Discourse on the Political Leadership, with Particular Emphasis on the Polish Socio-Political Concepts

By Oledzka, Justyna | Tamara Journal of Critical Organisation Inquiry, December 1, 2016 | Go to article overview

Discourse on the Political Leadership, with Particular Emphasis on the Polish Socio-Political Concepts


Oledzka, Justyna, Tamara Journal of Critical Organisation Inquiry


The way of studying leadership problematic aspects undergo a transformation, concepts and research methods are changing. The set of political power definitions and phenomena like leadership, influence, strength, management, supervision, authority and ascendancy is increasing. It derives principally from changes, that happened in a political research methodology, which puts more pressure on social context in the political system and its surroundings. Contemporarily, the most popular methods to analyse leadership phenomenon include: studies based on biographical background, in a way of demonstrating the leader as a key element; or studies that view the leader (not infrequently as a creator) in the light of history.

Many latest research papers underline the demand of interdisciplinarity of studies that concern leadership legitimization, moreover they indicate processuality as a one of elements which continue the studies. Thesis around the crisis in leadership is becoming less favored meanwhile, a form of personification a concept of governance, after years somewhat scientists' less interest, in view of intensifying role of leading in political systems and international environment today, a "renaissance of leadership" arises once again. Leadership studies highlight problem of personal aspect, however situational context analysis, including historical and cultural or socio-economic determinants, has also become significant (Bager, 2015, p. 37).

Meanwhile, in literature it is popular to move the studies on leadership from the political level to the social one (micro, meso-, macro-structural), as well as scientific, artistic, technical, etc. (Kaczmarek, 2001, p. 50). The political sciences terminology is imported also to the conceptual sphere by the managerial sector. The key distinction is the division into management and leadership. The basis of the division is the criterion of the need for the existence of supporters. Concepts and typologies of leadership are built based on many criteria, however, they are not always adequate to the reality and they keep pace with the dynamic changes of the political structure and its main institutions, including leadership (Jakubowska, 2001, pp. 43-44)1. A derivative of the visions adopted by the society includes the model of the ideal leader (for example integrated with the supporters or building the distance in leadership relations).

A specific type of political leadership is the labour leadership, which compiles elements of leadership and administration. Depending on the character of the association, the leadership model has the bureaucratic or personality features. According to Jacek Sroka:

"It is easy to see that in the large bureaucratic trade unions, much more than in other organisations, the management of the hierarchical and specialised administrative apparatus requires a combination of managerial abilities (organisational) with leadership" (Sroka, 2005, p.162).

Classic union leadership is two-type: these are company leaders and organisational-political leaders. Problems affecting the union leadership seem to be common to the problems of the political leadership, and the crisis which nowadays affects the trade unions is a derivative of the crisis of union leadership (Kozek, 2003, pp. 149-160). As part of the union leadership, like in the political leadership, it is possible to distinguish the transformational style, popular in the over company levels of management of the trade unions and the transactional style, present at the company level.

Undeniably the leadership is fundamental political institution and the analysis of current political events forces to meet the demands of area of symbolic research and institutional dimension of leading. Political leadership and its particular form - national leadership - remain, despite of political life deideologisation, as one of the most forceful forms of wielding influence. However, being a leader is not identical to fulfilment of the leadership role as it principally arises from normative system. …

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