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Leadership is one of  the  most  mysterious  phenomena  that  occur  in  our
society.   Leaders  appeared  in  the  ancient  times  and  since  then  the
necessity  in  leadership  has  increased.  Our  society  has  become   more
complicated. Today there are a lot of social units on different levels  that
need leaders to function effectively. But it has been a  difficult  task  to
understand how leadership occurs. Leaders are different, their  tasks  vary,
as well as the way they lead their teams. Being an effective leader  in  one
organisation does not presuppose the same  success  in  other  organisation.
There are many but in this field  of  study,  leadership  raises  lots  of
questions. No wonder that there are several approaches to leadership.
The aim of this paper is to assess the applicability and value of  different
approaches using a service  organisation  as  an  example.   I  have  chosen
Quality Arcticus Hotel in Harstad and three of its leaders as  a  field  for
my research. I work at this organisation, so I  know  the  personnel  and  I
have observed the style of their work for some period. Now  I  will  use  my
knowledge and the method of  interview  to  go  deeper  into  the  question.
Quality Arcticus  Hotel  is  a  typical  service  organisation  that  offers
lodging and catering. The restaurant and the caf  belonging  to  the  hotel
are both very popular among the citizens of Harstad.  The  hotel  itself  is
the second best in the town, following Rkenes Gjestegrd (which  takes  the
first place due to its exclusiveness) Such success of Arcticus  Hotel  would
be impossible without effective leadership.
My work consists of theoretical and  practical  parts.  In  the  theoretical
part I describe the approaches that we have been introduced to.
In the practical part I  take  a  look  at  the  structure  of  the  Quality
Arcticus Hotel and try  to  apply  different  approaches  to  leadership  to
understand the style of work of the three leaders that I have chosen as  the
subject for my study. I describe what, in  my  opinion,  helps  these  three
persons to be effective leaders (if they are so in reality)

2. Theory about leadership.

2.1 Definitions of leadership

Defining leadership has been a complex and elusive problem  largely  because
the nature of leadership itself is complex. A lot of  studies  have  emerged
from every discipline  that  has  had  some  interest  in  the  subject  of
leadership:    anthropology,    business     administration,     educational
administration,   history,   military   science,   nursing   administration,
organizational   behaviour,   philosophy,    political    science,    public
administration,  psychology,  sociology,  and  theology.   (Rost,   J.   C.
Leadership for the Twenty-first Century, p. 45)
Joseph Rost -- and many others,  including  James  MacGregor  Burns,  Warren
Bennis, and Henry Mintzberg -- goes on to argue that the entire  history  of
modern leadership studies has been seriously flawed.  First,  because  while
everyone talks about leadership, no-one has satisfactorily defined  what  it
actually  is.  Like  art,  we  seem  to  know  it  only  when  we  see   it.
We can see how definition of leadership changed:
1927: ...the ability to impress the will of the leader  on  those  led  and
induce obedience, respect, loyalty, and cooperation.  (Steward,  in  Moore,
1930s: interaction between  specific  traits  of  one  person  and  other
traits of the many, in such a way that the course of action of the  many  is
changed by the one. (Bogardus, 1934)
Leadership may be broadly defined as the  relation  between  an  individual
and a group built around some common  interest  and  behaving  in  a  manner
directed or determined by him. (Schmidt, 1933, page 282,  quoted  in  Rost,
page 48)
1940s: Leadershipis  the  art  of  influencingpeople  by  persuasion  or
example to follow  a  line  of  action.  It  must  never  be  confused  with
drivershipwhich is the art of compellingpeople by  intimidation  or  force
to follow a line of action. (Copeland, 1942)
1950s: ...the process (act) of influencing the activities of an  organized
group in its efforts towards goal setting and goal achievement.  (Stogdill,
1960s: acts  by  persons  which  influence  other  persons  in  a  shared
direction. (Seeman, 1960)
1970s: a process in which an individual  takes  initiative  to  assist  a
group to move towards the production goals that are acceptable  to  maintain
the group, and to dispose the needs of individuals  within  the  group  that
compelled them to join it. (Boles and Davenport, 1975)
Warren Bennis and Burt Nanus in their  book  Leaders  said  that  Leaders
lead by pulling rather than pushing; by inspiring rather than  ordering;  by
creating  achievable,  though  challenging,   expectations   and   rewarding
progress toward them rather than by manipulating; by enabling people to  use
their own initiative and experiences rather than by denying or  constraining
their experiences and actions. (Bennis, W.,Nanus, B.,1985:225)
In 1993 Joseph C. Rost defined  leadership  for  the  twenty-first  century:
Leadership is an influence relationship among  leaders  and  followers  who
intend real changes that reflect  their  mutual  purposes.  Four  essential
elements must be present:
        1. The relationship is based on influence.
              The influence relationship is multidirectional;
              the influence behaviours are no coercive.
        2. Leaders and followers are the people in this relationship.
              The followers are active;
              there must be more than one follower, and there is typically
                 more than one leader in the relationship;
              the relationship is inherently unequal because the influence
                 patterns are unequal

