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What is Organizational Change? Essay Example

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Essay

 “To survive in the 21st Century we’re going to need a new generation of leaders, not managers.” by Warren Bennis.

The purpose of this essay is to evaluate the above statement that why Warren Bennis said this. I will start by defining the terms manager and leader. Manager is a person who has to manage the things, which means to achieve and to bring about, to feel and to conduct the responsibility. On the other hand, leader is a person who leads by guiding, and influencing in a course, opinion, direction, and action. There is much of arguments concerning to the difference between management and leadership. It has been noted that not all managers use leadership. Usually, it is supposed that anyone in a position of management is a leader. Similarly not all leaders can manage the things.  Leadership  is  done by those people  who  are  not  in  the positions of management  (e.g.,  an  informal  leader).  Some analysts contend that although leadership and management overlap, the two activities are not identical. The extent of overlap is considered a point of difference (Yukl, 2010). Management and leadership involve a unique set of functions and activities.

The  first  analyst  to  take  a  stand  on  this  statement  was  Abraham  Zaleznik whose momentous article published in the Harvard Business Review. He claimed that both managers and leaders make an important contribution to any organization and even the contribution of each one is different. He contended that the leaders advocate and tackle the new approaches and change, but the managers only advocate the stability and status quo. In addition to this, he said while leaders are concerned with understanding the beliefs of people and obtaining their commitment, but the managers only exercise authority, carry out the responsibilities,   and concerned only with how things can be accomplished. (Zaleznik, 2001)

Bennis has been considered the top business leaders of our time due to his unique works to the world of leadership. Due to his experience in military, Bennis performs what he preaches, reaping the confidence of business people since last three decades (Warren Bennis, 2000). The Speakers of Washington Bureau discussed the research that Bennis performed on 90 leaders of the United States. His research ended with the conclusion that if someone wants to be a good leader, then he/she must possess four factors: vision, trust, meaning, and self-deployment.  His study also presented that leaders are essential to the success of an organization and to be a good leader seven characteristics are necessary. These include technical skills, judgment, conceptual skill, character, people skills, track record, and taste (Bennis & Nanus, 2007).

In order to support that why we need leaders not the managers Bennis provided the following difference between leaders and managers;

  1. The manager administers; the leader innovates.
  2. The manager maintains; the leader develops.
  3. The manager accepts the reality; the leader investigates it.
  4. The manager focuses on systems and structures; the leader focuses on people.
  5. The manager relies on control; the leader inspires trust.
  6. The manager has a short-range view; the leader has a long-range perspective.
  7. The manager asks how and when; the leader asks what and why.
  8. The manager looks always on the bottom line; the leader always looks on the horizon.
  9. The manager copy and reproduce; but the leader originates.
  10. The manager accepts the status quo only; the leader challenges it.
  11. The manager is the traditional good soldier for himself; the leader is his or her own person. (Bennis, 2000)

More recently, John Kotter a scholar of the Harvard Business School claims that, management and leadership are two different approaches, yet complementary action systems in organizations. Particularly, he contends that leadership or leader is about to cope with change, whereas management or manager is about to cope with a complication (Kotter, 1990). For Kotter, the leadership process consists on (a) establishing a  vision  for  an  organization;  (b)  lining up  the human resources  with that  stated vision  with the help of  communication;  and  (c)  encouraging  people  to  work  through delegation  and  by fulfilling the  basic  need. The process of leadership makes change and uncertainty in the organization. (Kotter, 1990)

Bennis stated that, after all, implicit in the term lead is the concept of going anywhere. The employees in an organization demand an image of a desired future that makes and inspires them and wants to be a component of the struggle (Bennis & Nanus, 2007). Just as particularly, they have to look at the cause why they are required to perform actions and take decisions, and in what ways those decisions and actions match with the whole image. Otherwise, levels of motivation can be small in nature as human resources in the organization goes through workday tasks action lists that are worthless tobest, and incompatible and confusing, the worst. Seeking to lead an organization or a team in the absence a vision is just as complex as struggling to make an image of the 1000-pieces puzzle without having a look at the box cover. Both are approximately impracticable. So the leaders, with an implicit vision, can concentrate on employees and keep all people toward the achievement of same goal.  (Bennis & Nanus, 2007)

