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Functions of Leadership


a. Motivating and guiding personal. Leadership provides the vital spark to motivation of human beings. Motivation has its roots in human relations which, in tum, can be fostered and toned up by leadership. Whenever a group of human beings desires to accomplish a common objective, the situation calls for the assistance of leadership. It is the leadership that guides, inspires and directs group members for achieving a unity of purpose and effort. Leadership alone can elevate men’s visions to higher thinking and raise their capacity to a higher standard of performance. It infuses such will-to-do into the group working as to secure the best contribution of human energy. Without leadership, a group disintegrates, destroys its team spirit and fritters away its energy.

b. Influencing and shaping the social system. Leadership is the concomitant of all human associations in our society. Leadership emerges as a natural process in any grouping of human beings. If there is a lack of formal and recognized leadership in the group, informal leadership is bound to develop from the rank and file members of the group. After its emergence leadership persuades the group to have an identity of interest, outlook and action. Leadership provides imagination, foresight, enthusiasm and initiative to the group. It exhibits an imitable code of conduct and responsibility, prescribes a high standard of performance and stresses the importance of respect for the individual. Unsatisfactory human performance in any organization can be primarily attributed to poor leadership.

c. Understanding followers and securing their cooperation. Not only the leader influences his followers, but he also is influenced by their problems and feelings. On the basis of information, response and operational facts secured from followers, leader’s behavior and action are modified and made ready for their voluntary co-operation. To grasp followers ‘ problem and feelings properly, however, leadership requires a skill of sympathetic contact, careful listening, correct diagnosing and winning their confidence. A true spirit of co-operation grows principally out of the manner in which the leader deals with his followers.

d. Creating a climate for performance. For enabling the followers to apply their full capabilities for work accomplishment and to extend their unselfish support, the leader is required to create a climate for performance. With this end in view, the leader must know what motivates his followers and how these motivators operate. The more thoroughly the leader understands the process of motivation, the more effective he is likely to be in getting the work successfully done by his follows: