Make your own free website on


Part 2 Chapter 4
Course Syllabus
Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Cchapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Contact Me
Part 2 Chapter 1
Part 2 Chapter 2
Part 2 Chapter 4

Chapter 4

The Leader as an Individual


We all know that people differ in many ways.  Some are quiet and shy while others are gregarious; some are thoughtful and serious while others are impulsive and fun loving.


Differences in personality, attitudes, values, and so forth influence how people interpret an assignment, whether they like to be told what to do, how they handle challenges, and how they interact with others. 


Leaders’ personality and attitudes, as well as their ability to understand individual differences among employees, can profoundly affect leadership effectiveness.





Some people are consistently pleasant in a variety of situations, while others are moody or aggressive.  To explain this behavior, we may say, “ He has a pleasant personality, “ or “She has an aggressive personality.”  This is the most common usage of the term personality, and it refers to an individual’s behavior patterns as well as how the person is viewed by others.   


Leaders who have an understanding of how individuals’ personalities differ can use this understanding to improve their leadership effectiveness.





Research has categorized personality into five general dimensions that seems to best describe personality.  These are often called the Big Five dimension of personality:


Quiet, withdrawn           Low      Extroversion              High      Outgoing energetic


Aloof easily irritated    Low    Agreeableness              High      Warm, good natured


Impulsive carefree         Low    Conscientiousness        High      Responsible dependable


Moody, tense,              Low        Emotional Stability         High    Stable, confident


Narrow field of           Low      Openness to Experience    High     Imaginative, curious

 Interest                                                                                                                            open to new ideas

 Likes the tried                                                                                                               

  And true                                                                                                                                                 





Some people believe that their actions can strongly affect what happens to them.  In other words, they believe they are “masters of their own fate.”


Others feel that whatever happens to them in life is a results of luck, chance, or outside people and events; they believe they have little control over their fate. 


Therefore, a person’s Locus of Control defines whether he or she places the primary responsibility within the self or on outside forces.   People who believe their actions determine what happens to them have a high internal locus of control (internal), while those who believe outside forces determine what happen to them have a high external locus of control (external).





In addition to personality differences, people differ in the values and attitudes they hold.  These differences affect the behavior of leaders and followers.




Whether we recognize it of not, we are constantly valuing things, people, or ideas as good or bad, pleasant or unpleasant, ethical or unethical. 


For example, a person who highly values honesty and integrity might lose respect and lessen his commitment and performance for a leader who tells

“little white lies”.

When a person has strong values in certain areas, these can have a powerful influence on behavior. 




An attitude is an evaluation  -  either positive or negative  -  about people, events or things.    


Behavioral Scientists believe attitudes can be observed thru three components:


Cognitive  (thoughts)  can be seen in a leaders’ ideas bout a specific employee’s performance and ability.


Affect   (feelings) can be seen when you observe how a leader feel about an employee


Behavior (your action)  can be observed when an individual is predisposed to act in a certain way.




Self concept refers to the collection of attitudes we have about ourselves and includes elements of self esteem whether a person generally has positive or negative feelings about themselves. 


A person with an overall positive self concept has high self esteem, whereas one with negative self concept has low self esteem.


In general, leaders with positive self concept are more effective in all situations.  Leaders who have a negative self concept, who are insecure and have low self esteem, often create environments that limit other people growth and development.




Every person has some habits, behavior, or attitudes that can limit his or her effectiveness.  By understanding your own “Achilles heel” leaders can change their behavior to improve leadership effectiveness and career success.



Continuing to remember that Nobody’s perfect and as much as possible try to avoid these weaknesses:


Never feeling quite “good enough”  Many people who seem quite self confident in a lower level position become frighten and insecure when promoted to a position of leadership because they feel they don’t deserve it.


Pushing to hard   Setting high goals and working hard to achieve them isn’t a bad thing for a leader.  Unfortunately, some people take this too far – they relentlessly drive themselves, and others to achieve more and more.  These people work compulsively and without joy, and they cause stress and unhappiness for anyone who has to work with or for them.


Being emotionally tone deaf  Unable to feel emotions himself or understand them in others.  Not being able to recognize the role of human feelings and motivations in the organization.



The above behavior patterns are potentially fatal flaws for leaders.  However, the texts emphasizes that people can learn to manage their weaknesses and change their behavior thus ensuring more effective leadership.



Your text discussed several other characteristics that play a part in leadership such as


Cognitive Differences  -   Right/Left Brain dominance



The Role of Charisma  -  People who inspire followers with an abiding faith, even if the faith can’t be stated in specific goals that are attainable.




Transactional versus Transformational Leadership



Due to time constraints I hope you will review these areas on you own.  They will not be part of your test questions.
















Enter content here

Enter supporting content here