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Leadership vs Management: Definitions, Theories And Styles

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Definition of leadership

Management and leadership are two terms that are intertwined. Everyone talks about leadership but few understand it and fewer achieve it. According to Warren Bennis, there are 850 definitions of leadership. Peter Drucker says a leader is a man who just has followers (Drucker, 2006). John C. Maxwell says that leadership is just an influence and nothing more. There are different kinds of leadership theories- Transactional, Transformational, Autocratic, Democratic, Laissez Faire and many more (Maxwell, 2020). The most relevant and commonly used leadership model is the Democratic model. It is also known as the participative leadership procedure (Groysberg and Slind, 2012). An internationally acclaimed company like Apple Inc. is using this model successfully. In this model the leader or leaders let the employees participate in the decision-making procedure. This type of leadership model can be seen from private Organizations to the government. In 1990, John Gastil published an article in a journal where he first gave the framework of democratic leadership. Democratic leaders do not hold onto all the responsibilities themselves. They divide the responsibilities among multiple people who are responsible for a common goal. This maximizes the effort of others to achieve the objective. Democratic leaders usually train their employees in critical and creative decision-making. The democratic leader here works as a facilitator which boosts building good relations among employees and leaders of the company. This style also encourages collaboration and creative thinking.

Changing of leadership theories in the age

 The term "leadership" simply means the ability to lead. The researchers over time have written and rewritten the traits of leadership like a leader needs to be honest, competent, courageous, straightforward, broadminded, and creative. The most used leadership theories were: The Great Man Theory where great men like Mother Teresa, and Abraham Lincoln were simply guided by fate and determined to fulfill their destiny. The Trait Theory supported the proverb "Great leaders are born, not made". This theory just elaborates on the fact that what makes a leader 'great'. Transformational Theory is a bit modern as this theory says leaders communicate with their employees and in the process inspire each other to achieve a goal. This theory first differentiated between management and leadership (Bass, 2019).

In this modern era leadership theories come from the combination of these theories only and now it is called The Democratic Theory of leadership where leaders are great, competent in their work, they know how to take out the end product by their employees and they also maintain a good relationship with their workers. Nowadays the whole leadership is based on the concept that it can be learned, developed, and mastered under proper guidance and circumstances. Nowadays it is thought that anyone can be a leader if they choose a style of leadership best matched their personality.

Definition of Management

Management is a process of an organization that looks after leading, organizing, controlling, and planning for the smooth output of servicing and products. In the process, the work is performed with and through the personnel of the company. 

Difference between leadership and management

There is a very fine line of differences between management and leadership of a company.

  1. leaders do the right thing and managers do the things right for their people. 
  2. Leaders influence relationships between customers and employees whereas management influence authority relationship.
  3. Leaders create changes in companies and managers create stability in the company
  4. Leaders are focused on action and management is focused on the company's philosophy.
  5. Leaders are focused on short-term action and management is focused on the long-term vision of the company.
  6. leadership is focused on the execution of a task and management is focused on the terms and policies of the company.
  7. leaders are focused on innovative ideas and management is a bit conservative for the sake of stability and the brand image of the company.
  8. Leaders generally have a risk-taking mentality and management has a survival instinct (Shani et al., 2021).

How management and leadership are connected

Management and leadership of a company go hand in hand as both of them work for smooth running and growth, maintaining the company's humility, consistency, transparency, and trust. They both work together to unlock their employees' full potential, in some cases, they both need the same level of education and skill, and they both set strategies for the future of the company.

Styles and approaches of leadership: 