The definition given by Rost comprises all the previous attempts  to  define
leadership, as it includes the elements reflected in the other  definitions.
However, most of the scholars considered some elements to be more  important
than others, so we have a  number  of  approaches  to  leadership.  We  will
describe the major ones in the next chapter.

2.2 Leadership evolution

Our world is changing and these  changing  surroundings  need  new  leaders.
When the world used to be stable, the tasks of the leaders were  to  control
and predict. Further, as the world was getting more chaotic,  leaders  faced
new tasks. This model shows the evolution of leadership:
Figure 1. Source: Richard L. Daft: Leadership: theory and practice. (1999,
Different approaches to leadership concentrate on different  eras  or  types
of leaders.

2.3 Trait approach to leadership.

Early efforts to understand  leadership  success  focused  on  the  leaders
personal traits. In the 1990s  the  great  man  theories  appeared.  They
tried to figure out who is born to lead. They studied the great  leaders  of
the past such as Caesar, Napoleon, and Richard III.  Those  days  the  world
was stable and predictable, the societies were not so  complex,  the  groups
were few and small. The leaders acted on macro level and  were  associated
with heroes.  Later researches (1940s-1950s) tried to find  the  universal
traits common  to  all  leaders.  There  was  a  sense  that  some  critical
leadership traits could be isolated. There was also a  feeling  that  people
with such traits could then be recruited, selected,  trained  and  installed
into leadership positions. In their studies  some  traits  did  appear  more
frequently  than  others:  technical  skills,  friendliness,   intelligence,
general charisma,  drive,  task  motivation,  application  to  task,  social
skills, emotional control, administrative skill, group-task supportiveness.
The problem with the trait approach lies in the fact  that  almost  as  many
traits as studies undertaken were identified.  Stogdill  examined  over  100
studies based on the trait approach. (Daft, R., 1999:65) He  uncovered  that
the importance of a particular trait was often relative to  another  factor-
the situation. Indeed, when we look  at  such  leaders  as  Stalin,  Hitler,
Churchill, Mother Theresa, Gandhi, Martin Luther King,  Jr.,  John  Kennedy,
Margareth Thatcher, do they have any traits in common all  together?  Having
failed to identify the leaders  traits,  the  researchers  understood  that
leadership is usually a more complicated process.

2.3 Behaviour approaches

   The results of the trait studies were inconclusive.  Researchers  changed
   the focus from the  great  men  to  small  groups  and  their  leaders.
   Researchers turned to an examination of leader  behaviours.  Rather  than
   concentrating on what leaders are,  as  the  trait  approach  urged,  the
   behavioural approach forced looking at what  leaders  do.  This  approach
   (1950s-60s) says that anyone who adopts the appropriate  behaviour  can
   be a good leader. (Daft, R., 1999:69) Behavioural patterns can be learned
   in contrast with traits that must be possessed.
   The studies of Iowa  State  University  were  a  precursor  to  behaviour
   approach. They recognised autocratic versus democratic leadership styles.
   The most prominent studies were those undertaken  by  the  University  of
   Michigan and  by  Ohio  State  University.  Interestingly,  both  studies
   concluded that leadership behaviours could be classified into two groups.
           Ohio  State  University                University   of   Michigan

