Reasons Why Change Is Difficult for Employees and Leadership Essay

Pages: 5 (1552 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 5  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Leadership

Leadership

Yukl (2010) does not oversimplify leadership or its practical application. Instead, Yukl (2010) proposes a multi-linkage model in which the leader has a primary effect on situational variables, which in turn impact members of the team and thereafter, team performance. Among the intervening variables a leader might be able to affect include the effort exerted by subordinates, task structure and organization, and resources available to the team. Other intervening variables include teamwork, cooperation, subordinates' abilities, role clarity within the group, and the ability to coordinate with external units. These intervening variables are what has the most immediate effect on the team's performance. Thus, the leader does not -- in fact cannot -- have a direct impact on the cognitions and behaviors of subordinates. Rather, the leader seeks to change those cognitions and behaviors by altering the situational variables. Altering situational variables can have a strong influence on subordinate motivation, effort, and behavior. Even by influencing the perceived importance of each situational variable (such as cooperation or coordination), the leader can positively impact group performance. According to Yukl (2010), a leader can influence any of these intervening variables directly or indirectly.

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Ways in which the leader influences the intervening variables range from actually changing the structure of teams, thereby impacting temporarily the organizational culture. or, the leader might determine the need to boost employee training in order to improve the skills necessary for success. Creating programs that enable access to available resources is another method that the leader can use to inspire, motivate, and enhance team performance.

Essay on Reasons Why Change Is Difficult for Employees and Leadership Assignment

The intervening variables and how the leader reacts to those variables will also change over time. This is because the leader understands the need for both short-term and long-term interventions, and when to apply them effectively. For example, in the short-term the leader might address immediate issues and deficiencies that are having an adverse effect on group performance. This stage can be described as addressing the acute needs and symptoms.

The long-term variables are more salient and conducive to successful organizational change, though. Long-term variables include altering the deeply held belief systems of employees, and creating a new and vibrant organizational culture. By impacting the beliefs and values of subordinates, the leader is empowering subordinates to make decisions that reflect organizational goals.

Ultimately, the Yukl (2010) multiple-linkage model offers a realistically complex vision of how leaders can best influence team performance. The only weakness with the Yukl (2010) model is that it is impossible to simplify. Yukl's (2010) model can be best understood within an organizational context.

Explain the basic characteristics of and differences between charismatic and transformational leadership and cite examples of each type of leader.

Charismatic leadership and transformational leadership share in common the dynamic character traits of the leader. In fact, a leader can be both charismatic and transformational, such as Sir Richard Branson. Branson is a media darling who invokes admiration and yet he also empowers employees via a transformational leadership style. Therefore, a certain degree of charisma may be necessary in order to evoke the desired transformation within the organization. A leader must have the ability to inspire subordinates to achieve collective goals by motivating "followers to transcend their own interests for some other collective purpose," (Hay n.d.).

By their very definition, transformational leaders inspire trust, respect, and admiration, which is why they are able to succeed. However, a transformational leader does not bank on charisma alone. Charismatic leaders tend to rely almost exclusively on their dynamic personalities as primary catalysts for change. They can therefore fall pray to narcissism and ultimately worry about their own personal achievements. A charismatic leader's concern for short-term gains such as approval and social alliance can blur the importance of more critical components of organizational success such as teamwork and collaboration.

Charismatic leaders can articulate a uniquely optimistic vision, which is what helps inspire subordinates. Their communications style reflects self-confidence, and charismatic leaders also have a remarkable ability to persuade via effective rhetorical strategy. Charismatic leaders operate on the principle of modeling, expecting subordinates to model their own behaviors and belief systems after those espoused by the leader.

Yukl (2010) expresses some of the potential weaknesses in charismatic leadership. For one, the charismatic leader may be unrealistically optimistic and falsely self-confident. Similarly, a charismatic leader might ignore or downplay problems that need to be addressed because to recognize problems would mean not being able to rely on unbridled optimism as a means of inspiring employees. This lack of critical awareness prevents the leader from inspiring effective change. A charismatic leader does not necessarily think about contingencies, and does not share power well. The development of leadership successors is hindered also by the charismatic leader's intense self-absorption and self-championship.

Transformational leaders achieve organizational goals by helping each subordinate to shine. They "pay attention to and are sensitive to the needs of their subordinates as well as their own needs," (Lim n.d.). Transformational leaders might have a great deal of charisma but they also empower subordinates to become leaders in their own right. The ability to delegate authority and empower often occurs via intervening variables such as helping employees shift their belief and value systems. Transformational leadership entails establishing a collective consciousness within the team that inspires each and every member to participate and achieve.

Outline reasons why change is difficult for employees and leadership. Describe five key steps in developing a functional change team and discuss how any of the steps might need to be changed if you were creating a virtual team.

Change is difficult for individuals and perhaps even more so for organizations. Yukl (2010) emphasizes the need for strong leadership to motivate organizational change and provide support during times of change. Change often entails the transformational of organizational values, culture, and goals. Employees who have been with an organization for long periods of time will find change for difficult than those who are rookie members of the team. Old and established organizations will naturally be more resistant to change than younger ones, but paradoxically more in need of change. Organizational change may involve changing the actual symbols of the organization, from its branding to its social rituals to its organizational culture as a whole.

Leaders with a strong and well-articulated vision for change are more likely to inspire employees to collectively create the intended goals. A vision is crucial to invoke change. Transformational leaders have the potential to inspire employees to share in the vision, while empowering them to work independently towards the fulfillment of collective goals.

A functional change team can facilitate organizational change. Creating such a change team is a worthwhile process, even if it provides a temporary operational framework. Five key steps in developing a functional change include the following. First, the team needs an effective and if possible transformational leader to head the group and motivate its participants. That leader must have a visionary spirit and the ability to convey the central values guiding the organizational change. Ideally, the leader is highly flexible (Yukl 2008).

Second, Yukl (2002) points out that the change team requires a cohesive and well-articulated vision of change. That vision can be created collectively and adopted over time to account for extraneous variables but there may be core values that remain stable. Third, the functional change team needs role clarity and task delegation. Roles should not be overly rigid but role clarity greatly enhances team performance. Fourth, the leader needs to provide continual support and aid in the creation of a collaborative environment. Subordinates can also be empowered to provide support for fellow teammates. Finally, feedback and monitoring are necessary to measure change results.

In a virtual team, the same five steps are implemented. However, the virtual change team will not have the benefit of frequent face-to-face interactions. A charismatic leader will… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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