Monday (1979) found that the leadership of 65 elementary school principals in dealing with four decisions was related to their self-confidence, and that the principals were more likely to be persuasive if they were self-confident. Conversely, Spins and La ones (1962) results indicated that supervisors who lacked self-confidence were significantly less willing than self-confident supervisors to hold face-to-face discussions with subordinates and more often attempted to solve problems by using administrative rules or by offering subordinates to a superior for a decision.
According to Kaplan (1986), self-confidence weighed heavily in distinguishing general managers who performed effectively from those who did not. The effective ones were seen as personally secure, communicating their confidence to others, and decisive, while the ineffective managers were characterized by personal insecurity and unwillingness to make tough decisions or risk making enemies. Moreover, self-confidence affects the way of influencing others.Those who feel confident are likely to use rewards and promises while those who lack elf-confidence are more likely to use coercion (Spins and Lane, 1 962; Goodliest and Spins, 1970). In a recent study conducted in the Israel Defense Forces (DIF) (Popper et al 2004), the general notion of “self-confidence” was personalized by three specific variables: (1) low trait anxiety (Spielberg, 1 972); (2) general self-efficacy (Chem. and Gully, 1997, Chem. et al.
, 2001 and (3) internal locus of control (Rooter, 1966). 67 668 A person characterized by a high level of trait anxiety will presumably have difficulty functioning effectively when exposed to streamers and situations of uncertainty (Carson, 1975), while individuals with low trait anxiety will function successfully in changing and stressful situations that may frequently be encountered by people in leadership roles. The link between self-efficacy and ability to lead seems self-evident.
People who believe in themselves and in their abilities to perform tasks successfully are better suited to leadership roles than those who do not believe in themselves and in their capacities to affect the world.Studies have indeed shown that this self-belief is significant in the context of leadership (Gibbons, 1986; Cotter, 1988; Schemers et al. 2000; Murphy, 2002). Internal locus of control reflects a general attitude that outcomes in the world depend on the self. It is a general attitude rather than a belief in specific behaviors and specific outcomes like the “self-efficacy/’ variable. We assume that leadership relies on such a general belief regarding the possibility of influencing events rather than relying on factors outside oneself (luck, fate).
This claim is consistent with the argument of leadership scholars that one of the essentials of leadership is taking initiatives and changing the status quo (Bennie and Anus, 1985; Cotter, 1988). Indeed, a series of studies on managers’ locus of control found that those with an internal locus of control tended to adopt more innovative and daring organizational strategies, showed more self-confidence in their ability to influence their environment, coped better with stressful situations, and ultimately achieved higher organizational performance than managers with an external locus of control (Miller et al. 1982; Miller and TOLL_SSE, 1986). The findings of the study conducted in the Israel Defense Forces (Popper et al. , 2004) revealed significant differences between leaders and non-leaders over all the variables hat were defined as self-confidence.
Leaders evinced more internal locus of control, a lower level of anxiety, and a higher level of self-efficacy. The different aspects comprising the notion of self-confidence have a certain genetic origin (Palomino, 1990). Neurotics, in particular, which is highly correlated with low self-esteem, has a strong genetic basis (Rowe, 1999).
However, ample evidence suggests that environment, and particularly child rearing practices that affect the capacity to regulate negative emotions, are also strongly implicated in promoting self-confidence (Bandmaster, 1999). As mentioned, self-confidence is necessary, but is not by itself a sufficient condition for a person to become a socialized leader. We contend that to become a socialized leader additional aspects must exist, of which care for others, optimism, and openness are essential.
We will now discuss these variables and explain their centrality to being a (socialized) leader. Care for others (a pro-social orientation) One of the salient differences be;en personalized and socialized leaders lies in the way they treat others. The former use others as a source for self- gerrymandering (House and Howell, 1 992; popper, 2000, 2001, 2002), while hose classified as socialized leaders are guided by moral values such as justice or integrity (see Burns, 1978) and tend to encourage the personal development of their followers (Bass, 1985).Socialized leadership (which includes a distinct and widely studied category known as “transformational leadership”; see, for example, Bass, 1 985) is analogous in many respects to good parenthood. Popper and Masseuses (2003) reviewed studies on parenting and compared them with studies on transformational leadership. They found a strong resemblance between the practices and effects Of good parents and of transformational leaders.
One of the main similarities was the caring attitude and warmth and nurture characteristic both of good parents and of socialized leaders, especially transformational ones.For example, a study by Clover (1990) reported transformational leaders to be higher than other types of leaders in measures such as nurture, and lower in measures such as aggression and criticism. Ross and Freeman (1997) reported negative correlations between measures of critical parenting, aggression and criticism, and transformational leadership. Rough and Atwater (1992) reported that transformational leaders ranked higher as sensing and lining types than as thinking types.That is, they ranked higher as people who placed greater emphasis on human relations, on the importance Of others’ attitudes, on concern for their welfare, and on promoting an atmosphere of openness, than as people who emphasized logical, analytical, and impersonal thinking. Recently, Judge and Bono (2000) reported that among the Big Five traits, agreeableness – defined as being kind, gentle, trusting, altruistic, and warm – proved the strongest and most consistent predictor of transformational leadership.
We argue that socialized leaders have a stronger motivation to give (a pro- social orientation) and are capable of giving in an empathetic and sensitive way, similar to that of good parents (Popper and Masseuses, 2003). Research into the precursors of such pro-social orientations (Kahn-Waxier et 1986; Van-Lange et al. , 1997) indicates that the capacity to give is based on genetic as well as on environmental factors (Kahn-Waxier et al 2001).For example, studies on parenting showed that parents who are warm, sensitive, and attentive to their children’s needs, who employ positive internal attributions for proboscis deeds, are not coercive in their disciplinary actions, and who homeless model empathetic and pro-social behavior towards their offspring and others, raise children who are more empathetic, concerned with others’ welfare, and have both the motivation and the capacity to help others (see review by Cruses and Dixie, 1986).Proactive optimistic orientation One of the consistent characteristics in descriptions of leaders is their ability to present a vision of the future, to point to a new way, and to transmit inspiring messages (Uniform and Strange, 2002). This theme appears in all the biographies of outstanding leaders (Burns, 1978; Bass, 1985; Gardner, 1995). To maintain a future-oriented outlook, to formulate it in terms of a vision, and to be convinced of the prospects of its success, thereby sweeping others along, a person has to be optimistic.A number of studies have dealt with the correlation between leadership and optimism.
For example, a study that examined optimism and pessimism among business leaders found that the former positively predicted the ability to form a shared vision and to encourage action driven by emotion (Wonderful et al. , 1998; George, 2000). Schemers et al. (2000) found positive correlations between Optimism and level f leadership in officer cadets as evaluated by their military instructors.