Leaders are a necessity in today's globalised world. With the business changing in the modern world, leaders are evolving in their approaches and shifting and thus the approaches and styles of leadership are changing as well. Leaders from the dawn of time have been taking certain decisions and conveying certain actions and after conceptualising those characteristics, numerous leadership behaviours have been formulated. These numerous leadership behaviours have brought out the necessity of numerous leadership styles (Cherry, 2006). These styles of leadership will enable an individual to understand how a leader behaves and how they lead their organisation, and how they direct their employees and teams. The styles and approaches also determine the processes which the leaders use to execute a plan and achieve a goal. The style also determines while executing a plan, how the leaders are holding accountable for their actions to the stakeholders and also their concern for their team members. The categorisation of leaders according to their behavioural styles and approaches is required to conceptualise how they work and what are the factors that influence their decisions (Deshwal and Ali, 2020). The evolution of leadership has resulted in the rise of various styles of leadership ly, Kurt Lewin’s leadership style, Robert Tannenbaum and Warren Schmidt's seven leadership styles, and many more. The seven leadership style of Robert Tannenbaum and Warren Schmidt encompasses a range in which the style evolved from being rigid to full freedom by the leaders. It starts with the leaders strictly instructing the groups about their work, then the leaders will provide a rationale to the group to justify their decisions, then in the third step, the leaders urge their team members to ask questions if they have any. In the fourth step, the leader might consult or propose a decision and then allow the team to provide inputs and draft a final plan. Then the decision-making process becomes a joint venture of the leaders and the team members, and in the last two steps, the leaders will help the team to find solutions, and ultimately it will be the responsibility of the teams to solve the issues, respectively. So, in this approach, it can be seen that a gradual shift of freedom, from total control over the decision-making process by the leaders to providing the teams complete freedom to deal with the issue and solve them (Bass, 2019). 

Kurt Lewin’s Style: 

Another such leadership style or approach of prime importance can be considered Kurt Lewin’s style. Lewin was a psychologist who along with this team determined three basic leadership styles in the year 1939. The three basic leadership styles according to Kurt and his team are the Authoritarian or autocratic style, Participative or the democratic style, and delegative or the laissez-faire style. 

The first type of style here is the authoritarian style. Kurt has explained here that the leaders of the management will possess the central authority and all the powers will emanate from them. The movement of power or authority in this style flows towards the leaders. The decision-making process is completely under the control of the leaders and managers in this style (Zhang and Xie, 2017). The drafting of company or organisation policies, rules, and regulations are done by the leaders alone without consultation from other authorities. The setting of goals and aims of the company and all other issues regarding the company are settled by the leaders or the management here. The employees in this style do not possess any authority, nor are they given space to grow their leadership capabilities. The organisational procedures of various works and tasks are all managed by the leaders. They also control the reward and punishments inside their company (Burnes and Bargal, 2017). The power or authority emanates from them and is generally not shared with other members. For instance, Steve Jobs, the founder and former CEO of Apple was believed to be a classic example of an authoritarian leader. The multinational tech company under the leadership of Jobs followed such a leadership style and the majority of the decisions were taken by the leaders which were deemed as final. The decision-making process was solely undertaken by Jobs and no consultation was held necessary

The participative or democratic style of leadership is another style or approach also spoken by Kurt. In this approach, the leaders have quite a lesser role to play. However, they do take part in the decision-making process but still, they are not deemed as the ultimate and final authority. The importance has been given here to the groups rather than just the leaders. The power in this style is distributed or rather divided between the employees rather than the concentration of power in a single person. Through this, it can be said that the leaders in this style have less power and the subordinates are more empowered. They directly take part in the decision-making procedure. The employees not only participate in taking decisions and drafting policies on the behalf of the company but also share opinions in the rules and regulations process (Northhouse, 2021). Among the other two leadership styles of Kurt, the democratic style has been deemed to be the most effective leadership style as it has been seen to be productive in the organisation and boosts employee performance. For instance, Tim Cook, the CEO of Apple, can be considered a democratic leader. Cook focuses more on the empowerment of the employees and emphasises teamwork. Apple has been receiving better results from this leadership style, as employees with innovative and creative minds can contribute to the growth of the company holistically. The employees under Cook, participate in the decision-making process. The employees contribute to the innovation of unique Apple products that increases the company's competitive advantage in the market. With his visionary mind, Cook encourages his employees and subordinates to participate in the process where decisions are taken on the behalf of Apple. 

