to manage your own and others’ emotions.;You can be a successful leader without much emotional intelligence if you’re extremely lucky and you’ve got everything else going for you: booming markets, bumbling competitors, and clueless higher-ups. If you’re incredibly smart, you can cover for an absence of emotional intelligence until things get tough for the business.

But at that point, you won’t have built up the social capital needed to pull the best out of people under tremendous pressure. The art of sustained leadership is getting others to produce superior work, and high IQ alone is insufficient to that task (John Mayer, 2004).;There are five components to emotional intelligence, self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy and social skill (Daniel Goleman, 2000). Self-awareness is the trait where emotional intelligence actually begins, such leaders are never hesitant to talk about and discuss their weaknesses and it is this attitude that later brings upon a positive change in them as they are able to improve upon their such weaknesses with time.

This helps a leader in bringing about change as he is someone who knows his limitations and he knows when and where he can actually stand-up and deliver for the rest of the workforce and be a motivator for them, i.e. when can he lead by example. Thus he knows which tasks and changes can actually be brought about in an organisation and which ones cannot be.

;The second trait is self-regulation, and that leaders with this trait can control their emotions and impulses better and channel them for good purposes. This brings about an openness to change in their attitude and behavior, and increases their trustworthiness and integrity, and also helps them remain comfortable in ambiguous situations and scenario. And this is what subordinates try to see in their leaders, especially in times of change.;Motivation is perhaps the most important trait and the most obvious one that a leader is judged upon.

It’s the motivation abilities of a leader that gives the sub-ordinates the notion that the leader has a strong drive to achieve. It portrays the optimism of the leader to the followers, such that they know that their leader would still be optimistic when facing failure, so it has to do more with the mind than anything else. It is the positivity of the mind, it emanates from the mind of the leader and leads its way to the minds of the followers.;Empathy is the ability to understand the emotional makeup of other people.

Empathy is the trait that enables a leader to be an expert in building and maintaining talent. It enables him to treat people according to their emotional reactions. This is why he can be successful in getting the most out of the talented people that work under him, it thus makes him a better man manager. He is able to manage and lead people from various different backgrounds and cultures, belonging to various social and economic classes, i.

e. it increases the cross-cultural sensitivity of the leader himself. With the businesses and economies globalizing, leaders have to lead and manage people belonging to different cultures which is the major reason why change management in such a scenario is very difficult, however, if only a leader can empathise with his followers, it makes the job half as difficult as before.;The last trait that comes under emotional intelligence is the social skills of the leader.

It is the proficiency in managing relationships and building networks that leads to effectiveness in leading change. Such a leader is able to find common ground between individuals and situations and scenarios and is able to build rapport. It also improves his persuasiveness and the ability to build and lead teams.;True emotional intelligence is not about manipulating people.

Emotional intelligence means knowing what you and others are feeling and acting ethically, with a social conscience. Leaders with higher EQ seem to have “it” together; they are a graceful balance of intellect and emotion. They inspire, lead, and make others feel good about themselves while maintaining their own integrity and sense of personal worth. No one is diminished by being in their presence.

;Leaders with emotional intelligence have an unshakable confidence in themselves, which comes from self-knowledge and self-honesty. They know that their personal happiness is up to them and no one else. Instead of labeling other people and their actions, they check their emotions first. People with emotional intelligence look out for their well being as well as that of others.

They understand that life is not just about them; it’s about balance. Emotional intelligence is necessary for leadership but not sufficient. Many people have some degree of emotional intelligence and can indeed empathize with and rouse followers; a few of them can even generate great charismatic authority. But I would argue that if they are using emotional intelligence solely to gain formal or informal authority, that’s not leadership at all.

They are using their emotional intelligence to grasp what people want, only to pander to those desires in order to gain authority and influence. Leadership couples emotional intelligence with the courage to raise the tough questions, challenge people’s assumptions about strategy and operations—and risk losing their goodwill. It demands a commitment to serving others; skill at diagnostic, strategic, and tactical reasoning; the guts to get beneath the surface of tough realities; and the heart to take heat and grief. A leader gets into trouble when there’s dissonance between the inside and outside – what today we’d call a “disconnect.