   - Initiating  Structure                           -  Production  Centered
   -Consideration                                    -   Employee   Centered
   Likert (the University of Michigan) found that  employee-centered  leader
   behaviour generally tended to be more effective. Blake and Mouton of  the
   University of Texas went into the same direction and  suggested  the  two
   similar dimensions: concern for people and concern for results. But  they
   worked out the leadership grid and suggested five leadership styles:
   1. Impoverishment Management (minimal degree of each concern).  The  less
      effective leadership.
   9.1  Authority-Compliance  Management  (maximal  degree  of  concern  for
   results, minimal degree of concern for people)
   5.5 Middle-of.the-Road- Management (average degree of both concerns)
   1.9 Country Club Management  (minimal  degree  of  concern  for  results,
   maximal degree of concern for people)
   9.9   Team  Management  (maximal  degree  of  each  concern).  This   was
   considered to be the most effective leadership style.
   This approach goes further that trait approach by trying to group leaders
   into several categories  instead  of  finding  something  common  to  all
   leaders. Still, leaders were supposed to have either-or style.

2.4. Situational (contingency) approach

Unable  to  determine  which  particular  behaviour  patterns   consistently
resulted  in  effective  leadership,  researches  then  attempted  to  match
behaviour patterns that worked best in specific contexts or situations.  The
previous researches studied two dimensions:  leaders  themselves  and  their
relationships with followers. The central focus  of  the  new  research  was
situation in which leadership occurred. The most  important  point  is  that
the  components  of  leadership  style,  subordinate   characteristics   and
situational  elements  impact  one  another.  Fiedlers  contingency  model,
Hersey  and  Blanchards  situational  theory,  the  path-goal  theory,  and
substitutes for leadership each  describe  that  different  situations  need
different styles of  leadership  behaviour  so  that  it  was  an  effective
According to Fiedler, leaders can determine if the situation  is  favourable
to their leadership style. Task-oriented leaders tend to do better  in  very
easy or very difficult situations, while person-oriented leaders do best  in
situations of intermediate favourability.  Hersey  and  Blanchard  say  that
leaders can adjust their task  or  relationship  style  to  accommodate  the
readiness level of their subordinates.  The  path-goal  theory  states  that
leaders can use a style that either clarifies the path  to  desired  rewards
or increases the rewards so  that  the  followers  would  display  increased
effort and motivation. (Daft, R., 1999:114) We will have a  closer  look  at
two of these theories in our practical part.
The limits of this paper do not  allow  us  to  analyse  other  theories  as
dyadic theory, integrate and alternative approaches. But all these  theories
took into consideration the fact that leadership  is  a  complex  phenomenon
and its effectiveness depends on many factors.

