2 Kinds of Leadership Authority
Au-thor-i-ty: power to influence or command thought, opinion or behavior.
Authority is an intriguing and important word, as it applies to an individual's ongoing quest to be a a lot more effective leader. Those of us who aspire to a lot more successful levels of personal and professional leadership want a clear understanding of what the word means practically, as nicely as literally. Consider Webster's formal definition above, and then think about the two workplace applications which can be fraught with either unexpected difficulties or untapped possible.
Formal authority: the organizational power that comes with the position that 1 hones or occupies being able to ask (or tell) someone to do some thing and then expecting that it will be done. No matter what job or title we could hold in an organization, all of us have some formal measure of energy or authority associated with that position.
As is the case with most items, the level of power entrusted to us can either be employed or abused, depending on our chosen actions or motivations.
For the duration of the course of an typical day, every single one of us makes dozens of diverse decisions. Besides the obvious business decisions required of our positions, we also make personal decisions concerning how we will act, speak, feel, listen, respond, and so on. If we turn into too enamored with the "energy of our positions," it can become extremely easy to disregard, or overlook entirely, vital input that we may well otherwise obtain from followers, peers and superiors. Typical "managers" are notorious for this. Their attitude says, "I told them what I wanted them to do. Now it is their responsibility to do it - without asking questions."
Informal authority: the personal influential power that comes as a result of others voluntarily granting their support. On occasion, all of us have encountered people who did not have the luxury of the energy of a position to fall back on. They may possibly have been assigned to labor in low profile, seemingly insignificant positions. Yet, in some amazing way, they had been able to successfully lead others to consistently above typical levels of efficiency. These people seemed capable of leading in spite of their positions and circumstance. How did they do it? How had been they able to entice others to voluntarily support them and their actions even although the organizational hierarchy may possibly have been stacked against them?
Merely put, they do so by committing themselves to helping their followers/supports get the items the followers/supporters can secure for themselves. People voluntarily pick to follower yet another individual due to the fact they ultimately think this particular individual, their chosen leader, can take them someplace that they would have in no way been able to reach on their own.
So how can we generate such a bond with our followers? Excellent leaders know the answer to that question. They work to know every of their followers as individuals. They ask their opinions. They listen to them. They permit their followers to disagree - even publicly, if essential. But they usually work to ensure that followers benefit in the finish. They use their authority and their common sense.