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We tried to explain during last couple of sessions the theoretically background and approaches to
understand this process of leadership. In this lecture we will shift our focus to leader as an individual
and try to understand the personality and person part of that individual known as “a leader”. To
understand this let’s try to start from basic personality part. Personality:
Personality is the pattern of relatively enduring ways in which a person feels, thinks, and behaves.
Personality is determined by nature (biological heritage) and nurture (situational factors).
Organizational outcomes that have been shown to be predicted by personality include job satisfaction,
work stress, and leadership effectiveness. Personality is not a useful predictor of organizational
outcomes when there are strong situational constraints. Because personality tends to be stable over
time, managers should not expect to change personality in the short run. Leaders should accept
employees’ personalities as they are and develop effective ways to deal with people. To understand
leader we need to understand him/her as individual. For this understanding personality indicator is very

The Nature of Personality: People’s personalities can be described in a variety of ways: 1).
Personality is the pattern of relatively enduring ways in which a person feels, thinks, and behaves. 2).
Personality is an important factor in accounting for why employees act the way they do in organizations
and why they have favorable or unfavorable attitudes toward their jobs and organizations.

Some Major Forces Influencing Personality:
Personality Determinants
: An early argument centered on whether or not personality was the result of
heredity or of environment. Personality appears to be a result of both influences. Today, we recognize a
third factor—the situation.

􀂃 Influences the effects of heredity and environment on personality
􀂃 The different demands of different situations call forth different aspects of one’s personality.
􀂃 There is no classification scheme that tells the impact of various types of situations.
􀂃 Situations seem to differ substantially in the constraints they impose on behavior.

Heredity refers to those factors that were determined at conception.
􀂃 The heredity approach argues that the ultimate explanation of an individual’s personality is the
molecular structure of the genes, located in the chromosomes.
􀂃 Three different streams of research lend some credibility to the heredity argument:
The genetic underpinnings of human behavior and temperament among young children.
Evidence demonstrates that traits such as shyness, fear, and distress are most likely caused by
inherited genetic characteristics.
One hundred sets of identical twins that were separated at birth were studied. Genetics accounts
for about 50 percent of the variation in personality differences and over 30 percent of
occupational and leisure interest variation.
Individual job satisfaction is remarkably stable over time. This indicates that satisfaction is
determined by something inherent in the person rather than by external environmental factors.
Personality characteristics are not completely dictated by heredity. If they were, they would be
fixed at birth and no amount of experience could alter them.

􀂃 Factors that exert pressures on our personality formation:
􀂃 The culture in which we are raised
􀂃 Early conditioning
􀂃 Norms among our family
􀂃 Friends and social groups
􀂃 The environment we are exposed to plays a substantial role in shaping our personalities.
􀂃 Culture establishes the norms, attitudes, and values passed from one generation to the next and
create consistencies over time.
􀂃 The arguments for heredity or environment as the primary determinant of personality are both
􀂃 Heredity sets the parameters or outer limits, but an individual’s full potential will be determined by
how well he or she adjusts to the demands and requirements of the environment.

Variables Influencing Individual Behavior
Personality is the function of “The Person” and “The Environment. In other words it is a Person-
Situation Interaction.
Relationship of different components in behaviour is show in the following slide.

Types of work-related behaviour:
Values Represent Basic Convictions
A specific mode of conduct or end-state of existence is personally or socially preferable to
an opposite or converse mode of conduct or end-state of existence.
They have both content and intensity attributes.
An individual’s set of values ranked in terms of intensity is considered the person’s value
Values have the tendency to be stable.
Many of our values were established in our early years from parents, teachers, friends, and
Importance of Values
􀂃 Values lay the foundation for the understanding of attitudes and motivation.
􀂃 Values generally influence attitudes and behaviors. We can predict reaction based on
understanding values.

Attitudes: Attitudes are evaluative statements that are either favorable or unfavorable concerning
objects, people, or events. Attitudes are not the same as values, but the two are interrelated.

Main Components of Attitudes: There are three components of an attitude
Cognitive component
􀂃 The employee thought he deserved the promotion (cognitive)
Affective component
􀂃 The employee strongly dislikes his supervisor (affective)
Behavioral component
􀂃 The employee is looking for another job (behavioral). In organizations, attitudes are
important because of the behavioral component

How Consistent Are Attitudes?
􀂃 People sometimes change what they say so it does not contradict what they do.
􀂃 Research has generally concluded that people seek consistency among their attitudes and
between their attitudes and their behavior.
􀂃 Individuals seek to reconcile divergent attitudes and align their attitudes and behavior so
they appear rational and consistent.
􀂃 When there is an inconsistency, forces are initiated to return the individual to an
equilibrium state where attitudes and behavior are again consistent, by altering either the
attitudes or the behavior, or by developing a rationalization for the discrepancy.
􀂃 Cognitive Dissonance Theory
Leon Festinger, in the late 1950s, proposed the theory of cognitive dissonance, seeking to
explain the linkage between attitudes and behavior. He argued that any form of
inconsistency is uncomfortable and that individuals will attempt to reduce the dissonance.
Dissonance means “an inconsistency.”
􀂃 Cognitive dissonance refers to “any incompatibility that an individual might perceive
between two or more of his/her attitudes, or between his/her behavior and attitudes. “
􀂃 No individual can completely avoid dissonance.
􀂃 The desire to reduce dissonance would be determined by:
The importance of the elements creating the dissonance. Importance: If the elements
creating the dissonance are relatively unimportant, the pressure to correct this
imbalance will be low.
The degree of influence the individual believes he/she has over the elements. Influence:
If the dissonance is perceived as an uncontrollable result, they are less likely to be
receptive to attitude change. While dissonance exists, it can be rationalized and
The rewards that may be involved in dissonance. Rewards: The inherent tension in high
dissonance tends to be reduced with high rewards.
Moderating factors suggest that individuals will not necessarily move to reduce

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