Leadership can be defined in several different ways. There is the technical definition,
defined as "The office or capacity of a leader." However a practical definition is
leadership being much more than a position, but rather a state of mind and character.
An individual can be the CEO of a major corporation, and still not be a leader.
Leadership is not only what you do, but also how you do it. Followership can also be
defined in several ways, the technical definition, defined as "The capacitiy or
willingness to follow a leader." Followership, like leadership, has a much more
practical definition as well, the will to follow is only one type of followership, an
individual can be someone's follower and not realize it. In truth, everyone follows
everyone else, because every action a person takes causes a reaction. For example,
in the prison system personnel is taught that if an inmate holds you hostage, you
"follow his lead" to protect yourself.
In that scenario, you are the follower and he is the
leader because his actions dictate your actions. Thus, everyone is a follower, no
matter where they stand.
Continuous change also demands a lot from individuals as leaders, and has
become a continuous learning process. It is because of this that contemporary
leadership competencies connected to creativeness, innovation, renewal and self-
management are useful.
The traditional and modern leadership theories differ in one fairly discreet way.
The means of understanding entirely that, basically, everyone is a follower, but not
everyone is a leader. No matter how high up the chain of command one goes, there is
always a step higher, a leader is following no matter where his position is. This comes
from following his people, the ones who are following him. A leader is a follower
because, not only does he have to follow anybody above him in the hierarchy, but he
also follows the same people that he is leading. A follower, however, does not have to
be a leader. In comparison of modern and traditional leadership, the bridge between
the two is communication. With adequate communication, the leader can tell his
followers what he wants, and the followers can show him what they need him to do for
them. Communication is the key to both leadership and followership.
Some sources of power and politics involve the interpersonal power of expert,
reward, position coercive and referent power, it also involves corporate sources of
power as quality of management; quality of product or service; innovativeness; value
as a long term investment; financial soundness; ability to attract, develop, and keep
talented people; community and environmental responsibilities; and use of corporate
assets. The Power Dependency Map is useful to diagnose power because it yields
considerable insight into bargaining strategies between the individual, the organization
they may represent and the constituents involved. The outcomes of negotiations are
determined, in part, by the perceived power balance between the parties involved. The
empowerment process is sharing power with others through decentralized structures,
roles and responsibilities and through delegating work with authority. It is beneficial in
the work situation because it distinguishes the agent that has the capability to give
power, and in the event of a mistake made it is assumed that it is these institutional
agent who lead the action, or control and define the terms of the interaction.