Primary Task Response: Within the Discussion Board area, write 350–500 words that respond to the following questions with your thoughts, ideas, and comments. This will be the foundation for future discussions by your classmates. Be substantive and clear and use examples to reinforce your ideas.

This week, the discussion will focus on contingency theory. This theory has been most recognized by the work of Fiedler. Research the work of Fiedler on contingency theory, and respond to the following questions:

  • What is      your understanding of contingency theory? 
  • Why is      authentic leadership important to contingency theory?  
  • Describe      the differences and similarities of path-goal theory, Blanchard’s      situational theory approach, and Fiedler’s contingency theory

In addition to addressing all requirements of the assignments, model answer includes the following:

  • Contingency theory is based on the premise that leaders      understand the situation in which that they would be most effective.      Authentic leadership requires a commitment to undertaking a journey to      better understand oneself and leadership style.
  • Your answers may vary. However, theories are measuring      different things. Where Blanchard is measuring the overall effectiveness      of a leader’s ability to address each situation with the style needed to      be successful, Fiedler is measuring where the leader is most effective and      states that a leader is not effective in every situation.
  • There are similarities in the approach of assessing a      situation and recognizing potential gaps in subordinates and then applying      the leadership that would fill those gaps. Path-goal theory focuses on 4      varieties of leadership that are different from situational theory:      directive, supportive, participative, and achievement-oriented. Where      Blanchard focused on how situational theory provided the best leadership      for a specific situation, path-goal theory describes the influence on the      subordinates’ performance. 
  • Path-goal theory includes motivational theory, which is      important but is not an emphasis on Blanchard’s situational leadership      theory.
  • If leaders want to be effective, they must be able to      give subordinates what they need to compensate for the gaps in      subordinates’ abilities (these gaps are found in the subordinates’      characteristics) and make changes based on the type of tasks. The goal is      to use the leadership style that best motivates the employee to be      effective in his or her job.

Additional Resources:

  • Bayan, Y. F. (2018). Application of path-goal      leadership theory and learning theory in A learning organization. Journal      of Applied Business Research, 34(1), 13-22.
  • Bickle, J. T. (2017). Developing Remote Training      Consultants as Leaders-Dialogic/Network Application of Path-Goal      Leadership Theory in Leadership Development. Performance Improvement,      56(9), 32–39.
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