The Three Different Approaches To Leadership Business Essay

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There are three different approaches to leadership are:

Qualities /Trait approach:

The built-in quality of a leader .A born leader who has an insight within to lead.

Logical thinking Trait:

Simpler ideas

Persuading others

Explaining things in a simpler way

For Example Mahatma Gandhi has an ideology in him; self determination and empowerment are the basic traits of Quality approach to Leadership.

Situational Approach:

A situational leadership approach is Task related .It depends most on the behavioural style of the leader.

There are two theories that explains the situational presence of the leader

Fiedler Contingency theory: that explains the leader behaviour interacts with the favourableness of the situation and determines the group effectiveness.

House's Path Goal theory: That explains the directive, supportive, participated and achievement oriented behaviours depending on the subordinate's characteristics.

Functional Approach:

The most important approach used these days is the functional approach in which the leader:

Identifies the task

Control the team

Direct the skills

Satisfy the needs

There are three intersecting needs the task needs{what needs to be achieved},Individual needs{self efficacy and motivational needs}and the Group maintenance needs {collective thinking and working as a team with same mind set}.

Functional approach is the most important leadership approach followed by management point of view as it has all the characteristics of the trait and situational approaches in addition to employee orientation and foresightedness.

In a dynamic world today Leader follows thee basic leadership styles:

Authoritative Style: In which he has the directions and the subordinate follows them.

Participative Style: In which the leader inspies,influence motivates to the direction,

Free Rein Style: The leader communicates his vision to the subordinates to work on.



PREPARE for the journey:

The foresightedness ,and all the research work accumulates to prepare a team to work on a task that is achievement oriented ,motivates the subordinates that they can accomplish this task .preparing involves the cost ,time scale of achievement and proper team management. Allocating the task to the team members on a particular goal.

SLOGGING through the Swamp:

This is the middle part of the situation where the subordinate becomes stuck or confused of what needs to be done further, or can have different mode switches ,health conditions etc. There are many things that a leader considers in between the

Journeys changes in action plan dealing with the situations, economical crises like recession etc.Managing through the swamp is the most difficult situation that can be overcome by good intellectual leadership abilities.

After Arrival:

This is the phase just after the swamp is over all the confusions of the subordinates are clear and they become more stable and devoted to the task. This is the time for the Leader to introduce a new view plan to be more effective and more logical as he can see the plan.


The end result effects majorly on leader not the subordinates as you are accountable for your and the group actions solely.A good leader integrates effectively in all the three situations and stimulates his abilities the best .If a leader fails to integrate through the above he will not be considered a good charismatic leader.



Tesco was founded by Jack Cohen in 1919 initially selling grocery from a small stall in East End London .The first own brand sold by Tesco was tea supplied by a partner in the company initial TE Stockwell and CO from Cohen.Cohen opened his first Tesco store at Edgware in 1929 and 1932 became a Private Limited Company.


Food and drink retail sector is the largest industry in UK which provides employment to over three million people in primary production manufacturing and retailing.

Tesco is one of the largest food retailers in the world, operating around 2318 stores and employees over 326000 .has an online service as a subsidiary company's largest market is the UK where it operates under 4 banners.





The Hierarchical Structure of Tesco PLC

The hierarchy structure of Tesco is flat with only six levels between the CEO and the checkout staff. Operates in a Decentralised structure where the power of taking decision is with members only except for big giant decisions. For example every store has a manager and every manager can take a decision which is better for business in that particular store. Store Manager is answerable to Regional Manager.

"At Tesco we try to keep paperwork to a minimum; instructions simple; structures flat; and - above all - we trust the people on the ground. I am not saying that retail is like education merely that my experience tells me that when it comes to the number of people you have in the back office, 'less is more'"

Leahy has learned from Sir Ian Kennedy Chairman of Healthcare commission some important aspects of doing business. Those are:

A small central office

Listening to customers

Customer diversity (what people eat in London as against Glasgow);

The use of technology

Random checking (mystery shoppers)

By reducing the hierarchy he has managed to obtain certain advantages of dividing the work in the subordinates giving them certain authority has increased the motivation of employees and affected the overall importance of TESCO plc.

Marks & Spencer:

Marks & Spencer is been in the Industry for about 125 years of success now catering the Clothing and food sector in retail. It was founded in 1894 by Michael Marks and with a £300 investment by Thomas Spenscer.Started a penny business where everything was sold for a penny.Eventually growing this business now known as M&S has become one of the biggest brands of the century currently operating 450 store within UK employing 65000 people.Retail sector in one of the most expanded sector it is characterised by big competition.During the years people choices have also changed. It has now become very difficult to compete in the market without having competitive advantage.

M&S is striving hard with more strategic approaches in order to grasp its existing and potential Market Share.

