The complex issue of management has always been under a deep research, and many people have tried to solve it, but their works were scattered and for a long time have not constituted a generalized theory.
Only in the second half of the last century the situation has changed dramatically after the industrial revolution victory in the West. Market-oriented relations owned all spheres of society. The major companies were formed requiring a large number of senior and middle level personnel who could make rational decisions and knew how to deal with large masses of people. Therefore, high professionalism from the workers and the competence and ability to tailor their activities to the existing laws were required. As the result a group of people with specific managerial activities were formed, called managers.
Currently, there are at least a minimum of different characteristics inherited by the modern manager. Today the companies have grown so much that sole control has become almost impossible. In addition, managers have been added a lot of external functions, including interaction with partners, trade unions, government and political leaders. Each direction is run by a separate manager, so the head of the corporation became a master-manager and organizer whose primary responsibilities are oriented at the coordination of the other manager’s activities.
The theory of leadership comes from the ability to define a universal set of leadership qualities (physical, psychological, intellectual and personal) that allow a person to create groups of followers. This theory provides basically the deification of leaders, but it does not explain the success of a leader with a different set of qualities.
The theory of leadership reflects the earliest approach to the study and explanation of leadership. The first studies have tried to identify the characteristics that distinguish the great men in the history. The researchers believe that the leaders had a unique set of stable qualities that did not change over time. On this basis, the researchers sought to determine leadership qualities, learn how to measure them and use them to identify the leaders. This approach was based on the belief that leaders are born, not made.
Subsequent studies led to the isolation of the following four categories of leadership qualities: physical, psychological, intellectual and personal.
Pleasant appearance (face, height, shape, weight), voice, good health, high efficiency, energy, representativeness
Type of personality: extrovert, introvert. Temperament: phlegmatic, sanguine, choleric. Authoritativeness, ambition, aggression, dominance, balance, independence, courage, creativity, creativity, assertiveness, perseverance, courage
A high level of intelligence: intelligence, logic, memory, intuitive, encyclopedic knowledge, breadth of vision, insight, originality, speed of thinking, education, prudence, conceptual, sense of humor
Business skills: organization, discipline, reliability, diplomacy, thrift, flexibility, commitment, initiative, independence, responsibility, risk-taking. Personal qualities: kindness, tact, compassion, honesty, decency, alertness, confidence, alertness, sociability
The theory of the great people claim that a person who has a certain set of personality traits is going to be a good leader regardless of the nature of the situation in which one is at. If this theory is correct, then there must be some key personality traits that make a person a great leader and an outstanding leader.
Trying to find those key personnel traits, psychologies held a number of special studies. Surprisingly, it was found that very few personality traits are directly related to leadership effectiveness, and found the relationship is usually quite weak.
Here are some of the relationships found between the individual personal characteristics and leadership.
- Leaders tend to have slightly higher intelligence than their followers. But not by much. Candidate for the leadership in any case can not be separated from the average intellectual level of his followers.
- Many leaders are driven by a strong desire for power. They have a strong focus on self person, care about prestige, ambition, excess energy. Such leaders are generally better prepared socially, show greater flexibility and adaptability. Love of power and the ability to intrigue help them to stay "afloat" for a long time.
- The study of historical records showed that among the 600 known most famous monarchs were either very high moral or extremely immoral people only.
- There is a slight positive correlation between the height of a person and the likelihood that he/she will become the leader of the group. Thus, almost all elections in the United States won a high candidate, with the exception of only two cases. In 1992, Bill Clinton was about 4 inches (10 cm) above George W. Bush. In 1996, he was only half an inch (about
1.5 cm) above the Robert Dole. It can be argued that the tall man a little more likely to become a leader, but we should not forget that the greatest leaders were Napoleon, Hitler, Lenin, Stalin, and many others who were not tall at all.
Oddly enough, there is very little evidence that traits such as charisma, courage, and a tendency to dominate or self-confidence are the performance indicators of human activity as a leader.