” If a single theme runs through this issue, it’s the importance of keeping the two aligned. Every leader ought to want a more supple emotional intelligence, and “Leading by Feel” is a great place to begin. For followers to recognize their leader as he really is may be as difficult as it is for him to understand them completely. Some of the worst difficulties in relationships between superiors and subordinates come from misperceiving reality.

So much of what we understand in the world around us is coloured by the conceptions and prejudices we start with. My view of my employer or superior may be so coloured by expectations based on the behaviour of other bosses that facts may not appear in the same way to him and to me. Many failures of leadership can be traced to oversimplified misperceptions on the part of the worker or to failures of the superior to recognize the context or frame of reference within which his actions will be understood by the subordinate.  4.

     Case StudyThe case study I referred to for this dissertation is “General Electric’s Two-Decade Transformation: Jack Welch’s leadership”. The reason why I opted for this case was because it involved someone of the likes of Jack Welch, who is arguably the most admired CEO’s ever especially when we speak of leadership in context of change. He is the one who transformed GE into a multi-billion dollar company, an industry in its own context.;Long regarded as the bellwether of American management practices, GE was constantly undergoing change.

By the 1950s, GE had delegated responsibility to hundreds of department managers leading a trend towards greater decentralization.;Reg Jones, Welch’s predecessor, became CEO in 1973, he took the company to a totally different level. He was voted CEO of the year 3 times by his peers during the 1970s, with one leading business journal dubbing him CEO of the decade in 1979. The Wall Street Journal proclaimed Jones a management legend,” adding that by handing the reins to Welch, GE had “replaced a legend with a live wire”.

 And so it was, Welch came to the fore front, as the CEO of the largest company in the world at the age of 45, trying to fill in the boots of someone of the likes of Reg Jones, this could never have been easy, but he proved to be even better than what people had anticipated. And if that didn’t make his job difficult, the fact that when he became CEO in 1981, the US economy was in recession, certainly did. He challenged each one of his employees to be better than the best and set in motion a series of changes that were to radically restructure the company in the next five years. Welch was thinking of the long-term impacts of decisions that he was making on that particular day and this is one of the most important factors and abilities a good leader has, he is able to interpret and infer situations and analyse their long-term affects and impacts.

 Early in his career he established a very basic theory for all the businesses that GE had at that point in time, and this theory was to fix, sell or close. He wanted that particular sector of GE to occupy the #1 or #2 spot in the global market or to disengage operations. He thus wanted the entire General Electric to be at its very best and not that some departments and sectors progressed and the rest lagged behind. Another important change that he brought early on during his tenure was that he initiated a highly disciplined destaffing process, he removed people who were employed at certain designations which according to Welch were not necessary:”We don’t need the questioners and checkers, the nitpickers who bog down the process….

Today, each staff person has to ask, “How do I add value? How do I make people on the line more effective and competitive?” He also made radical changes to GE’s formal processes. The laborious strategic planning system was scrapped and replaced by “real time planning”. The budgeting process was equally radically defined.;He also eliminated the sector level managers, sub-sector managers and the department managers thereby reducing the no.

of layers or the hierarchy from 9 to as few as 4 in order to maximize efficiency and to keep things directly under his own supervision.;Through downsizing, destaffing and delayering, he was able to eliminate 59,290 salaried and 64,160 hourly positions between 1981 and 1988. Welch also replaced 12 of his 14 business heads in 1986, the new team consisted of managers with a strong commitment to the new management values, this wa an effort he made to break away from the old GE culture. This would prove to be a very important step for Welch, he wanted individuals who could learn to welcome change rather than resist it.

By the late 1980s, most of GE’s business restructuring was complete, but the organization was still reeling from culture shock and management exhaustion. But Welch was even more eager to rebuild the company a more solid foundation. He said: “By mid 1988 the hardware was basically in place. Now it was time to focus on the organization’s software” According to Welch a company could boost productivity by restructuring, removing bureaucracy and downsizing, but it cannot sustain high productivity without cultural change, hence he wanted to emphasize upon changing the mind-sets and the approach that his workers had.

