Leadership Styles in HR Management
The process of globalization is acting to enhance many changes in everyday life of the population of the world, and leadership is considered one of the main means to achieve the desired results in the most effective way. Application of leadership styles in health care organizations is considered extremely important, as human life is the greatest value, as well as those health care workers who apply various leadership styles in order to contribute to people’s health maintenance and as a consequence, to life safety. Examining the concept of leadership, it is very important to distinguish several styles that can be noticed in the modern practice and also provide a clear explanation of traits of successful leaders. Description of real world leaders and their styles and practice would be useful for better understanding of the results of the concept application.
However, first of all, a clear definition of the concept of leadership needs to be provided. Leadership is not a passive theory, but it is a process which represents actions of people. It is important to pay attention to the fact that organization, hospital in this particular case, cannot represent a leader, but only a person can perform this function, as leadership is based on interactions among people (Leedy, Ormrod, 2010).
Leadership is directed to a person or a group of people whose behavior is aimed to be changed. After the aim is reached, these people become the followers and their present is an integral feature of leadership.
As a process, leadership means that some people should be influenced, and there are several ways to act so. First of all, the followers can be changed by intellectual activity; secondly, emotional influence can be applied, and finally, the leader might cause behavioral influence.
Being a complex concept, leadership does not only allow the leader to apply various modes to influence people, but it also gives the leader an opportunity to apply various leadership styles.
Three main styles of leadership can be defined. These are authoritarian, democratic, and free reign style. The first one is used when the leader tells the subordinates what should be done. For example, it takes place when a registered nurse tells their subordinates what actions need to be taken to provide a better health care or follow the rules of the hospitals. This style is appropriate when the leader has enough information and skills and also when the subordinates are well-motivated. Time limitations are acceptable for the style and do not make any significant difference when decisions of the leader take into account real opportunities of the subordinates.
Democratic leadership style is especially popular now. It is applied when the leader believes that it is better to work together with the team. Nevertheless, despite the common work, the leader is the person to make the final decision. However, this style of leadership is applied when it comes to internship in health care settings, as the leader does not possess enough information or skills. Such leaders are not required to have some sophisticated skills, so they start working with other employees who have better qualification. Such style is considered mutually useful, as it enables the leader and the team to make more reasonable decisions.
Free reign style is also applied at health care settings, especially when it comes to the work of nurses. Today their roles are increasing and they perform more and more functions. Some of them, such as medication prescription, are allowed to be performed without control of physicians and this example might serve to illustrate the style. It is important to notice that, despite the fact that representatives of the team make various decisions, their leader is the one to be responsible for them. The style is used only when health care providers are able to analyze the situation on their own and identify what should be done and how it should be done (Service, 2009).
Regardless of the fact which style of leadership is chosen, the leader needs to possess the following traits:
- Being self-balanced
- Being ambitious
- Being self-confident
- Desire to learn
- Being just and fair
- Being creative, and so on.
The list of the traits can be continued, and it has been proven by Linda Aiken and Geraldine “Polly” Bednash who were recognized to head the list of the nursing leaders. These two nurses have outstanding experience in terms of teaching, research, and clinical practice; they have received numerous honors and credentials for their contribution to the world of medicine and health care provision (Fralic, 1999).
Thus, it is possible to conclude that leadership is extremely important to be applied in every health care organization. The history knows numerous leaders who provided health care and contributed to the health of population, and all of them possessed a range of skills. These are being improved and made more advanced under the influence of the process of globalization.
Fralic, M. (1999). Nursing Leadership for the New Millennium: Essential Knowledge & Skills. Nursing and Health Care Perspectives, 20 (5).
Leedy, P.D. and Ormrod, J.E. (2010). Practical research: Planning and design. (9th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Service, R. (2009). The leadership Styles Quotient: Measuring toward Improve. Business Renaissance Quarterly, 4 (1).