Academic journal article IUP Journal of Organizational Behavior

Leadership Characteristics of Scientists in Indian Council of Agricultural Research: Readiness to Take Up the Leadership Role

Academic journal article IUP Journal of Organizational Behavior

Leadership Characteristics of Scientists in Indian Council of Agricultural Research: Readiness to Take Up the Leadership Role

Article excerpt

The paper describes the challenges faced by leaders in their attempt to prepare their organizations for an effective management. Ninety percent of the respondents have moderate readiness to take up the leadership role. Multinomial logistic regression analysis results indicated that there is no evidence to suggest that respondent's designation, age, gender, educational qualification, discipline group, total experience, number of days of technical training and management training affect readiness to take up the leadership role. The paper suggests that the value of autonomy of institution and freedom in work of the individual in pursuing their profession tends to affect the individual's readiness to take up the leadership role. This is because people in general do not want to be controlled by others and at the same time do not want to control others by accepting the leadership role readily.

Introduction

The issues in Organizational Behavior (OB) and Human Resource Management (HRM) are independent variables in any organization and have an impact on the dependent variable 'performance' in that organization. The variables in the fields of OB and HRM have not been studied so far in Agricultural Research System. This may be because research organizations are not easy to fight with, as their product is often intangible and performance in them is difficult to measure. Also, the human resources populating them are unique and sensitive. Thus, there is a shortage of scientifically-derived knowledge on even what is happening in research institutes. Hence, there is a need to generate scientifically and empirically-derived knowledge about several issues related to the internal functioning of research institutes. There is also a need to develop empirically supported ideas to enhance the internal functioning of research institutes to improve their performance. A study on the research leadership in the agricultural research will throw some light on the internal functioning of the research system. One of the ways to gain an understanding of leadership is to examine the different roles carried out by the leaders. These roles are a subset of managerial roles studied by Mintzberg (1973). This includes all the expected activities or behaviors stemming from the job being performed. The following eight roles have been classified as part of the leadership function of management (DuBrin, 2002).

Acting as figurehead, leaders spend part of theirtime engaging in ceremonial activities or serving as an official representative of the organization or escorting official visitors. As spokesperson, they answer letters or enquiries and formally reports to individuals and groups outside the manager's direct organizational unit like upper level management, clients or customers, labor unions, professional colleagues and the general public about the unit's activities, plans, capabilities and possibilities (vision). As negotiator, they make deals with others for needed resources which includes bargaining with superiors for funds, facilities, equipment; bargaining with other units in the organization for the use of staff, facilities, equipment; bargaining with suppliers and vendors for services, schedules and delivery times. As a coach, he/she coaches the team members through recognizing their achievements, giving feedback concerning ineffective performance and informing them of steps that can improve their performance. As a team builder, he/she builds an effective team by initiating activities like recognizing the team members for their accomplishments; initiating activities like giving parties that contribute to group morale and holding periodic staff meetings to encourage team members to talk about their accomplishments, problems and concerns. Leaders act as a team player by displaying appropriate personal conduct, cooperating with other units in the organization and displaying loyalty to superiors by supporting their plans and decisions fully. In the role of a technical problem solver, they serve as a technical expert or advisor and perform as an individual contributor towards tasks on a regular basis such as repairing machinery. …

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