Chpt 6 Contingency[1]

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Dr. William Allan Kritsonis lectures on the work of Peter G. Northouse

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Chpt 6 Contingency[1]

  1. 1. Contingency Theory Approach Leadership Theory and Practice, 3/e Peter G. Northouse, Ph.D. William Kritsonis, PhD Presenter
  2. 2. <ul><li>Contingency Theory Approach Perspective </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership Styles </li></ul><ul><li>Situational Variables </li></ul><ul><li>Research Findings of Leader Style Effectiveness </li></ul><ul><li>How Does the Contingency Theory Approach Work? </li></ul>Overview
  3. 3. Contingency Theory Approach Description “Leaders match their style to the competence and commitment of subordinates.” <ul><li>Contingency theory is a leader-match theory (Fiedler & Chemers, 1974) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tries to match leaders to appropriate situations </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Leader’s effectiveness depends on how well the leader’s style fits the context </li></ul><ul><li>Fiedler et al.’s generalizations about which styles of leadership are best and worst are empirically grounded </li></ul><ul><li>Effective leadership is contingent on matching a leader’s style to the right setting </li></ul>Perspective Definition
  4. 4. Leadership Styles <ul><li>Leadership styles are described as: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Task motivated </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Relationship motivated </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Task-motivated leaders - Concerned primarily with reaching a goal </li></ul><ul><li>Relationship-motivated leaders - Concerned with developing close interpersonal relationships </li></ul>Definition Dimension Definitions Least Preferred Co-Worker (LPC) Scale Leader Style Measurement Scale High = Relationship-motivated leader Low = Task-motivated leader
  5. 5. Situational Variables <ul><li>Leader-Member Relations </li></ul><ul><li>Task Structure </li></ul><ul><li>Position Power </li></ul><ul><li>LMR - Refers to the group atmosphere and the degree of confidence, loyalty, and attraction of followers for leader </li></ul><ul><li>TS - Concerns the degree to which requirements of a task are clear and spelled out </li></ul><ul><li>PP - Designates the amount of authority a leader has to reward or punish followers </li></ul>Situational Factors Definition Determine Favorableness of Situations in Organizations
  6. 6. Contingency Model Good 1 Poor High Structure High Structure Low Structure Low Structure Strong Power Weak Power Strong Power Weak Power Strong Power Weak Power Strong Power Weak Power Leader- Member Relations Task Structure Position Power Preferred Leadership Style 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Low LPCs Middle LPCs High LPCs Low LPCs
  7. 7. Research Findings of Leader Style Effectiveness LPC Score Favorableness of Situation Definition Low Very Favorable Very Unfavorable Situations going smoothly Situations out of control High Moderately Favorable Situations with some degree of certainty; not completely in or out of leader’s control <ul><li>Reasons for leader mismatch ineffectiveness: </li></ul><ul><li>LPC style doesn’t match a particular situation; stress and anxiety result </li></ul><ul><li>Under stress, leader reverts to less mature coping style learned in </li></ul><ul><li>earlier development </li></ul><ul><li>Leader’s less mature coping style results in poor decision making </li></ul><ul><li>and consequently negative work outcomes </li></ul>
  8. 8. How Does the Contingency Theory Approach Work? <ul><li>Focus of Contingency Theory Approach </li></ul><ul><li>Strengths </li></ul><ul><li>Criticisms </li></ul><ul><li>Application </li></ul>
  9. 9. Contingency Theory Approach <ul><li>By assessing the 3 situational variables, any organizational context can be placed in one of the 8 categories represented in the Contingency Theory Model </li></ul><ul><li>After the nature of a situation is determined, the fit between leader’s style and the situation can be evaluated </li></ul><ul><li>By measuring Leader’s LPC score and the 3 situational variables , it is possible to predict whether a leader will be effective in a particular setting </li></ul>Focus Overall Scope
  10. 10. Strengths <ul><li>Empirical support. Contingency theory has been tested by many researchers and found to be a valid and reliable approach to explaining how to achieve effective leadership. </li></ul><ul><li>Broadened understanding. Contingency theory has broadened the scope of leadership understanding from a focus on a single, best type of leadership (e.g., trait approach) to emphasizing the importance of a leader’s style and the demands of different situations. </li></ul><ul><li>Predictive. Because Contingency theory is predictive, it provides relevant information regarding the type of leadership that is most likely to be effective in particular contexts. </li></ul><ul><li>Not an all-or-nothing approach . Contingency theory contends that leaders should not expect to be effective in every situation; thus companies should strive to place leaders in optimal situations according to their leadership style. </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership profiles. Contingency theory supplies data on leadership styles that could be useful to organizations in developing leadership profiles for human resource planning. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Criticisms <ul><li>Fails to fully explain why leaders with particular leadership styles are more effective in some situations than others ( Black Box problem ) </li></ul><ul><li>Criticism of LPC scale validity as it does not correlate well with other standard leadership measures </li></ul><ul><li>Cumbersome to use in real-world settings </li></ul><ul><li>Fails to adequately explain what should be done about a leader/situation mismatch in the workplace </li></ul>
  12. 12. Application <ul><li>Useful in answering a multitude of questions about the leadership of individuals in various types of organizations </li></ul><ul><li>Helpful tool to assist upper management in making changes to lower level positions to ensure a good fit between an existing manager and a certain work context </li></ul>

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