 Welch along with a colleague James Baughman developed the idea of a forum where employees could not only speak their minds about how their business might be run more effectively. This way he was able to induce more energy into his workforce and make them felt like they were all part of a family. It also improved communication within the organization .The two also sketched a major change initiative they called “Work-out” a process designed to remove any unnecessary bureaucratic work out of the system.

This was again an effort to introduce more flexibility into GE’s organizational structure. With the concept of Globalization being introduced and growing gradually during that period of time, he changed his corporate strategy. He now wanted the businesses to compete at being the #1 or #2 at the world level. In order to do so more easily and effectively he struck deals with various organizations, operating in different parts of the world.

This way GE found an easier way to lead up its way at the top on a global scale. Soon, GE’s global revenues were growing at three times the rate of domestic sales. All this was mainly the result of Welch’s supreme leadership skills and accurate decision making. Welch was also a great man manager, he not only new which person to hire for which designation, he was good at assessing a person’s intellectual abilities, especially in periods where GE was undergoing transitions.

He hired and fired a lot of people during his tenure, but he made sure that GE only moved to greater heights than what it had already accomplished. While the global thrust and the new cultural initiatives were being implemented, Welch was also focussing on the huge task of realigning the skills sets-and, more important, the mindsets of the company’s 290,000 employees with GE’s new strategic and organizational imperatives. Amidst the grumbling of those who felt overworked in the new demanding environment and the residual distrust left over from the layoffs of the 1980s, he recognized his challenge was nothing short of redefining the implicit contract that GE had with its employees. He went on to say that: “The new psychological contract, if there is such a thing , is that jobs at GE are the best in the world for people willing to compete.

We have the best training and the best development resources and an environment committed to providing opportunities for personal and professional growth.” Like all GE managers, Welch grew up in an organization deeply committed to developing its people. He wanted to harness that tradition and use it to translate his broad cultural changes down to the individual level. Another positive aspect of his leadership was that he treated his sub-ordinates as individuals and he knew exactly how to tackle each single one of them.

GE had a total of approximately 3000 executives out of which 500 were appointed by the consent of Welch, which goes to show his involvement in the organization and his man management skills. And since he was personally involved in the promoting individuals, he had an eye to identify potential leaders. He started programs to train individuals who were expected to be potential leaders for GE, these new leaders would then be aligned to GE’s new vision and cultural norms. Welch himself participated in these programs and made sure that things went as planned.

According to Welch:”In our view, leaders whether on the shop floor or at the top of our businesses, can be characterised in atleast 4 ways. The first is one who delivers on commitments-financial or otherwise- and shares the values of our company. His or her future is an easy call. Onward and upward.

The second type of leader is one who does not meet commitments and does not share our values. Not as pleasant a call, but equally easy. The third is the one who misses commitments but shares values. He or she get a second chance, preferably in a different environment.

” He also gave equal importance to the feedback he received from the employees, especially on matters involving change. Jack Welch introduced a 360 degree feedback process, in which every employee was graded by his or her manager, peers and all sub-ordinates on team-building, quality focus, and vision. He also laid down the basis for his vision of integrated diversity. He revolutionised GE into a boundaryless company, one characterised by an open, anti-parochial environment, friendly towards the seeking and sharing of new ideas, regardless of their origins-in many ways an institutionalisation of the openness “Work-out” had initiated and “best practices” transfers had reinforced.

Describing his barrier-free vision for GE, Welch wrote: “The boundaryless company we envision will remove the barriers among engineering, manufacturing, marketing, sales, and customer service; it will recognise no distinctions between domestic and foreign operations-we’ll be as comfortable doing business in Budapest and Seoul as we are in Louisville and Scenectady. A boundaryless organisation will ignore will erase group labels such as management, salaried or hourly, which get in the way of people working together.” He emphasised a lot on the quality of the organisation he would leave to his successor, especially during the last few years of his tenure, while he felt he had assembled a first-class team of leaders at the top of the company, he wanted to continue upgrading the quality deep in the organization. This implied not only raising the bar on new hires but also weeding out all those who did not meet GE’s high standards.

