I was not surprised to discover that conscientiousness was my highest scored dimension, nor that extroversion was my second highest. I scored a fifteen on the questions that comprise the conscientiousness dimension and a twelve on the questions that comprise the extroversion dimension. In addition to taking tests like these in the past with similar results, I also know that these two skill sets are paramount to success at my level. Being able to hold yourself and others accountable, and being able to relate to a diversity of people in doing so, enables one to more easily achieve success and that is especially true in management positions (Herrmann & Nadkarni, 2014). Being relatable enables one to make better and stronger connections, which in turn enables one to motivate and persuade more effectively, which in turn enables one to be more successful in their pursuits (Owens, Kirwan, Lounsbury, Levy, & Gibson, 2013). Studies have also proven that extroversion and conscientiousness specifically are two of the leading indicators of an individual’s potential for success in business management roles (Yang, Kim & McFarland, 2011).
Leaders can make the difference between success and failure. A good leadership is necessary for an organization's survival. This article addresses the importance of leadership and its impact on organizational behavior. Before discussing further, let’s have a broad insight of leadership, management and organizational behavior.
Organizational Behavior (OB) is field of study that investigates the impact that individuals, groups and structure have on behavior within organization. It is the study and application of knowledge about how people act within organizations. It is a human tool for human benefit. It applies broadly to the behavior of people in all types of organizations, such as business, government, schools and services organizations. It covers three determinants of behavior in organizations: individuals, groups, and structure. OB is an applied field. It applies the knowledge gained about individuals, and the effect of structure on behavior, in order to make organizations work more effectively. OB encompasses the core topics of motivation, leadership behavior and power, interpersonal communication, group structure and process, learning, attitude development and perception, change process, conflict, job design and work stress.
While leadership and management are used interchangeably in the workplace, in theory, they are two different concepts. Leadership is about coping with change. It is the ability to influence a group toward the achievement of goals. Leaders establish direction by developing a vision of the future; then they align people by communicating this vision and inspiring them to overcome hurdles. On the other hand, management refers to the functional process of accomplishing the goals of the organization through the help of others. It is the use of authority inherent in designated formal rank to obtain compliance from organizational members. It is about coping with complexity. It brings order and consistency to an organization by drawing up formal plans, designing rigid organizational structures, and monitoring results against the plans. A manager is an individual who is given the responsibility for achieving the goals assigned to him or her as part of the overall goals of the organization and who is expected to get the job done. Organizations need both strong leadership and strong management for optimal effectiveness. While a good leader may tell the organization where to go, it still takes good managers to ensure they get there in one piece.
In many cases, effective leaders possess both a concern for the task while establishing an individual relationship with their employees. Since there is a relative direct connection between employees, their productivity, and the organization’s performance, it is essential for leaders to maintain a positive work environment to maximize and enhance their employees’ efforts to reach organizational efficacy. A leader’s behavior explains the reason that people feel productive, motivated, energized, effective, and committed in their workplaces.
High performance leadership teams understand that their collective and individual behavior casts a positive or negative shadow across the entire organization. And since employees tend to take their cues on what is important and how to behave from their leaders, negative behavior at the top creates negative behaviors far down into the organization, adversely impacting performance and productivity. Whether the leadership team is aware of it or not, their behavior casts a powerful shadow far into their organization. And actions speak louder than words! People watch the behavior of their leaders for clues as to what is accepted and what is not. When the leadership team says one thing and then behaves differently employees quickly figure out the real story. One of the major obligations of leadership is integrity between words and deeds!
Organizational behavior and leadership are elements in a company that work in conjunction with one another toward organizational success. Both behavior and leadership influence how the company will function and what will be achieved. Either behavior will determine how leadership functions, or leadership will transform the organizational behavior so that the behavior supports the organizational values.