Hence, some modest relationship between personal characteristics and leadership skills can still be detected, but in general it is very difficult to predict how a person is a good leader solely on the basis of ones personality traits. Therefore, over time, the researchers were inclined to the opinion that it is insufficient to consider only some personality traits. It is necessary to take into account the situation in which these traits are manifested. This does not mean that the individual characteristics do not affect the chances of becoming a leader. It is just important to observe the person's personality as well as the character of the situation in which he or she has to play a leadership role. According to this view, a person to become an effective leader does not have to be a "great man". Rather, he/she needs to be the right man in the right place and at the right time.
The specificity of functions of a leader changes due to the peculiarities of a group, which he/she directs.
The leader as an administrator Regardless of whether he himself develops the main directions of business policy or they are prescribed to him from above, the scope of his responsibility is consistently ranked surveillance function of the execution, and the essence of administrative functions is not independent performance of work, but the delegation of it to the group members.
Sometimes an individual, being in the role of administrator, suffers from its inability to shift some of the responsibility and authority to others, it seems to him that his personal involvement is necessary. As a result, it deprives subordinates a sense of responsibility and prevents their involvement in the work of the group.
The leader as a planner
The leader often assumes the duties of the developer of methods and means by which the group reaches the goals. This function may include the definition of immediate steps, as well as developing of long-term business plans.
The leader as a politician
One of the most important functions of a leader is to set goals and the main line of group behavior. Definition of group goals and methods of achieving them is a mandatory feature of the leader.
The leader as the group representative in the external environment
The leader of the group is an official acting in the environment on behalf of all. Therefore, members of the group do not care who and how they will be, a leader in this case identifies all members of a group, their collective wisdom, will, etc.
The leader as a regulator of relations within the group
In some groups, all information passes through the leader, sometimes in a group, there are close to the leader of a person that
close to the network itself, there is a type of group where the leader is "one of all."
The leader as a source of rewards and punishments
A particularly important factor in terms of a member of the group, is a system of rewards and punishments, which the leader uses to monitor the activities of the group members. This feature makes high demands on the personal qualities of a leader, especially in groups where more attention is not paid to the material and moral factors. The leader must know the motivation of each individual member of the group to tailor the force of impact of incentives in relation to each of the group members.
The leader as a role model
In some types of group leader can serve as a model of behavior for the rest of the group, providing them with a clear indication of who they should be and what they should do.
The leader as a symbol of the group The leaders, being the core of a group,
begins to perform the function of a symbol: their names are assigned throughout the movement, in particular the industrial world business owners themselves engage in such symbolization, considering his work as an extension of their personality, religious groups and sects continue to be named its founders very long time, etc.
Nevertheless, in each group he/she leads there are specific roles a leader has to perform during the relation and communication process:
First, it is a coordinator role, connecting one group to another and simplifying the dialogue between them. This role (image and representation to the external world) can actually play the nominal head of the firm, who provides activities and inspires people to achieve the objectives of the firm. He is a communicator, which creates the possibility of reliable continuous contact between the employees.
Secondly, it is the role of the informer, providing reception, transmission and processing of various types of information. He is a representative, explaining the meaning and nature of the problems to other departments or partners.
Thirdly, it is the role connected to the adoption of decisions, played by entrepreneurs seeking new ways to achieve the goals and taking full responsibility for the risks associated with them.
Manager should be a man of principle, be able to withstand the pressure of a "top" and "bottom", consistently and stand firmly on what he thinks is right for the company and its people. He should not conceal his views and must defend to the end the values that he profess, and helps others to accept these values by his own example.
Good health is an important personal quality for managers, which generates energy and vitality and helps them to cope with stress. Constant training and balancing of workloads are needed to maintain good physical health. However, a physical health for a manager is not enough. He should be emotionally healthy, otherwise he will not be able to cope with fast changing environment around him in an organization.
A manager should ahead of time form positive emotions within himself: compassion making a person a human being, excitement stimulating activity, interest and curiosity helping move forward and develop new directions and confidence that adds solidity.
