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Chapter one


1.1 Background for the Study

For numerous decades, leadership research has been an essential and central component of management and organisational behaviour literature. Indeed, “no other role in organisations has received more interest than that of a leader” (Schwandt & Marquardt, 2000). Organisations around the world are intensely concerned with understanding, seeking, and developing leadership.

Regardless of the type of organisation, leadership is recognised as critical to developing high-performing teams. Leaders have bigger hurdles than ever before as the environment becomes more complicated and the organisation changes.

Looking back in time, it is clear that leaders must be able to effect change in response to environmental pressures. The modern era requires not just a competitive advantage and continued profitability, but also the upholding of ethical standards, compliance with civic obligations, and the creation of a safe and equitable work environment.

Leadership is one of the most important factors in improving organisational effectiveness. Leaders are responsible for the development and implementation of strategic organisational decisions.

They must acquire, develop, and deploy organisational resources optimally in order to produce the finest products and services in the best interests of stakeholders. In short, strong leadership is the primary source of competitive advantage for any organisation (Zhu et al. 2005; Avolio, 1999; Lado et al., 1992; Rowe, 2001).

Leaders are responsible not only for showing ethical behaviour, but also for creating an ethical climate within the organisation. According to Mulki et al. (2006), the ethical atmosphere is a strong predictor of trust in supervisor, job satisfaction, and organisational commitment, while trust in supervisor is an antecedent of job satisfaction and turnover intentions.

According to Lao Tzu (Chinese Philosopher), “A leader is most effective when others are unaware of his existence. When his task is completed, they will say, “We did it ourselves.” Good leaders are made, not born. If one has the drive and the willpower, one can become a successful leader.

A leader is defined as the person who brings life to the organisation and ensures the organization’s stability and persistence in the goals for which it was established; in other words, a capable leader is one who can move the organisation in the direction he envisions and sets.

A leader that possesses specific leadership competencies and skills should be able to change his or her leadership styles and behaviours to meet organisational goals and objectives.

Individual leaders that can influence, motivate, and direct colleagues are frequently rewarded in terms of employee loyalty and performance (Mosadegh & Yarmohammadian 2006).

Good and effective leaders are important not only for the organization’s overall performance and well-being, but also for other stakeholders such as customers and society at large.

In other words, good leadership combines management, psychology, and sociology, to name a few. Many of these studies appear to focus on a single theme: what makes a good leader.

To answer this critical subject, a variety of leadership theories and models have been developed to improve our understanding of this seemingly basic but really complicated topic, particularly in the modern world and organisations.

However, despite the various models and theories proposed, many scholars appear to agree that an effective leader is one who can achieve organisational performance (Mastrangelo, Eddy, & Lorenzet 2004), and in this context, organisational performance can be measured in a variety of ways.

Job satisfaction among employees is one of the most reliable ways to determine if an organisation is performing and hence effective (Robbins, 2009).

Mosadeghrad (2003) defines job satisfaction as employees’ views towards their occupations and the organisations in which they work. In this context, job satisfaction can be viewed as a multidimensional concept that encompasses employees’ thoughts and feelings about rewards, the nature and conditions of their jobs, motivation, their relationships with coworkers, promotion, and supervision.

When employees are content with their jobs, the organisation is said to be effective, and in this case, the success and effectiveness of the organisation and thus its members is linked in part to the role of the leader.

Mosadeghrad contends that managers’ leadership styles, which are defined as a combination of managerial attitudes, behaviours, and skills, have a significant impact on employees’ commitment and productivity, in addition to job satisfaction.

Indeed, Kaltreider (1997) claims that subordinates are strongly influenced by their leaders’ competencies and capabilities, and that this effect enhances or lowers the extent to which leaders lead with honesty, encourage efficiency, and provide channels of contact with subordinates.

Human resource management theorists frequently believe that employees’ knowledge, abilities, and skills will enable them to be successful performers when employed.

Indeed, Pfeffer and Salanciz (1975) argue that organisations should prioritise having a talented and satisfied personnel in order to achieve desirable goals and thrive in a highly competitive environment.

This is because the competences and skills they possess will allow them to demonstrate work behaviours that are suitable and relevant to job performance.

According to the expectation hypothesis (Victor Vroom, 1964), employees are more likely to be productive if their performance is rewarded, as long as the incentive has value to them.

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