Sample Management Research Paper Summary on the Impact of Leadership Style on Organizational Change

The Impact of Leadership Style on Organizational Change

The type of leadership style in an organization influences many factors in the organization’s growth. For instance, the leadership influences the power distance, the motivation and attitude of employees among other factors. Changes in leadership styles also influence organizational changes. There are three key models of organizational change that are used in the business set up. The top down interactive approach to organizational change involves change that is driven by the top management throughout the organizational functions (Duffy & Griffin, 2000).

Diffusion of experiments is the second change strategy that takes place through the administration of the different departments in the organization. The grassroots approach to change is initiated either by the planning department or by the personnel in the organization and involves the participation of all the organization’s members.

Another difference that exists in the organizations is the type of leadership presented. The authoritative style is applicable in situations of urgent need and involves managers making all necessary decisions and giving instructions to others.

The second style is the affiliative style which is most applicable during changes where the changes create a break in relationships (Cameron & Green, 2004). The style should be used together with another leadership style. Other styles include participative leadership where the leaders consult with the subordinates; laissez faire where the leaders allow the subordinate group to make their own decisions; pacesetting which is used in combination with another strategy where there are high levels of competence; coaching which is relevant during changes and transformational leadership. The transformational leadership style is used by charismatic leaders to cause high maturity levels among the employees.

The transformational leader has genuine concern for all the organizational members due to the aspect of individualized consideration. Through understanding the feelings and attitudes of all the members, the leader can thus bring out the best in each member. In addition to this, the transformative leader also carries out intellectual simulation by allowing members to be inventive and innovative in the course of their duties. Innovation in members is recognized and appreciated (Hussey, 2000).

The leaders also offer their followers the opportunity to experience passion and motivation in the performance of their duties. By gaining the respect and trust of the followers, transformative leaders can also act as the role models to their followers. This makes the transformational leadership style the most influential in the organizational context in comparison to other leadership styles.

There are various steps that are taken to achieve organizational change through the use of transformational leadership. The first step is the creation of urgency. The perception that there is an urgent need for change can drive the employees towards change acceptance. Following the creation of urgency, the leader has to form coalitions driven by the information regarding the need for change. To communicate this need effectively to the employees, the coalition should then produce a vision of change based on the organizational needs. This vision is then communicated to all the employees to provide a basis from which to work. The changes should be aligned to the job descriptions and the organization’s compensation systems to avoid conflicts between the management and the employees.

After the communication of the vision, the organization can then create short term wins through constant review. Building on the achieved success builds the employees’ motivation while anchoring the success on the organizational culture makes it sustainable. In conclusion, it is recommended that the transformational leadership style be used in all instances unless there is need for urgent decision making where autocratic leadership suffices. The leadership should also be anchored on invention an innovation and should use different styles regarding the prevailing conditions in the organization.


Cameron, E., & Green, M. (2004). Making sense of change management: A complete guide to the models, tools and techniques of organizational change. London [u.a.: Kogan Page.

Duffy, M., & Griffin, E. (2000). Facilitating organizational change in primary care: A manual for team members. Abingdon: Radcliffe.

Hussey, D. E. (2000). How to manage organizational change. London, Angleterre: Kogan Page.

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