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Contigency Theory

The Contingency Theory takes the context in which the leader is operating into consideration and tries to isolate the conditions that allow for effective leadership.

There are three key theories that enhance our understanding of leadership by explaining situational variables. They are Fiedler’s Model, Hersey and Blanchard’s Situational Leadership Theory, and the Path-Goal Theory of Leadership.

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Contigency Theory

  1. 1. PRESENTATION ON: CONTIGENCY THEORY S. Liton Kumar Roy Amitav Roll# 117851 Jagannath University, Dhaka 12-0
  2. 2. What Is Leadership?  Leadership – The ability to influence a group toward the achievement of goals  Management – Use of authority inherent in designated formal rank to obtain compliance from organizational members  Both are necessary for organizational success 12-1
  3. 3. Trait theory: leadership is inherent, so we must identify the leader based on his or her traits Behavioral theory: leadership is a skill set and can be taught to anyone, so we must identify the proper behaviors to teach potential leaders 12-2 Theories of Leadership:
  4. 4. Contingency Theories  While trait and behavior theories do help us understand leadership, an important component is missing: the environment in which the leader exists  Contingency Theory adds this additional aspect to our understanding leadership effectiveness studies  Three key theories: – Fiedler’s Model – Hersey and Blanchard’s Situational Leadership Theory – Path-Goal Theory 12-3
  5. 5. Fiedler Model  Effective group performance depends on the proper match between leadership style and the degree to which the situation gives the leader control. – Assumes that leadership style (based on orientation revealed in LPC questionnaire) is fixed  Considers Three Situational Factors: – Leader-member relations: degree of confidence and trust in the leader – Task structure: degree of structure in the jobs – Position power: leader’s ability to hire, fire, and reward  For effective leadership: must change to a leader who fits the situation or change the situational variables to fit the current leader 12-4
  6. 6. Graphic Representation of Fiedler’s Model 12-5 E X H I B I T 12-2 Used to determine which type of leader to use in a given situation
  7. 7. Fiedler’s Cognitive Resource Theory  A refinement of Fiedler’s original model: – Focuses on stress as the enemy of rationality and creator of unfavorable conditions – A leader’s intelligence and experience influence his or her reaction to that stress  Research is supporting the theory. 12-6 Stress Level • Low • High Intellectual Abilities • Effective • Ineffective Leader’s Experience • Ineffective • Effective
  8. 8. Assessment of Fiedler’s Model  Positives: – Considerable evidence supports the model, especially if the original eight situations are grouped into three 12-7  Problems: – The logic behind the LPC scale is not well understood – LPC scores are not stable – Contingency variables are complex and hard to determine
  9. 9. Situational Leadership Theory  A model that focuses on follower “readiness” – Followers can accept or reject the leader – Effectiveness depends on the followers’ response to the leader’s actions – “Readiness” is the extent to which people have the ability and willingness to accomplish a specific task 12-8 Ability to follow Willingness to Follow Leadership Behavior Unable Unwilling Give clear and specific directions Unable Willing Display high task orientation Able Unwilling Use a supportive and participatory style Able Willing Doesn’t need to do much
  10. 10. House’s Path-Goal Theory  Builds from the Ohio State studies and the expectancy theory of motivation  The Theory: – Leaders provide followers with information, support, and resources to help them achieve their goals – Leaders help clarify the “path” to the worker’s goals – Leaders can display multiple leadership types  Four types of leaders: – Directive: focuses on the work to be done – Supportive: focuses on the well-being of the worker – Participative: consults with employees in decision making – Achievement-Oriented: sets challenging goals 12-9
  11. 11. Vroom and Yetton’s Leader-Participation Model  How a leader makes decisions is as important as what is decided  Premise: Situational variables interact with leadership attributes to impact the behavior of the leader. – Leader behaviors must adjust to the way tasks are structured in the organization. – This is a normative model that tells leaders how participative to be in their decision making of a decision tree • Five leadership styles • Twelve contingency variables 12-10 E X H I B I T 12-5
  12. 12. Summary and Managerial Implications • Leadership is central to understanding group behavior as the leader provides the direction. • Extroversion, conscientiousness, and openness all show consistent relationships to leadership. • Behavioral approaches have narrowed leadership down into two usable dimensions. • Need to take into account the situational variables, especially the impact of followers. • Research on charismatic and transformational leadership has made major contributions to our understanding of leadership. • Leaders must be seen as authentic and trustworthy. • Investment must be made in the future through mentoring and training leaders. 12-11
  13. 13. THANKS TO ALL 12-12