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Followers and Followership AGED 3153. Thought for the day… “A river without a bank is a large puddle.” ~Ken Blanchard.

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Presentation on theme: "Followers and Followership AGED 3153. Thought for the day… “A river without a bank is a large puddle.” ~Ken Blanchard."— Presentation transcript:

1 Followers and Followership AGED 3153

2 Thought for the day… “A river without a bank is a large puddle.” ~Ken Blanchard

3 Why is it important to discuss followers? Individuals shift in and out of leader and follower roles Individuals shift in and out of leader and follower roles Everyone is a follower at one time or another Everyone is a follower at one time or another Leaders are influenced by actions, attitudes and skills of followers Leaders are influenced by actions, attitudes and skills of followers Leaders must adjust style to the situation, including followers (contingency theories) Leaders must adjust style to the situation, including followers (contingency theories)

4 Why discuss cont. Northouse’s definition requires reciprocity and the mutual exchange of influence. Northouse’s definition requires reciprocity and the mutual exchange of influence. Followers require many of the same qualities as leaders Followers require many of the same qualities as leaders Performance of followers, leaders and the organization depend on one another. Performance of followers, leaders and the organization depend on one another. Trend toward empowerment of team members Trend toward empowerment of team members

5 Example US Navy study found that outstanding ships were those staffed by followers who supported leader but also took initiative and did not avoid raising issues or concerns US Navy study found that outstanding ships were those staffed by followers who supported leader but also took initiative and did not avoid raising issues or concerns Commander Michael Abrashoff of USS Benfold said “the highest boss should be the sailor who does the work – not the person with the most stripes. Commander Michael Abrashoff of USS Benfold said “the highest boss should be the sailor who does the work – not the person with the most stripes. Whiteside, D.E. (1985) Whiteside, D.E. (1985)

6 Follower treatment Follower treatment Grassroots Leadership Video

7 Styles of Followership Robert E. Kelley (1992) Robert E. Kelley (1992) Describes 5 styles of followership: Describes 5 styles of followership: –Alienated –Effective –Passive –Conformist –Pragmatic Survivor

8 Styles cont. Styles categorized according to two dimensions: Styles categorized according to two dimensions: – Critical vs. dependent thinking – Passive vs. active behavior

9 Alienated Alienated Effective Effective Passive Passive Conformist Conformist Dependent, Uncritical Thinking Independent, Critical Thinking PassivePassive ActiveActive Pragmatic Survivor

10 Alienated Follower Passive, yet independent thinker Passive, yet independent thinker Previously effective Previously effective –May have experienced setbacks or frustration –Capable, but focus on shortcomings of organization Cynical Cynical Does not contribute to solving problems Does not contribute to solving problems

11 Conformist Active, but dependent, uncritical thinker Active, but dependent, uncritical thinker Carries out orders Carries out orders Participates willingly Participates willingly Concerned with avoiding conflict Concerned with avoiding conflict “Goes along to get along” “Goes along to get along”

12 Pragmatic Survivor Has qualities of all four Has qualities of all four Changes style depending on situation Changes style depending on situation Uses whatever style benefits his/her position Uses whatever style benefits his/her position Avoids risk and foster status quo Avoids risk and foster status quo 25-35% tend to be pragmatic survivors 25-35% tend to be pragmatic survivors Ex. – government appointees Ex. – government appointees

13 Passive Passive and uncritical thinker Passive and uncritical thinker Lacks initiative and sense of responsibility Lacks initiative and sense of responsibility Needs much supervision Needs much supervision Leaves thinking to leader Leaves thinking to leader

14 Effective Follower Active and Critical thinker Active and Critical thinker Has courage to initiate change Has courage to initiate change Open to risk and conflict to reach goals Open to risk and conflict to reach goals Serves best interests of organization Serves best interests of organization Committed to something larger than themselves Committed to something larger than themselves Works toward positive impact Works toward positive impact

15 Leader’s Role in Developing Effective Followers Manz & Sims’ (1987) Self Management Leadership: Lead others to lead themselves (support, empowerment) Lead others to lead themselves (support, empowerment) Use self-directed teams Use self-directed teams Empowerment Empowerment Act as coach and mentor Act as coach and mentor Provide encouragement and support Provide encouragement and support Encourage critical, independent thinking Encourage critical, independent thinking Provide ample information to perform Provide ample information to perform

16 The Leader's Challenge - To make people's strengths effective and their weaknesses irrelevant. ~Peter Drucker

17 The Power of Followers Leaders are almost never as much in charge as they are pictured to be; followers are almost never as submissive as one might imagine. The state of mind of followers is a powerful ingredient...leadership is conferred by followers. ~ John Gardner

18 References Daft, R. (2002). The Leadership Experience, Chapter 7 Daft, R. (2002). The Leadership Experience, Chapter 7 Hegarty, Ch. (1985). How to manage your boss. NY: Ballantine. Hegarty, Ch. (1985). How to manage your boss. NY: Ballantine. Kelley, R. E. (1992). The power of followership. NY: Doubleday. Kelley, R. E. (1992). The power of followership. NY: Doubleday. Manz, C. & Sims, H. (1987). Leading workers to lead themselves: The external leadesrhip of self-managing work teams. Administrative Science Quarterly, March, Manz, C. & Sims, H. (1987). Leading workers to lead themselves: The external leadesrhip of self-managing work teams. Administrative Science Quarterly, March, Rost, J. (1993). Leadership for the twenty-first century. Westport, CT: Praeger. Rost, J. (1993). Leadership for the twenty-first century. Westport, CT: Praeger. Vecchio, R.P. (2000). Organizational behavior: Core concepts. Fort Worth: Dryden Press. Vecchio, R.P. (2000). Organizational behavior: Core concepts. Fort Worth: Dryden Press. Whiteside, D. E. (1985). Command excellence: What it takes to be the best! Dept. of Navy. Washington, DC. Whiteside, D. E. (1985). Command excellence: What it takes to be the best! Dept. of Navy. Washington, DC. Yukl,, G. (2001). Leadership in organizations. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall. Yukl,, G. (2001). Leadership in organizations. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.


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