The dynamic world of Retail things change very fast and in order to deal with the situation in changing environment the Organization needed a change formation. This change refocused to the core values of business.

Those are:




Delivering Good value for Money.

One of the changes in strategy is switching from a tall hierarchy of Organization to a flat hierarchy.

The flat Organizational structure gave all employees motivation and this strategy worked for Marks and Spencer. That means less time wastage and more work. Authority given to all employees which boosted their strength to 200% of the usual.

Quick decisions were taken .All employees are accountable for their decision .This means that they should take proper decisions which can be justified and explained to their Boss.


Historical Leadership:

Historical approach to leadership is now outdated. Except for the military and Government these days. Organizations are more cultured and value minded. In historical approach the Manager/leader takes the decision and subordinates work on the decision.

Contemporary leadership:

Contemporary approach defines the leadership as ability that applies Philosphical,psychological, social, cultural, political, economics, ethical, technological, and organizational internal and external environment

awareness to lead others to the specific task achievement.

The leader should have the ability to develop a conceptual skill to define a goal .The leaders mental and emotional abilities as well as interpersonal skills to motivate and lead.

A contemporary leader is one which works with a team. He motivates the team in every aspect .Problem solve their issues. Have a good knowledge of Internal and External environment and controls them by applying good strategies.

Tesco follows a contemporary approach as it is aware of the internal and external environment. The employee are responsible for their decisions and this is making them more active in day to day efforts.Tescos CEO Sir Terry Leahy has made couple of decisions like to explore the international market and has strategically planned ahead about the future goals keeping all the environmental changes in mind.

Marks & Spencer's:

M&S besides the clothing are also expanding their food business in European countries. As M&S in the past failed to capture a good share in this region they with a new strategic plan will reopen the M&S in Europe. The employees are well aware of this and has been communicated to them .They will be working as a team to achieve a goal in the European Market.

This decision depicts a contemporary approach as they changed their policy by the culture of European region and will create awareness of the brand in the Market.

Sir Terry Leahy TESCO Chief Executive

Sir Terry Leahy is one of the most successful businessmen .Has given 14 years of his life making Tesco a successful brand.From a local super market to the biggest retail chain in UK .Leahy will be retiring in March 2011, and will be replaced by Philip Clarke,the International director of the company.

"I wanted to develop a purpose and values that could sustain Tesco through its challenges and encourage and grow future leaders," "It has taken 14 years but that strategy has become a firm reality now and so I feel my work is almost complete."

Tesco has taken a good Market Share from Marks and Spencer and Sainsbury's.In year 2010 the company has made a profit of £3.4 billion.Has introduced Tesco club card to increase customer loyalty. Terry Leahy has proven to be a good leader as Tesco has now become No One Retail Store selling food and nnon food items.His dynamic leadership has made employees motivated and responsible for their deeds.

Marc Bolland(Chief Executive of Marks & Spencer)

Marc Bolland became the CEO of Marks&Spencer in May 2010.Marc introduced the basic concept of stock availability.He has made efforts to make more internet sale and find ways to attract new customers grabing the market share from its competitors.Initially Marc faced a lot of Criticism from the former Chief Executive Sir Stuart Rose but has managed to keep up his work and in the third half the performance shed glorry and achied the targets.This is a good leadership ability to manage a grasp over the Organization in such a short notice of time.He has dealt with the change environment from a food and drink business to Clothing and food.He has managed to overcome the obsticles created by recession and provoked a good team spirit.



Terry Leahy has proven to be a good leader as he has made TESCO one of the biggest Retail Food sector of UK.

Working on the low cost and low prices Tesco has one a big chunk of Market share to its credit.Every employee was motivated and worked for Terry as a subordinate .He has introduced the concept of mystery shopper in which he sends customers to the store in order to see the customer service provided by that store.Or to analyse people's buying behaviour.During his reign he introduced Tesco Club cards in order to increase customer loyalty.For employees he has been a guide and gave them authority to take decisions.He has made faster documentations and resulted in Massive achievements in goals.In year 2010 Tesco has achived a profit of £ 3.4 billion.

This shows the dynamic leadership style of a good leader who knows everything but also is open for suggestions.


M&S has been a great brand from aCentury now.It was lead by great leaders who have made M&S a very famous leading brand.Marc Bolland became the CEO of M&S in May 2010.As a newly appointed person he faced a lot of problems initially but has managed to strive through the major change in the industry.He has managed to increase the sales to meet higher goals and taken employees into confidence has made it work towards glory.


Both the companies are having dynamic leaders working on contemprory skills ,have managed to strive through change and brining dynamic returns to the organization .Their dynamic capabilities have break through the change in the business.


Principles of Management Kotler. (06/11/2010)