Assignment Help on Leadership, Decision Making & Ethics
The current era of globalization, gradually changing economies and highly competitive markets has emphasized the role of leadership. At present the leaders in contrast of the traditional leaders, adopt multiple strategies and techniques leading their organization to the desired goals. Decision making is another factor that influences the effectiveness of leadership. Through leadership participation and involvement, there is greater possibility for the organization to develop, implement, and monitor the progress being made in the area of quality and performance improvement (Abiodun, 2010, p.64).
Commonly any business operation can be termed as a complex of multiple strategies, techniques and decisions. As quoted by Singh (2012) that a good leader has the skill to organize work more effectively and to make high quality decisions. Whereas decision making by organizational leadership is regarded as the main component for the success or failure of any organization. If organizations are going to achieve peak performance and continual improvement, organizational leaders and employees must excel in the areas of decision making, problem solving, and critical thinking (Goetsch, 2011, p.245). The effectiveness of such decisions is based on ethical values, principles and cultural values. Thus successful organizational operations are based on competent leadership decisions, whereas ethical behavior, social values and principles are the main ingredients for the decisions that are advantageous for the organization in the long run. Successful organizations invariably seem to have competent leaders who are able to define and transmit a creative vision, that generates a spirit of success (Gass & Harris, 1996, p.114).
Leadership will be ineffective without devoted followers. Employees are the main driving force of any organization. Organizational leaders in support of their leadership qualities enhance the motivational level of employees; gain their loyalty, modifying them as an asset for the organization. A high performance organization operates in a way that brings out the best in people and produces sustainable high performance over time (Kelly, 2012 p.76).
External and internal challenges are two opposing forces that create resistance for the organizational operations. It is the capability of a leader that how he utilizes his skills to encounter with such forces. As quoted by Mohapatra & Laxmikant (2014) that employees are the most important resource for any company, but they are the ones who are most difficult to manage. Employees hold a priority role among the internal challenges. Fulfillment of employee needs, wants and expectations results in employee satisfaction and loyalty (Rao, 2011, p.316).
Successful leaders develop favorable working environment and also establish different programs for their employee’s benefit, taking such measures not only motivates the employees but at the same time persuades them for their best performance. Influence and persuasion is a central part of a leader’s job; leaders routinely attempt to influence employees to work hard and perform at a high level (George & Jones, 2009, p.413).
Leaders are responsible to perform in the best interest of their organization and its employees. They implement their operational procedures in accordance with the social responsibility, ethical principles and non-compliance with any bias or partiality. The effective leadership model increasingly emphasis on the values of leaders and leadership qualities that influence the strategic decision-making and execution, including corporate social responsibility related decisions and actions (Jin & Lin, 2011, p.583).
Possessing leadership qualities is not the assurance of success, the mode of implementing such qualities makes a leadership more effective and result oriented. Leaders who adopt influential style, appears to be more successful than any other type of leadership. In such leadership style, employees are more committed, loyal and comfortable with their work. In general, committed employees perform in parallel with their leaders to achieve the desired goals. Organizations perform better in which employees have the liberty to share their views, opinions and can take their own decisions. Employee’s commitment towards work helps a leader achieve the organizational goal (Mishra, 2001, p.326).
People perform better when their efforts are rewarded, although rewards need not always be financial (Dyro, 2004, p.216). Employees share in their full devotion in performance of their tasks when they are provided a favorable working environment and are assured of acknowledgment upon completion of their task. According to expectancy theory, workers will be motivated to work harder when they believe their enhanced efforts will improve performance and that such improved performance will lead to desired rewards (Leonard & Trusty, 2016, p.255). Different organization depending on the employee’s culture and attitude, develop different programs or reward systems, to enhance the level of confidence and motivation among the work force. Motivated employees are those who are comfortable with their assignments and who believe that their managers value them (Dyro, 2004, p.216).
In the current scenario of globalization, companies operating across borders due to difference in cultures of the principle company and the one operating in another region, leaders have to be more particular about the employee’s behavior, attitude and interest. Element of bias or partiality must not be practiced. Employees when deprived of their demands or their interest are not regarded, might not perform progressively. Thus organizational goals will not be achieved.
A leader who makes good decisions is skillful in shaping the future (Muchinsky, 2006, p.440). The competency of leadership is measured by the effectiveness of the decisions made by a leader. It is the decisions that forecast an organization’s success or failure in the long run. As noted by Wu (2013) that while leaders play their own leadership and management role in decision making, they also need to coordinate the relationship between various departments of their organization. A leader must consider deeply all the complexities and the consequences involved with the decision made. Ethics, social responsibility and equality are the main elements of an effective decision.