The last of Kurt’s three styles of leadership model is the delegative or laissez-faire style. In this model of leadership, the leaders take a back step here and take the role of an observer here. The leaders of the management provide freedom to their subordinates to observe issues and solve them on their own. The freedom that comes with this theory of leadership is almost absolute in the hands of the employees. The employees take decisions for various issues that develop in the organisation. They take part, independently in the decision-making process of the company. The Leaders here observe the role played by their employees and surely intervene if asked for. The laissez-faire will surely offer help if it is asked of them. The leaders here are aware of the power dynamics and are deliberately passing the focus of power to their employees. The leaders according to this theory do not intervene unless asked for. However, some scholars believe that this leadership style has a feature where one can find no real leadership. Most of the duties of the leaders and management are left to the employees. The excessive freedom given to the employees might result in a lack of guidance within the working circle of the organisation. The employees not only take part in deciding for the company but also their decision is doomed final (Skogstad et al., 2007). However, for the final decision, without much participation, the leader is held responsible. This type of leadership theory is seen to be in practice where the majority of the employees are experienced writers and highly educated. Warren Buffet the CEO of Berkshire Hathaway can be held as a leader who follows the theory of the laissez-faire model. He encourages the traits of this model inside his organisations and encourages his employees to be independent while taking decisions. Buffet eliminated the elements of hierarchy and bureaucracy from his company and introduced a more flexible leadership style of laissez-faire(Yang, 2015).

The necessity of business to be dynamic: 

In this modern time, the world is changing and is full of instabilities and shifts. The globalised world requires a system to be fundamentally and essentially flexible so that they can sustain and survive here. The world especially in the post-pandemic period has changed a lot and all aspects of life have been affected by it. The business arena in this post-pandemic globalised world has undergone various shifts and changes. The business of modern times now requires to be dynamic to survive and sustain. The more a business is dynamic the more that business has the chance to sustain and thrive in this world. If a business can respond quickly to the changes of the world and adapt to them then that business might have a chance to continue to thrive. So it can easily be said that business is a dynamic factor that requires evolution to sustain itself in the globalised environment ( Sterman, 2010).

The leadership styles that have been observed during the pandemic (Covid 19) have done pretty well in Covid 19 few strategies have clicked pretty well. Companies that have used the right strategies could come out of the severe situation. Democratic leadership is known to be flourishing during the pandemic, as there was feedback being asked from the democratic leaders. After consideration of the feedback necessary decisions are taken., this leadership is also known to be fostering a high level of creativity. Democratic style of leadership is in sharp contrast to Steve Jobs's Autocratic leadership style (Bhatti et al., 2012). He has emphasized giving importance to higher-level employees' opinions too, before finalizing a decision supported by everyone and as a result in his tenure, Apple has focused on developing its existing products and fostering business along with enriching its employee relationships. According to the achievements that have been observed in the CEO of Walmart Dough, McMillion, where he could achieve all the aims and could emerge as a champion in the coming days. In transformational leadership, the leaders can inspire the employees in overcoming the situations that are being faced during the pandemic. The innovations that have been used by the CEO of Walmart are making the required changes that are necessary for the employees while working in the organization. These strategies will help in making a positive development that is necessary for the organization. When other organizations were finding it difficult in achieving the required numbers that are necessary for the organization. The introduction of the new ideas that have been observed in the transformational leadership demonstrated by him has helped him and his organization sustains in the pandemic. He has the capability of using legitimate power in the organization during Covid 19.

Some of the leaders have failed in the Covid 19 and turned bankrupt due to certain changes that have been observed in the leadership styles. Several; factors have contributed to the factors that had negative effects on the organization and its employees. The norms that were applied by the organization had turned out to have super flopped The major issues that were witnessed in the leadership styles of James Schwartz were autocratic leadership styles that did not work well. All the major decisions were taken by the CEO. In his single authority, he did not ask for any decisions regarding the modifications that are required for the organization. However, there was a huge employee turnover that was witnessed that had a negative impact and then there was less enforcement that could meet the workforce that was present in the company. Thus, there was a major downfall and the organization turned bankrupt and could not come back from the situation that the organization is currently going through. Massive issues have been faced by the CEO of Cici’s pizza William Mitchell. There have been strategies such as the organization not opting for online delivery during the pandemic has been one of the major issues that have been observed. Similarly, autocratic leadership has been displayed by William Mitchell, where the CEO has taken all the major decisions that were involved with the management. Mass layoffs and some poor strategies have been the reason for the failures of this organization during the ongoing pandemic.


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