Leadership is generally described as process of influence that causes an effect to those who follow it. On the other hand it should be noted that the ability of a leader to be influential relies on his or her ability to exercise power. Leadership therefore is the aptitude or authority to direct other people towards achieving an objective. The common leaders include chief executive officers and top management and board of directors. From these definitions it is very obvious that power and leadership are intimately related and hence it is very important to understand the relationship. As a sports director, one has to exercise power and influence working as the athletics administrator. Power is defined as the capability to gathering together the human resources to get some task done and this usually have an effect on the members of the organization in several aspects including decision making process, people and organization behavior and conditions. Authority can be described as the respected influence that may or may not cause a fruitful consequence while power is the authoritative achievement of results. For example, a manager who can influence workers to work extra hard in the organization to increase the output is said to have authority and power. 2. 0 Literature Review 2. 1 Leadership Characteristics A Leader is some one who has the ability to guide the performance of a certain duty or task and is described as the one in command implying that he or she holds a position that has influence over others (Pavlovic 2007). This position of guiding, leading others to carry out a task or having the authority to issue commands usually comes with certain responsibility and hence requires that a leader should have certain characteristics that will make him stand out from the rest as the leader or else everything may be dismantled because of poor management. Leaders usually develop unique leadership skills and characteristics and as usually unlike each other (Baker et al 2003). This perception may be true though many researches show that leaders are characterized as responsible or irresponsible, men or women and so on. Basically men are viewed as being objective, competitive, independent, responsible, rational, ambitious, aggressive, and logical. Women on the other hand are considered as gentle, intuitive, emotional, sensitive, illogical, passive, warm and accommodating. Most of these perceptions hold true but they are normally disputed as mere stereotyping without basis as they portray a good leader as being masculine and any woman leader who is tough and focused is considered to be unfeminine and one who expressed concern, passion and emotion is viewed as being too soft to lead because of the compassionate character (Pavlovic 2007). There is no clear cut limit or gauge that can determine the characteristics of a good leader because of the dynamic field of leadership ranging from business leadership to school management, healthcare leadership and sports management. However the following are some of the desired or rather good characteristics that have been found to be common among all leaders (Baker et al 2003) Trust: trustworthy is a very important characteristic for any type of leadership strategy. As a director of athletics, one needs to be able to coexist with others and be able to win their trust. Leadership cannot succeed without the trust of those being led. This therefore means that integrity and honesty are very critical to good leadership and makes the leader outstanding without which, the people will see no need to for the leader’s demands or requests. A good leader will always lead by example and in the process earns the right to lead other formally or informally and have responsibility for them. It has been established that trustworthiness brings about the real power or authority founded on the trust from others (Baker et al 2003). When one has power and authority he or she has already attained the leadership influence. Confidence: a good leader exudes confidence in his/her work as the leader towards others. The outcome of such characteristic is that the organization being lead like the athletics team will be trustful to the leader as they look up to him or her, following the orders and carrying out the tasks very well. When a leader is confident about his/her powers, it serves as a motivation to the team and they would do a very good work. Ambition: A good leader should not be contended with holding the second position because success is measured in terms of who won the top position. Good leadership is that which aims to achieve the highest standards, meaning that as a leader, one should endeavor for excellence in all aspects of leadership (Buckingham 2005) Orderly: some conditions in an organization usually rely on the attitudes of the leader. In the event of uncertainty and hopelessness, a leader must remain organized and able to carry out his/her duty to achieve the final objective. This will definitely give the team a feeling of confidence, reassurance and security (Buckingham 2005). The team usually expects positive demeanor and self-reliance from the leader. Tranquility: there are many challenges that face leaders like directors, managers, and other administrators as they strife thorough the leading task. A good leader is expected to treat the equally, and to inspire others to not to succumb to bad influence but rather overcome these huddles. In the event of a crisis, and emotions, the leader should remain composed, calm and hold firm to the original agenda and objective (Pavlovic 2007). Only great leaders can be able to remain calm in the event of a predicament. Enthusiasm: a good leader is the one who inspires the people he is leading with his or her passion and commitment. By showing the people how things are done and by developing self-confidence and determination, the leader is like to make the people in any organization being lead to work mainly as a team or collectively to achieve the organizations objectives. A real leader should not be afraid to perform his or her work and offering an example to that he/she is leading. Analytical Thinking: a problem usually has many faces that need to be addressed. As a great leader, one needs to keep the main issue in focus but still be able to assess the problem and integrate it into parts that can be dealt with immediately and those that can wait (Clough et al 2002). The ability to critically analyze a problem and solve it in a progressive manner handling each step tactfully is very essential.
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