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The most comprehensive and replicated of the behavioral theories resulted from research that began at Ohio state university in the late 1940¶s. These researchers sought to identify independent dimensions of leader behavior. Beginning with over a thousand dimensions, they eventually narrowed the list to two categories that substantially accounted for most of the leadership behavior described by employees. They called these two dimensions 1) Initiating structure 2) Consideration
It refers to the extent to which a leader is likely to define and structure his or her role and those of employees in the research for goal attainment. It includes behavior that attempts to organize work, work relationships and goals. The leader characterized as high in initiating structure could be described as someone who ³assigns group members to particular tasks´, expects workers to maintain definite standards of performance´, and emphasizes the meeting of deadlines´. Example : Thomas Seibal, chairman and CEO of Seibal systems, ranks high in initiating structure. After forecasting a shrinking market for his firms software, Seibal quickly devised a new budget and cost cutting plan. He laid off 10% of employees, cut travel spending in half, and pared recruiting cost from $8 million to $1 million. Seibal¶s leadership style emphasis cutting cost in order to meet his company¶s profitability goals.
It is described as the extent to which a person is likely to have job relationships that are characterized by mutual trust are characterized by mutual trust respect for employees ideas and regard for their feelings. He or she shows concern for followers comfort, well being, status and satisfaction. A leader high in consideration could be described as one who helps with personal problems, is friendly and approachable and treats all employees equal. Example: AOL Time warner¶s CEO Richard Parsons, rates high on consideration behavior. His leadership style is very people oriented, emphasizing cooperation and consensus- building.
Extensive research based on these definitions found that leaders high in initiating structure and consideration tended to achieve high employee performance and satisfaction more frequently than those who rated low on consideration, initiating structure or both.
performance and satisfaction tended to be high. low on both the dimensions or high on one and low on another. But initiating structure is also associated with absenteeism and grievances. But in some cases high productivity was accompanied by absenteeism and grievances. ii. . The findings of these studies are: i. There is a positive relationship between initiating structure and employee performance. When both these dimensions are high. There is a positive relationship between consideration and regularity of employees and low grievances.The basic feature of this theory is that leadership behavior is plotted on two axes rather than on single continuum. This is explained with the help of the figure. But consideration is negatively related of performance. High consideration and low structure High consideration and high structure Low structure and low consideration High structure and low consideration - Consideration initiating structure Thus a leader can be high on both the dimensions. iii.