Management decision making requires managers more than just professional skill, but also the emotional maturity, which is expressed in the ability and willingness to deal with an acute situation, do not create the tragedy of a defeat, that are inevitable in the life of any manager.
The modern managers must actively fight against their own shortcomings, create a positive attitude to life and work as well as a "healthy" environment through the promotion and education of people by opening their abilities and talents, without the fear of losing credibility in most cases employees pay back with recognition and gratitude.
Another group of qualities that are essential to any manager are professional skills and abilities. It is competence system of specialized knowledge and practical skills. First of all, a modern manager sets a good knowledge of reality, both internal and external, understands the goals of the company and its units, he has an ability to see the problems, and be receptive to innovations and changes. This is not possible without the ability to analyze a situation, create and critically evaluate the various plans and programs, make decisions, take responsibility for their implementation.
However, the manager must not only be well-prepared and highly educated, but also creative. It is required not only to believe in their creativity, but also to value these abilities in others, to be able to mobilize and use them in other people, overcoming all the obstacles along the way. Managers must be persistent, feel the need for change, be brave enough to break useless tradition and accept new ideas and innovative solutions.
Creativity is impossible without the ability to find information and share it with employees, listen to others, regardless of who they are, seek feedback, do not retreat from whatever threatens the settled view of the world, and question everything , understand the position of others, and everywhere find people that will be of any interest for the company.
But the most important for the manager is to be quick on the uptake, to link the newly acquired knowledge with the old, have the skill and the ability to learn at work and outside of it, increase competence, and avoid onesided specialization. This process usually begins with the first day of being a manager and never stops.
Another group of managerial skills that define a manager are the organizational and business skills.
They reflect the level of organizational culture of a manager and the level of knowledge of management technology. Dedication or commitment to work is of the organizational qualities that is a must for any manager. The nature of modern life requires the manager to set clear and reasonable goals. Without them, he may lack the firmness and determination, miss a good opportunity and simply waist time. The world changes every day, and to stay afloat the manager should adjust these goals. Therefore, true commitment is not only goals setting, it is striving and working hard to achieve them. This is what distinguishes the manager from the other workers.
Another organizational quality that should be inherent in managers is efficiency. It is the ability to accurately and timely set goals, make decisions, monitor their performance, and be prompt in administrative actions if needed.
Managers must be disciplined and have self-control. They will neither be able to discipline others or monitor their activities without it. Therefore, the manager must control their emotions and feelings, explore the emotions of others and control the discipline of the subordinates.
A distinctive feature of a manager should be improved efficiency the ability to work hard, however, without becoming a workaholic.
Another important feature of a manager is realism. He should be able to correctly evaluate his own capacity, and capacity of his employees and their actions.
A good manager is characterized by healthy optimism and confidence. It is impossible to manage people without confidence. People with confidence know exactly what they want. They never use the roundabout ways. Their views on the problems always crisp and clear, and they strive to ensure that all of these views are known, and therefore they are free to express their point of view, seeking to be heard and understood, but at the same time they respect others and their opinions.
A good manager must be able to ensure the involvement of other employees into the work. To encourage people to do the work it is important to convert any even the most boring job in an exciting game, look for innovative approaches and flavor their actions with a certain degree of adventurism for a greater appeal.
The most import is that a manager should have the ability to lead, organize and support the work of the team and be ready to take actions and risks. He should be able to act independently of higher management, encourage people to obey, get rid of the ballast, and more importantly do not press other people down under himself. To do this, the manager must have a tolerance for human weakness and intolerance to anything that hampers the successful tackling of problems by the team.
It is a good trait to strive for perfection, but there is always something to keep in mind a manager with a universal abilities and skills that is equally effective in any action and situation simply does not exist.
- Трэйси Б., Шеллен Ф. Личность лидера. – М., 2010
- Максвелл Д. 21 обязательное качество лидера. – М., 2004