3. Implementation of the theory in practice.

3.1 Presentation of Quality Arcticus Hotel

Quality  Arcticus  Hotel  is  a  typical  service  organisation.  It  is  an
equivalent of a four-star hotel, and  a  member  of  a  hotel  chain  Choice
Hotels. Here is an organisation plan of the hotel.
As an action company, it has a committee, consisting of 5 persons  who  were
chosen by  the  personnel.  In  the  hotel  we  can  see  a  vertical  power
structure.  One can observe three levels of leaders here:
Strategic level  the hotel manager (administrative director)
Middle level  the economy chief
Operative level  the restaurant chief, the bar chief, the chief-cook, the
reception chief, and the selling manager.
I have chosen three leaders for my research: the hotel manager, the  economy
chief and the restaurant chief. I work at this restaurant,  so  I  know  the
restaurant chiefs work best out of the operative leaders.
In connection with this paper I am interested in what kind of leader  styles
these three persons practice. I consider their work as  very  effective.  To
this point, the hotel has not had serious economical problems  or  conflicts
with the personnel. I should mention that it is a small hotel,  and  it  can
be considered a family organisation.[1] Moreover, all  the  three  were  not
elected to their positions and in reality can take  their  leader  positions
as long as they wish to. Such relations give  more  power  to  the  leaders.
However,  their  relationship  to  the  personnel  is   very   good.   Their
subordinates call them democratic bosses. I would  like  to  find  out  what
helps these leaders work effectively and keep such a good reputation.  I  am
going to use the leader theories that I have talked about in this  paper.  I
want to find out whether those theories are  relevant  when  explaining  the
success of these three leaders.
Now I want to look closer at the tasks of these  three  leaders.  The  hotel
manager works with daily leadership and strategic planning. Since  it  is  a
little hotel with few departments,  most  of  the  leaders  have  additional
responsibility. Quality Arcticus Hotel does not have a marketing  department
and the hotel leader has marketing as an additional task to his main  tasks.
This leader has a number of tasks which  he  handles  alone,  e.g.  problems
outside  the  hotel:  the  marked,  competition,  promotion.  He  can   take
decisions alone, having consulted the economy chief if  it  is  possible  to
put his ideas into reality. In my opinion, this fact that he can solve  some
problems  by  himself  helps  him  to  avoid  possible  conflicts  with  the
subordinates. Actually there are fields where he does not  need  to  lead  a
The economy chief takes charge of economy  and  budget,  this  is  her  main
responsibility. Her additional responsibility is the  personnel.  Her  tasks
are more  management  tasks  than  leadership,  as  she  works  mostly  with
calculating and controlling, and this is the work that  she  handles  alone.
Still, she also works with the personnel,  deciding  who  and  how  much  is
going to work in different situations.
The  restaurant  chief  takes  responsibility  for  the  personnel  in   the
restaurant and for the budget. She  also  takes  charge  of  the  arranging,
marketing and selling of all the products that the restaurant can offer.

3.2 Trait approach in practice

First, I want to find out if these  three  leaders  have  some  traits  that
explain their success.  I  have  interviewed  the  leaders  and  asked  what
particular traits help them in their work, in their opinion.  I  have  asked
their subordinates as well to describe these persons as chiefs.  At  last  I
have tested the  three  leaders,  using  the  questionnaire  from  the  book
Leadership , to find  out  if  these  persons  have  potential  leadership
qualities. The test showed  that  all  the  three  of  them  may  have  such
qualities, especially the restaurant chief. On my question,  if  they  could
be leaders of a big concern/company, the economy chief  answered  no,  the
restaurant chief answered yes and  the  hotel  chief  was  not  sure.  The
restaurant chief was very excited of the thought  to  lead  a  big  company,
which, to my mind, means that she has qualities and abilities necessary  for
a leader.
Among the qualities the hotel chief possesses  his  subordinates  mentioned:
democratic, flexible, not so demanding, motivating, honest, social,  result-
oriented, fair, friendly, well-organised, purposeful. He himself means  that
what helps him in work is an ability  to  listen  to  other  people  and  to
foresee the situation.
The economy chief was characterised as fair, polite,  well-organised,  nice,
understanding,  with  sense  of  humour,  flexible,   democratic,   precise,
consequent, hardworking, and motivating.  She  herself  considers  the  most
important for her success is being social, friendly and co-operative.
The  restaurant  chief  got  a   variety   of   characteristics   from   her
subordinates:  flexible,  understanding,   drive,   motivating,   demanding,
obliging, stressful, funny, purposeful, open, helpful,  optimistic,  active,
with a sense of humour,  charismatic,  absent-minded,  messy,  enthusiastic,
precise, co-operative, concerned about  quality.  She  herself  pointed  out
such traits as open, helpful, purposeful, tough, and a bit autocratic.
As we can see all the three leaders possess a number of qualities that  many
researchers  consider  having  great  value  for  leaders,  such  as  drive,
honesty,  friendliness,  and  motivating.  Still,  all  the  three   possess
different qualities, what does not prevent their  success.  Such  traits  as
messy and stressful, for example, can be an obstacle in handling  situations
that demand responsibility and self-confidence. To my  mind,  this  approach
does not go deep enough to explain the success of the leaders.

