The purpose of this paper is to provide a brief historical perspective of leadership and management theories in the twentieth century to demonstrate that those theories are still prevalent today and underpin the latest “revolutionary” leadership models.
Research carried out by AQR Ltd, a provider of assessment products, and a team from the University of Hull headed by Dr Peter Clough looked to map a leader's style as a tool for matching it to organizational requirements. This research was carried out with support from the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM). The research included a review of existing leadership models and primary data collection from nearly 2,000 practicing leaders and managers.
The data collected were analyzed to produce six dimensions that form the Integrated Leadership Measure (ILM72), which represents different types of management behavior: task v. person; flexible v. dogmatic; de‐centralized v. centralized; reward v. punishment; the means v. the end; and structured v. organic. The research found that how a particular leader behaves at any time in any situation depends on their personal preferences, but also on the organization and its culture. The research also identified three global values that people want from their leadership: determination to deliver; individual cohesion; and team cohesion.
Training and development activities can be used to help people become more effective leaders, however if the organization limits their ability to use this learning they will become frustrated. Leadership style and organizational requirements need to be aligned.
The author suggests that there is very little new in terms of leadership ideas; the challenge of today and the future is to adapt leadership styles to fast changing business environments.
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