He was best at assessing exactly the type of individuals he required for a particular task, and although GE went through a whole lot of changes, he was able to single out people who were incapable of staying abreast with the change and hence he was able to replace them with fresh and more vibrant talented individual.;According to Welch:”The GE Leader sees his company for what it truly is: the largest Petri dish of business innovation in the world. We have roughly 350 business segments. We see them as 350 laboratories whose ideas are there to be shared, learned and spread as far as we can.

The leader sees that sharing and spreading near the top of his or her responsibilities”.;This emphasises upon the fact that Welch paid a lot of importance to the way workers felt and integrated into the environment of GE. He wanted his sub-ordinates to motivate their sub-ordinates and the process to go on along the hierarchy. He also introduced the idea of having self-belief to achieve the impossible, Welch describes it as:”using dreams to set business targets, with no real idea of how to get there”;He also envisioned GE into sectors and industries which were never their core strengths or their traditional sectors which had been functioning for decades.

GE expanded into various services and today nearly 60% of GE’s profits come from service industries.Even in the final years of his leadership when he was getting close to retirement, he was equally committed, still aiming to add value to GE. And eventually he did when he took measures to ensure that GE implemented and adapted to the growing e-commerce boom. Describing the impact of internet as “the biggest change I have ever seen”, he challenged GE once again to redefine its business model through e-commerce before someone else did.

He defined change as: “Change means opportunity, and this is our biggest opportunity yet”                5.     ConclusionBy analysing and studying various books and journal articles, I have been able to come up with the following plans and strategies that would be vital for any organization and its leadership undergoing change. Organizations need to change their functioning and way in which they conduct their business and services. The reason behind these changes might be external forces in economy, needs of customer or marketplace.

These changes would affect whole organization and it can be known from level of opposition of leadership and employees. Employees, in general, oppose change because they are insecure about loss of control by change. Lots of insecurities are being created due to change affecting the status quo. People are used to working in a particular laid down manner since long.

 On the other hand change requires hard work and a positive attitude. If there had been bad experience in past due to change, then that may act as a catalyst, in this regards. Also if the leadership ad the organisation does not ensure that the change is implemented well and changes are forced upon people without any valid explanations, then the outcome could be very negative. Leaders need to recognise the fact that they can only build loyalty to change by reducing conflict.

Leaders need to disseminate as much information about the change as possible and let people know why the change was necessary, hence, reducing the resistance by providing obvious picture of change. In other words, engaging people in this process and informing them regularly. Leaders need to make sure change is brought about in phases, i.e.

it is implemented step by step, planned and estimated. All leaders need to ensure that they reduce disruption through efficient planning. Leadership at every level should express their own dedication to the change, i.e.

leaders themselves need to stand up and deliver and execute change themselves. At the same time employees also need to be appreciated and rewarded for their involvement in change process and their dedication. As a leader, one important thing is to study present culture of the organization and to know where you are. It is also necessary for a leader to identify employees who want change and those who are not happy with change.

Take example from existing model that has effectively implemented change and also communicate with them regarding their experience with change. Don’t completely change existing culture immediately, but take advice from people about ways to implement the change and methods to solve the problems while implementation. Vision may help you in change, but this is not the only way.;Bringing about change in an organisation is a very hectic task and it requires dedication from both ends, the leadership and the followers.

Leaders need to be aware of what is the current situation of areas and departments where changes have taken place by involving persons who will be in charge of the results. Analyze the conditions with the representatives. Indulge in strategic planning that leads towards success after change in organization. Continue activities with involvement of employees that will help in solving problems and also in improvement of change process.

Finally measure, examine and estimate the change.Another important tool in ensuring effective transformation is collaboration and good communication, which is essential and plays a vital role in process. All processes, practices and functionalities give more values to customer, goals and performance for achievement of goals. There should be internal solutions.

Horizontal, Vertical and multi directional interaction must be carried out before change in organization.Summing upTo become a leader, one has to develop a vision, be able to communicate that vision, and inspire the group one works with to achieve it. One must have credibility, or has to build that credibility before he can lead. One does not need to compromise his honesty, and be competent in whatever he does and be aware (forward-looking).

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Cite this Leadership in context of change management

Leadership in context of change management. (2017, Mar 17). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/leadership-in-context-of-change-management/

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