3.3 Behaviour approach in practice

Further, I have tried to  find  out  what  kind  of  behaviour  these  three
leaders practise. I have tested all of them, using two  questionnaires  from
the book Leadership . I have also interviewed both the leaders  and  their
One of the approaches, which I have described above,  recognises  autocratic
versus democratic  leadership  styles.  The  hotel  chief  is  a  democratic
leader. All his subordinates pointed it  out.  The  characteristics  he  got
from the personnel, such as flexible,  fair,  friendly,  not  so  demanding,
indicate his democratic relations with the subordinates.  In  the  interview
the hotel chief explained that although the organisation  has  a  hierarchic
structure, in  practice  he  and  his  subordinates  is  one  team,  working
together. When there is a problem to lose, he is on one line with the  other
leaders. Everyone has the right to say what they mean.
One of the tests I have used was designed to assess aggressive, passive  and
assertive behaviour. According to the test, the hotel chiefs  behaviour  is
assertive. This behaviour  is  considered  to  be  the  most  effective  for
leadership. Assertive people ask for what they believe,  and  stand  up  for
their rights in a way that others can accept. The quality  of  assertiveness
means being straightforward yet open to the needs of  others.  Assertiveness
strikes the correct balance between  being  too  dominant  and  too  soft,
which are not effective ways to influence others.
Another test shows if a person  is  people-oriented  or  task-oriented.  The
hotel chief is task-oriented according to the test,  but  only  with  a  one
points difference.
The economy chief  is  also  rather  democratic  than  autocratic.  All  her
subordinates named her social characteristics.  She delegates  authority  to
others, encourages participation and relies on her subordinates.
However, the test showed that she practises passive behaviour, which is  not
effective for leadership. She prefers conflict  avoidance,  suppressing  her
own needs, being inhibited and submissive.
She  is  also  more  people-oriented  than  task-oriented.  She  trusts  her
colleagues and asks their opinion. For example, is there are too many  rooms
to clean, she never insists on cleaning all of them the same day.  Satisfied
room-maids are more important for her than 100% done work.
The restaurant chief is both democratic  and  autocratic.  Her  subordinates
mentioned her social qualities  as  well  as  her  concern  for  work,  e.g.
demanding, drive etc. She is a person who  always  helps  her  subordinates,
asks for their opinion, in some cases fully delegates authority to the  team
of waiters and lets them decide how to  complete  the  tasks.  But  in  some
cases, especially demanding to represent the restaurant  at  its  best,  she
becomes autocratic and tells how to do the work. In  such  cases  perfectly-
done work is more important for her than satisfied subordinates. When a  new
waiter/waitress is being trained  up,  she  pays  much  attention  to  every
detail in doing the everyday tasks, such as laying up the table, talking  to
the guests and so on. When she lets her subordinates do the job without  her
supervision, every worker knows how to do the tasks so that the chief  would
like it. It is obvious that she is more task-oriented than  people-oriented.
She characterises her relationship with the subordinates as  good,  but  she
is aware of the fact that some persons are discontent with her pressure  and
a great deal of work which she expects to be done.
Another test showed her assertive behaviour, which is  considered  the  most
effective for leadership. (Daft..)

3.4 Situational approach in practice

All the three leaders behave in different ways. It is interesting  that  the
hotel chief, having serious tasks, allows higher degree  of  democracy  than
the restaurant chief. To my mind the difference is the situations they  work
in. Both the hotel chief and the economy chief have a number of  tasks  they
can handle alone and the number of their subordinates they work with on  the
other tasks is little. [2] The restaurant chief has around 20 waiters  under
her charge. And there is almost no task she can do alone without  any  help.
Moreover,  she  needs  to  co-operate  with   the   kitchen.   Her   working
surroundings are more conflictable and she needs to be firm. I think  it  is
incorrect to say that some behaviour is more effective than  other,  without
taking into consideration in what situation  the  leader  work.  The  leader
effectiveness is in other words contingent on the situation.
The  situational  theory  of   Hersey   and   Blanchard   focuses   on   the
characteristics of followers. According to this theory I can  say  that  the
restaurant chief has telling style, as she gives explicit  directions  about
how tasks should be accomplished. And this is an appropriate  style  in  her
situation  if  we  take  into  consideration  the  fact  that  50%  of   the
subordinates are not professional waiters. Half of  the  waters  started  to
work without any knowledge about the specificity of the job,  many  of  them
work part-time. So, not all the  waiters  show  high  degree  of  readiness.
Letting them decide and giving them responsibility is not  the  right  thing
to do.
On the opposite, the hotel chief and the economy  chief  work  with  a  team
that has high readiness and  shares  the  goals  of  the  organisation.  The
department chiefs can take responsibility for their own task behaviour.  The
hotel chief  prefers  delegating  and  participating  styles  of  work.  The
economy chief has delegating style.
Fiedler takes more factors into consideration than just the  characteristics
of the followers. He also means  that  task  structure  and  the  degree  of
leader power are important. Here is the table showing  different  situations
the leaders can work at.
Figure 2.
Source: Richard L. Daft: Leadership: theory and practice. (1999: 97)

