This blog has discussed the concept of project management in IT. Leadership refers to a kind of influence that authority figures have on their fellow team members. This influence is not only social but also person-oriented as well as interpersonal. It also explores the importance of leaders in the success of a project. It is a known fact that too much power leads to corruption. The articles have highlighted this to state that leaders must not take advantage of their powers as this will only lead to the complete failure of their project.
The authors of the chosen articles have concluded the same things that the authors of earlier studies had reached, that is, leadership is indeed an integral part of successfully managing a project, be it big or small. Furthermore, authentic leaders must maintain a perfect balance of their powers that they yield. Kessler believes that it is not possible to lead without authority. Power is, no doubt a social process that exists between individuals or groups of individuals. It is generally exercised between two individuals or parties of individuals – the one with the power and the one on who force is applied. This statement is very true in the sense that the project team leader has the authority to control the actions of his subordinates as well as take the final decision about the project welfare. Moreover, Kessler has accurately pointed out the two significant hazards that can result from the incorrect use of power. For one, abuse of power, that is, to misuse leadership powers for reasons other than what is expected of them, or quite simply, using controls unfairly. This may also be called corruption. The second danger is the exact opposite of the first one: not making use of the powers at all. If the powers that are given to leaders to ensure the success of a project and to guide his fellow team members in the right direction are not used at all, then they are wasted. Therefore, it is essential for project leaders to ensure that they use their leadership power only for the success of the project and not for any other reason (Kessler 2010, p.527).
Another article has discussed the concept of balanced leadership, which may happen when horizontal leadership is enabled and allowed to occur by vertical leaders. The authors are clear on what they think impacts and influence the balanced leadership in IT projects. The attitude of the vertical leader, his trust in his team members, and the situation all of these factors influence balanced leadership and ensure the success or failure of the projects. The authors have further explored vertical leadership, horizontal leadership, and other forms of leadership, including, relational, and distributed that are mandatory in any project team for the success of their project. Particularly in the case of IT project management, a good project manager must have enough competence in the emotional quotients, like all other project leaders, must be accessible and friendly, and motivate others to take up more complex and challenging tasks. All these characteristics are integral to lead the team towards success and achievement (Müller, Packendorff and Sankaran, 2017).
Another article has shed light on the connection between project success and transformational leadership, an area that has not been explored much in the past. The authors have concentrated on the style of leadership of the project manager, though the leadership style that has been emphasized here is the transformational leadership. They have rightly pointed out that efficient project leaders must break down the whole task and assign small portions to the appropriate team members. Doing this helps them to complete their respective tasks quickly and leads to the overall success of the project. Therefore, it is beyond doubt that the transformational leadership style, coupled with various team-building exercises, has the power to motivate the team members to perform brilliantly. However, the limitations of this study lie in the fact that the findings are founded on subjective data instead of objective data concerning project success. Moreover, the cross-sectional design of research has been applied here, which restricts the conclusions concerning causal direction (Aga, Noorderhaven and Vallejo, 2016, p.806).
The fourth article has discussed the benefits of shared leadership. Shared leadership means that instead of a formal leader, all the team members share power equally among themselves. However, the authors have surveyed team leaders and team members regarding shared leadership. Their findings suggest that although shared leadership is advantageous, project management leaders are not in favour of it. This is primarily because the project leaders are not willing to understand the capabilities and potentialities of their fellow team members to lead themselves. The lack of trust limits the team members from showing their real capacity, which in turn proves disadvantageous for the overall team and its project. Therefore, the authors have rightly concluded that it is indeed essential for project managers to view themselves as heroic and that they need to rethink and reconsider their roles to allow more autonomy in their teams (Hoegl and Muethel 2016)
The importance of ideal leadership in project management has been depicted in all the articles above. Not only that but also the right style of leadership, the relationship between power and leadership, various forms of leadership as well as the concept of shared leadership have been demonstrated by the authors with extreme clarity. Though there have been some limitations with some of the findings regarding the methodology used, the overall discussion is very significant for project managers. Furthermore, this study can be a basis for future research work on the various styles of leadership in different fields and sectors.
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