Leadership: Definition, Ethics, Role and Qualities


Leadership refers to the ability of an executive to direct, guide and influence others. In order for them achieve specific goals. A manager’s ability to inspire subordinates to work with confidence, enthusiasm and passion is called leadership. Leadership is the ability to influence others’ behavior. Leadership can also be define as the ability to influence others towards achieving a goal. Leaders must develop future visions and motivate their team members to reach those visions. Leadership in business refers to the ability of a company’s leadership to set and achieve difficult goals. Take quick and decisive action when necessary, outperform their competition and inspire others to do the same.

When we compare and contrast followership and servant leadership we can better appreciate the relationship between the styles.

What is leadership?

Keith Davis says that leadership is the ability to convince others. To pursue a set of goals enthusiastically. It is the human factor that binds groups together and motivates them towards achieving their goals.

It can be hard to assign a value to leadership and other aspects of a company’s business. As opposed to quantitative metrics that are easily tracked and easier to compare between companies. Leadership can also refer to a holistic approach. This could include the tone that a company’s leadership sets and the culture that the company establishes.

People with strong leadership skills can rise to the top of the corporate world. Such as CEO (chief executive officers), COO (chief operational officer), CFO [chief financial officer), president and chair.

There are many ways to be a leader. The first is to show others how to do it and coach them. Another option is to delegate tasks based on the skills and experience of others. Another is to direct others from an authoritative position. A leader who is supportive of others and helps them achieve their goals can be a great leader.

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Leadership Characteristics

A leader must possess several characteristics. These include being able to motivate people, trustworthiness, competence. Also include decisiveness and selflessness in understanding the goals of the organization or team.

  1. It’s an inter-personal process where a manager influences and guides workers to achieve their goals.
  2. It is a sign that a person has a few characteristics, such as intelligence, maturity, and personality.
  3. It’s a group activity. It involves interaction between two or more people.
  4. Leaders are responsible for shaping the behavior of the group toward achieving organizational goals.
  5. Leadership is dependent on the situation. There is no one best way to lead. All it takes is to deal with the situation.
Leadership importance

Leadership is an essential function of management that helps maximize efficiency and achieve organizational goals. These points are just a few of the reasons leadership is so important in any concern.

  1. Initiates action- A leader is someone who initiates the work by communicating the plans and policies to subordinates. This is the place where the actual work begins.
  2. Motivation- The leader plays an incentivizing role in the company’s success. He motivates employees by offering them non-economic and economic rewards, and thus gets work from his subordinates.
  3. Guidance – Leaders must not only oversee but also guide their subordinates. This refers to giving instructions to subordinates on how to do their job effectively and efficiently.
  4. Confidence- This is a key factor in building confidence. Subordinates can communicate their work to you, explain their roles and give them guidance to reach the goals. Employees should be heard about their problems and complaints.
  5. Building morale
  6. This is the willingness to work with your employees and gain their trust. Leaders can boost morale by encouraging employees to work together and achieving their goals.
  7. Manages the work environment – This is how you get things done. A productive work environment is essential for stable and sound growth. Leaders should remember to consider human relations. He should be able to make personal contact with his employees, listen to their problems, and then solve them. He should be compassionate with employees.
  8. The best way to achieve co-ordination is to reconcile personal and organizational goals. This can be achieved by effective and efficient co-ordination, which should be the primary motivation of a leader.
Leadership ethics

Ethics is the ideal and acceptable values and morals that are held by an individual or society. Ethics are concerned with the purity and intentions of people. The guidelines of ethics can be used to analyze “what is good and what is not” in a particular situation. We can relate ethics to leadership by pointing out that ethics is all about the leader and his role.

Two main aspects of ethical theories of leadership are: (a) Leaders’ actions and behaviors; and (b) Leaders’ personality and character. “Ethics” are essential for leadership. Leaders inspire and motivate their subordinates/followers to reach a common goal. This could be in the case of teamwork, organizational quest or any other project. The leader must treat his subordinates with respect, as each person is unique. This is an ethical responsibility. Leaders are responsible for creating and maintaining an ethical environment within an organization. They also have influence over the development of organizational values.

These are the traits and characteristics that make a leader ethical and effective:

Respect: He shows respect for others. A leader who is ethical should not allow his followers to become his means of achieving his goals. So respect their opinions, decisions and values. Respecting your followers means listening to them and being open to hearing their opinions. Hence it means treating followers with respect and authenticity.

Serving others: He helps others. A leader who is ethical should put the interests of his followers before his own. He must be compassionate. He should be kind and helpful to his followers.

Justice: He is just and fair. A leader who is ethical must treat his followers equally. Personal bias should not be allowed. Thus if followers are treated differently by others. The grounds for differential treatment must be fair, clear and based on morality.