Every success, every mishap, every opportunity seized or missed stems from a decision someone made or failed to make (Harvard Business School Publishing Corp, 2011, p.137). An organization is continuously faced with multiple unpredictable challenges, whereas in some events leaders have to take hasty decisions which are not confirmed of its accuracy. Some decisions are made under conditions of urgency and demand high technical expertise (Muchinsky, 2006, p.440).
Successful leaders take on board its employees for all decision making processes, such strategy not only develops a sense of confidence and loyalty among the employees but also persuades them to invest their best service for achieving the organizational goals. Decision making inclusiveness can consist of a whole range of options from minimal consultation prior to the decision to full delegation of authority (Wart, 2012, p.189).
Leaders in the present scenario of intense competition avoiding any risky decisions, establishes an effective communication link with the employees. They are encouraged to share their ideas and views, whereas individual meetings are conducted gaining employee’s regular feedbacks. All such measures enables the leaders to be fully cognizant about employees attitude and mind set, also it will enable the leader to forecast the consequences of the decision made. The leader solicits input to make wise decisions, and the employees feel that their perspective is valued because they participate in the dialogue (Solomon & Schell, 2009, p.87).
Role of Ethics:
Individual factors such as gender, education, nationality, age, and locus of control can affect the ethical decision making process, with some factors being more important than others (Ferrell, Fraedrich & Ferrell, 2010, p.140). It is to be assured that decisions are made in compliance with the code of ethics. Ethical decisions develop loyalty; represent respect, authority, justice and value concern, while portraying a skilled leadership.
Ethical attitude and behavior of organizational heads aids in modifying the organizational culture more ethical. A robust corporate culture develops confidence among the employees, enhances their level of motivation, persuading them to perform their best, at the same time making the organization more productive. Thus retaining a prominent position among the highly volatile competitive market, gaining more profits. Aligning productivity and ethics means recognizing that ethics often trump productivity: efforts to improve ethics by empowering employees usually heighten ethics and productivity (Holzer & Lee, 2004, p.213).
Employees morale and loyalty in an organization is influenced by the ethical leadership. Leaders respecting ethical values become a role model for their followers, whereas the same follower attempts to imitate the same principles of their leader, making the working environment ethical and equitable. As quoted by Burke & Cooper (2009) that ethical leaders also recognize that value is in the success of people in the organization. They implement regulated operational measures and agreeable working attitude for the employees. Ethics can be regarded as the main element that makes an organization exemplary among the competitors and the community.
In making ethical decisions all aspects influencing the organizational procedures are to be considered, individual employee’s rights, impartiality, fair solution to issues and mutual sharing of knowledge are basic factors making a decision an ethical. It is not about the leader as an individual, it is about something bigger – the goals and mission of the organization (Burke & Cooper, 2009, p.194).
Each business organization prescribe its own code of ethics, whereas the leadership and the employees both performing in compliance of these ethical codes establishes an ethical organizational culture. A code of ethics is a decision making guide that describes the highest values to which an organization aspires (Phillips & Gully, 2014, p.19). Different strategies are adopted by organizational leaders like, in job training sessions, reward systems, and casual get-togethers to develop ethical behavior among the employees. workers are individuals and they will be motivated by a variety of personal interests (Ferrell, Fraedrich & Ferrell, 2010, p.189). Whereas, employees possessing ethical attitude and behavior performs with complete devotion and loyalty to achieve organizational goals. Ethical employee behavior determines short term organizational performance and long term organizational success (Phillips & Gully, 2014, p.19).
Consequences of Unethical Leadership:
When an individual in a leader’s role fails to make impartial decisions, fails to acknowledge employees issues or their feedbacks, fails to maintain a communication link with the employees and fails to implement its operational procedures in compliance with the international labor standards, appears to be an unethical leader.
As a leader’s attitude and behavior have a deep impact on the performance of their employees, performance of employees operating under an unethical leadership is badly deteriorated. More unethical issues within the organization are developed, employees lost their interest and their moral collapsed. Ledlow & Coppola (2011) argues that unethical leaders set the stage for harmful activities and outcomes that will eventually affect all people and all stakeholders in the organization. The organization’s overall performance is shattered even its reputation among the global markets declines. Shareholders and investors lost their confidence on the organization, which may result in withdrawals of investments. Thus decline in production and sales.
There are many elements like more self interest (greed), less interest of the employees, incompetent to manage large number of employees, political influence or nepotism, can be blamed for unethical leadership. Even in today’s most advanced and highly technical business environment, many skilled and well knowledgeable leaders have failed to be an ethical leader. There are evidences of unethical leadership among most popular and well established organizations operating at present.