Bennis argued that especially in the situation of uncertainty and economic stress people look at the leaders for confidence and assurance and for vision, clarity and purpose. They desire their leaders to be a basis of integrity and trusted values. It has been proven that these attributes are significant in assisting leaders be victorious and achieve superior results of the organization. He further argues that a good manager might not be a good leader, but a good leader may be a good manager. Lunenburg, (2007) states that if anyone is efficient at organizing, planning and controlling phases, he/she may not be successful in observing new opportunities or influencing and inspiring others to work willingly. Whereas few people are leaders by born and others should learn to lead.

Another reason that why we need a leader instead of the manager because leadership integrity and values and are vital today more than ever, said Bennis.  He stated that when I initially started to share the significance of this idea a few years ago, there were only few notorious instances where the confidence and trust of employees, customers, and stakeholders had been damaged by leaders who did not show sound integrity and values. Today, obviously, the reports are rife with illustrations, and these events have shaken our entire confidence in leadership.

In this regard, Lunenburg, (2007) stated that prospective talent and employees want to perform in the surroundings where the leaders are obvious on their integrity and values, and their performance is consistent and predictable with those values. Unavoidably among the characteristics of top leadership the followers’ esteem is the character of integrity and honesty. Leaders must know that to adjust, to shift, and to make required organizational changes and employees need to have faith in that change.

In today’s environment of economic challenges and uncertainty, numbers of organizations are required to change, adapt, and turned out more effective and efficient. So leaders because of their characteristics are more adept that managers at leading this type of necessary change which managers cannot do so. It has been believed that leaders are consisting of their personal adaptability to change tested. The leaders in the organizations who have been recruited as managers have been paid and trained to maintain the existing state of affairs. Such type of managers may have complexity in eliminating their blinders, getting traditional methods of performing their task and on some occasion even an arrogance and pride. Furthermore, in times of crises and change, the employees look at their leaders for confidence and assurance. A brave leader is the one who shows peace when there is panic all around. In the middle of uncertainty they show the confidence and develop a visionary and even a hopeful perspective.

Today, one of the greatest challenges that organizations are facing is their need to become more effective and efficient, i.e., producing or doing more with fewer resources. While it is in our knowledge and this type of phrase has been used for some time, in the current economic surroundings, doing or producing more with fewer resources is an exact requirement for the number of organizations.  In effect, what has been witnessed is one from two ways either a pessimistic, at situations devastating knee-jerk response to such stress; or the leader who reacts to the change in more efficient ways. It has been believed that the best approach in order to deal efficiently with these types of stresses is to maximize the potential and to the motivate people in the organization which only the leaders can do very effectively instead of the managers.

In conclusion, the statement of Bennis is almost correct that we need the leaders not managers because organizations allow its managers the legal power to lead, but there is no guarantee that they will be competent to lead efficiently in the uncertain and stressful environment. Today, the organizations are required to have effective and efficient leadership and somehow the strong management for optimal effectiveness. In  the current dynamic environment,  we  need such leaders  who can  challenge and maintain  the  status  quo  and  to  persuade and inspire  organization members. Although Bennis’ researches and leadership guidelines and rules have guided a number of people, organizations overwhelm large hindrances, and have encouraged corporate America to struggle for excellence, but we also required managers to help in maintaining and developing a functioning workplace of smooth level.

References

Bennis, Warren. (2000). Managing the Dream: Reflections on Leadership and Change. New York: Basic Books.

Bennis, Warren, & Nanus, B. (2007). Leaders: The strategies for taking charge. New   York: Harper Collins.

Lunenburg, F. C. (2007). Leadership versus Management: A Key distinction—in theory and practice. Houston: The NCPEA Press/Rice University.

Kotter, J. P. (1990). What leaders really do? Harvard Business Review, 68, 103-111.

Yukl, G. (2010). Leadership in organizations, 7th Edition. New York: Prentice Hall.

Zaleznik, A. (1997). Managers and leaders: Are they different? Harvard Business   Review, 55, 74-78.

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