Knowing the situation we can say what is more effective for a leader:  being
people-oriented or task-oriented.
The leader-member relations are good with  all  the  three  leaders  in  our
case. The task structure is high. There  are  little  ill-defined  tasks  or
researches, the hotel chief and the economy chief handle such  tasks  alone.
At the restaurant it can be a challenge to work with new  unexpected  tasks,
here we have work that sometimes needs creativeness. The task  structure  at
the restaurant  is  lower.  I  would  place  the  restaurant  chief  in  the
situation with unstructured tasks.
The formal position power is strong with all  the  three  leaders.  Although
the hotel chief and the economy chief prefer to work on one line with  their
subordinates, formally they have power to evaluate, reward or punish.
I can conclude that the hotel  and  economy  chiefs  work  in  a  favourable
situation, while the restaurant chief- in an  intermediate.  In  both  cases
task-oriented leaders perform better. As I have found out before, the  hotel
chief and the restaurant chief are task-oriented leaders, while the  economy
chief is more people-oriented. But as she is as popular as a chief and  does
her work successfully, I presume she can allow being people-oriented in  her
situation as well. The tasks for her subordinates are so clear and  routine,
and the relations with her team are so favourable that  she  does  not  need
focus on tasks.

In this paper we have tried to analyse different  approaches  to  leadership
and implement them in practice using Quality Arcticus Hotel as  a  model.  I
think that all the three approaches are relevant to  some  extent.  All  the
three leaders possess traits that are necessary  to  succeed  in  a  leading
position. The leaders in my analysis possess different behaviour styles  but
it is understandable. If a leader has to handle with  tasks  demanding  high
degree of responsibility from the subordinates he is more task-oriented.  To
be a hotel chief is a responsible work, the  leader  should  be  more  task-
oriented than people-oriented. On the operative level as well  there  are  a
lot of daily tasks which need to be performed with  high  quality.  All  the
goals that the leaders on the upper levels  set  up  for  the  organisations
shall be realised on the operative level. We  can  judge  the  work  of  the
hotel by the work of the departments  on  the  operative  level  (reception,
kitchen, restaurant, bar, selling  department).  That  is  why  it  is  more
natural, to my mind, for these leaders to focus more on the  tasks  than  on
their subordinates.
Situational approach takes more factors into consideration and that  is  why
I think it is a more applicable  theory  to  find  out  the  best  style  of
leadership.  Leadership  is  a  complex  phenomenon  and  it  can  not  been
explained with simple concepts. I  do  not  mean  to  say  that  contingency
approaches are the best in explaining success in leadership. There are  many
theories about this phenomenon. But out of the three approaches analysed  it
gives more concrete  answers  on  the  question,  why  exactly  this  leader
performs well in exactly these surroundings.


    . Yukl, Gary  Leadership in organisations, fifth edition, 2002

    . Daft, Richard L.  Leadership: theory and practice, 1999

[1] The hotell manager is married to the economy chief and one of the
operative leaders is their son-in-law.
[2] The hotel chief normally handles problems with the economy chief and
the five operative leaders. The economy chief has two persons working with
economy under her supervision. Besides she takes charge of the 8 room-

                             Executive Committee




                              restaurant chief




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