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Functions of Leadership

There is no unanimity of opinion as to what the functions of the leadership are. This is because detailing of functions depends on one's general concept of leadership. Leadership functions are related to goal achievement and to the maintenance and strengthening of the group. Functions in the former category, instrumental to achieving the goals of the group include making suggestions for action, evaluating movement towards the goal, preventing activities irrelevant to the goal and offering effective solutions for goal achievement.

Functions in the second category include encouraging the members, releasing tension that builds up and giving everyone a chance to express himself. The main functions of leadership are to contribute to the achievement of the group goal and to help hold the group together. The leader by himself alone cannot achieve the group goal and help it maintain its solidarity and strength.

Leadership is not the activity of an individual alone. In a large scale organization it becomes a collective activity for no single individual can meet the tremendous demands of working out the whole organization. This has led to the view that leadership like power is dispersed throughout the organization. No one person has all the leadership functions. The functions of an organization are divided and each individual in his respective position provides leadership in so far as he contributes to the attainment of the group goal and the maintenance of the group cohesiveness. The leadership is provided at several levels in the hierarchy but at the same time individual leadership is important. The leader is the symbolic spokesman, the coordinator supreme, the important participant in decisions as to goals, the primary change content and the example to the organization.

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