Sample Leadership Studies Essays on Followership

Followership can be defined as the willingness to cooperate in working towards the achievement of goals previously defined while at the same time demonstrating proper quality in terms of interactive teamwork. Followership is achievable by having effective followers that tend to be active in terms of participation and the creation of the leadership process. Followers, therefore, allow leaders to be creative and stay in control of productive, efficient, and people oriented situations. Followership demonstrates the ability and capacity of followers to willingly follow a leader.

Leadership and followership are considered an intertwined matter because effective followers bring forth effective leadership behavior while effective leaders bring out good followers from their employees (Baker). Followership is, therefore, the backbone of leadership since without followers, there would be no leaders. For projects and organization in any business, there is need for people who are willing and effectively ready to follow just like there are those who are willing to lead (Khan et al.). Any group with the best leaders and followers bring forth the best results but it all is dependent on the behavior of both the leaders and the followers.

Followership takes courage and integrity from both leaders and followers. Followers more often feel the need for these qualities due to their subordinate positions. Followers, therefore, need to know what they stand for and the need to communicate their ideas and opinions in regard to their leaders even if it means the risk of losing a job (Khan et al.). The ability to take risks could otherwise be defined as having the courage to assume responsibility, thus helping the follower to assume ownership in an organization and what it stands for. Ownership could be achieved by employees understanding that their personal behaviors and traits could affect the organization. They will then take the responsibility to pursue personal growth without depending on the leader (Goffee and Gareth). Followers should also have the courage to challenge a leader, for example, in case of a bad idea or incentive, the follower should be able to tell the leader off.

Followers also need leaders with clear goals and direction. Leaders need the ability to clearly dictate and communicate the direction and reasons behind the team and its projects. Followers want leaders with clearly defined directions that leave no room for ambiguity (Suda). Clear goals help the followers to focus their energy and attention towards achieving them, thus a feeling of accomplishment and pride after achieving them.

Big names such as Bill Gates and Oprah Winfrey did not raise their empires by themselves. They had whole workforce that they led with their preferred leadership styles (Gibbons & Bryant). These were dedicated workers who were led into successful empires, which means they run their organization well. As much as Bill Gates was the founder of Microsoft, he could not have achieved as much as he has if he did not have followers (Richards). In addition, for one to be a good leader, he/she has to first become a follower. Doctors, for example, are looked at by the community as leaders but in real sense, they spend a considerable amount of time in training as followers who are accountable to the senior doctors. They are therefore molded through a process and are still answerable to their seniors and hospital committees even after they receive their licenses.

Works Cited

Baker, Susan D. “Followership: The Theoretical Foundation of a Contemporary Construct.” Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies 14.1 (2007): 50-60.

Gibbons, Andrew, and D. Bryant. “Followership: The Forgotten Part of Leadership.” Casebook 21.2 (2013): 12-13.

Goffee, Rob, and Gareth Jones. “15. Cameo: Authentic Followership in the Knowledge Economy.” Authentic Leadership: Clashes, Convergences, and Coalescences (2013): 208-219.

Khan, Sajjad Nawaz, Abdul Halim Busari, and Siti Mariam Abdullah. “The Essence of Followership: Review of the Literature and Future Research Directions.” Servant Leadership Styles and Strategic Decision Making. IGI Global, 2019. 148-170.

Richards, Dave. “Frightfully Disempowered Followership.” The Seven Sins of Innovation. Palgrave Macmillan, London, 2014. 147-160.

Suda, Lawrence. “In Praise of Followers.” Project Management Institute, 2013.