Building community:

He builds it. A leader who is ethical considers both his own and the needs of his followers. And works to achieve their goals. He pays attention to the needs of his community. Thus he respects the intentions of his followers. He is more committed to the community’s goals.

Honesty: He is honest and loyal. Honesty is essential for being an ethical leader. Honest leaders are trustworthy and can be relied on. These leaders are always respected by their followers. Thus honest leaders are honest and open about the facts and circumstances. Regardless of how negative or harmful they may seem. He doesn’t misrepresent any fact.

It is important to remember that leadership is about values. Without a concern for your personal values and awareness. Thus it is difficult to be a leader. Leadership is characterize by a moral and ethical component. These ethics define leadership. These traits can be use by leaders to influence their behavior.

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The Role of a Leader

Leaders are able to think strategically and simplify the strategy for everyone within the organization. They can also communicate the strategy clearly, enthusiastically and with care. A leader is someone who can influence, motivate and support others to achieve organizational success. So leaders are distinguished from managers by their ability to inspire and influence others, not by their power or control.

The Leaders are people who see the potential for improvement and can rally others to work towards that goal. However leaders are able to make their vision a reality and put people first. It’s not enough to be able to motivate people. Leaders must also be empathetic and able to connect with others to succeed. Thus leaders don’t need to be from the same backgrounds or follow the same path. Future leaders will be more diverse which allows for a wider range of perspectives.

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These are the key roles of a leader within an organization:
  1. All levels are required – Leadership is an important function at all levels. It is essential for obtaining co-operation. When forming plans and policies. It is essential for the interpretation and execution by the top management of plans and programs. The guidance and counseling of subordinates is a way to exercise leadership during execution of plans.
  2. Representative of the organization – A leader, also known as a manager. It is refer to as the representative of an enterprise. At conferences, seminars, and general meetings. He represents the concern. His job is to explain the business to the outside world. He also represents the department he heads.
  3. Integrates and reconciles personal goals with organizational objectives. Leaders with leadership qualities help in reconciling/integrating employees’ personal goals with organizational goals. He tries to coordinate the efforts of all people in order to achieve common goals. He must be able to influence others and encourage them to cooperate and achieve the goals.
  4. He seeks out support
  5. A leader can be described as a manager or a person who invites the support and cooperation of his subordinates. So he can achieve this by his intelligence, maturity, and experience, which can lead to positive results. Leaders must be open to suggestions and, if possible, implement them into the plans and programs of their enterprise. He can then solicit the full support of his employees. Which leads to a willingness to work and, therefore, effectiveness in running a concern.
  6. Leaders must be friend, guide and philosopher. A leader can be a friend by sharing his feelings, opinions, and desires with employees. He can also be a philosopher, using his knowledge and experience to guide the employees when and where necessary. As a guide, he can supervise and communicate with employees the policies and plans of the top management. Hence to ensure their cooperation in achieving the company’s goals. He can sometimes also be a counselor, offering counseling and problem-solving. He can listen and help employees solve their problems.
Leadership qualities

Leaders have multidimensional characteristics that make them attractive and efficient in their behavior. These are the characteristics that make a leader a great leader.

  1. Physical appearance – Leaders must be attractive. A leader must be healthy and fit.
  2. Vision and foresight are two of the most important qualities leaders need to have. He must be able to see the future and formulate logical programs.
  3. Intelligence – Leaders should have the ability to see through difficult situations and solve problems. So he should be analytical and be able to weigh the pros and cons of each situation before summarizing it. A positive outlook and mature outlook are important.
  4. Communication skills – Leaders must communicate clearly, accurately and effectively the policies and procedures. So this skill can be a great tool for persuasion or stimulation.
  5. Objective- Leaders must have a fair and objective outlook that is not biased. This does not reflect his willingness to work with a specific person. So he should be able to form his own opinions and must base his judgment on logic and facts.
  6. Knowing the work environment
  7. Leaders should know the work environment of their subordinates in order to win their trust and confidence.
  8. A sense of responsibility – It is essential to have a sense and feel of control over the work of others. Leaders must feel responsible for the organization’s goals. Only then can they maximize their potential. To do this, he must be motivated and have the desire to give his best. Only then can he motivate his subordinates to be their best.
  9. To earn the trust of his subordinates, self-confidence is essential. He must be trustworthy and must show courage in dealing with difficult situations.
  10. Humanist-This is a vital trait for a leader because he interacts with people and has personal contact with them. He must take care of the personal issues of his subordinates. It is important to treat human beings with compassion in order to create a pleasant environment.
  11. Empathy- This is an old saying that says “Stepping into others’ shoes”. This is crucial because it allows for fair judgment and objectivity. Leaders should be able to understand and address the complaints and needs of their employees. Thus it is a way to improve human relations and personal contact with employees.

These qualities are what make a leader a leader. Hence they help us understand the importance of leadership for our business. Leaders cannot possess all the traits. However, a combination of a few traits can help you achieve effective results.



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