Leaders in any organization play a very significant role in the motivation of individuals within an organization. Their conduct and behavior determine the level of productivity of the staff. Leaders conduct and attitudes speak volumes and as people in authority others are likely to follow suit. Their influence touches all life aspects of the staff and that recognition is paramount. When a leader realizes their behavior is impactful, they will strive to conduct themselves in a way that motivates the workforce to be more productive. It is their actions that direct people are working under them to desire each day to make positive contributions to the organization. Considering the leaders influence will involve the scope of it and its manifestation in the daily activities of an organization. Motivation is a driving force either intrinsic or extrinsic that gives an individual the strength to work towards the desired end.
The success of any organization depends on the ability of those in leadership to motivate the staff towards attaining the organizational goals. The enthusiasm of the employees is one of the responsibilities of any leader as suggested by Harris et al. (2013). The highest responsibility a leader has is to ensure the employees remain motivated. One of the influences on staff motivation is the nature of therelationship that the staff may have with the managers. It plays such a critical role that overlooking it would lead to the detriment of the organization. Transformational leaders are very deliberate on this and work at to make sure it remains at is should. A leader who behaves in a professional, respectable and positive attitude, earns great respect from the staff and motivate them as well. He or she is perceived as the ideal on how people should behave. In that case, the employees will be motivated to treat their fellow staff in a similar manner. An employee will have the desire to work in a place where they feel they are valued, respected and people are optimistic. The professional and respectful leader creates trust with staff leading to job satisfaction as highlighted by Gill, Flaschner, Shah, and Bhutani (2010 p.1-10). The manager creates a working environment that is propagated with the values and virtues he or she exhibits. Contrary, a leader who is casual, pessimistic and disrespectful, will demotivate the workforce leading to low labor productivity as well as a culture of people who do not value each other.
The traditional theory of motivation concentrated on meeting the needs of the employees gradually up the ladder to give them satisfaction as Anderson (2014, p. 7) suggests regarding the traditional theory of needs. The hierarchy of needs theory is not used commonly by practicing managers. Most practicing managers choose to use the contemporary theories as they consider them more relevant and with great results. Faludi (2013), states that the goals setting theories significance are in ensuring the attainment of thedesired outcome through meticulous planning and decision making especially by managers. When employees realize the managers prudence in setting realistic and attainable goals, they are motivated to work towards that end. Managers who will influence staff in that end must of necessity be able to strike a balance between attainable goals that will require effort. The workforce is motivated when they realize the managers competence in offering direction for the company. Mendes and Stander (2011 p. 1-13) continue to reiterate the fact that the staff will be influenced positively to put theeffort in the work as they see competence exhibited by the leader through delegating authority to able staff. When delegation occurs, it communicates that the leader understands the staffs abilities and strengths. This can be motivating to the staff as they realize the leader is concerned about their daily welfare and talent.
Miner (2015) states the importance of equity on the motivation of the employees on the equity theory. In this theory, he highlights that when staff feels their manager treat all the staff without favoritism, they are motivated to work as they know their efforts will be rewarded accordingly. Moreover, they are likely to treat their colleagues with fairness and justice as they see modeled. However, a leader who offers preferential treatment to some employees over others will have anegative implication on the workforce. People will feel no one might reward their efforts appropriately and lack the desire to work optimally. Very high of inequality by the leaders may lead to low level of motivation, job dissatisfaction and eventually a person may quit the field as stated by Card, Mas, Moretti, and Saez, (2012 p.2981-3003).
In conclusion, good leadership behavior can lead to employees motivation and job satisfaction as argued by Olutade, Liefooghe, Olakunle, (2015 p. 188-214). Poor leadership, on the other hand, can undermine the progress and success of an organization. People follow what the leaders more than what they say. Wise leaders utilize their power and authority to influence others in the positive through modeling admirable behaviors that exhibit professionalism. Leaders have the ability to impact both extrinsic and intrinsic motivation (Yidong, and Xinxin, 2013 p. 441-455)
Anderson, A., 2014. Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. The Prairie Light Review, 36(2), p.7.
Card, D., Mas, A., Moretti, E. and Saez, E., 2012. Inequality at work: The effect of peer salaries on job satisfaction. The American Economic Review, 102(6), pp.2981-3003.
Faludi, A., 2013. A reader in planning theory (Vol. 5). Elsevier.
Gill, A., Flaschner, A.B., Shah, C. and Bhutani, I., 2010. The relations of transformational leadership and empowerment with employee job satisfaction: A study among Indian restaurant employees. Business and Economics Journal, 18, pp.1-10.
Harris, A., Day, C., Hopkins, D., Hadfield, M., Hargreaves, A. and Chapman, C., 2013. Effective leadership for school improvement. Routledge.
Mendes, F. and Stander, M.W., 2011. Positive organisation: The role of leader behaviour in work engagement and retention. SA Journal of Industrial Psychology, 37(1), pp.1-13.
Miner, J.B., 2015. Organizational behavior 1: Essential theories of motivation and leadership. Routledge.
Olutade, M., Liefooghe, A. and Olakunle, A.O., 2015. Influence of Entrepreneurial Leadership Skills on Employees Motivation and Job Satisfaction: A Leader Member Exchange (LMX) Approach. International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences, 5(9), pp.188-214.
Pinder, C.C., 2014. Work motivation in organizational behavior. Psychology Press.
Yidong, T. and Xinxin, L., 2013. How ethical leadership influence employees innovative work behavior: A perspective of intrinsic motivation. Journal of Business Ethics, 116(2), pp.441-455.
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