Charismatic Leadership In Organization Management Essay

In this competitive business environment, organization’s ability to perform profitably is dependent on the leaders, which are running the organization’s operations. In this fast-paced business world, an organization faces many muddy paths that must be crossed to attain success. Behind every organization’s success, there is clear, important leadership, which is appropriate to the situation. Generally, an individual who guides, motivate and foster a group of people to meet a target is termed as a leader. Timothy & Gian, in 2007 argued, “Leaders need to be trusted by their followers because trust is the mortar that binds the follower to the leader”. They further mentioned that trust is directly related to the outcome of an organization’s performance.

Charisma definition:

Charisma is defined as a certain quality of an individual personality, by good quality of which he is bless from ordinary men and treated as gifted with supernatural, superhuman, or at least specially brilliant powers or qualities.


Leadership is a process by which a person influences others to reach an objective and directs the organization in a way that makes it more unified and logical Leaders carry out this process by applying their leadership attributes, such as beliefs, values, ethics, character, knowledge, and skills. 

Professor Adair in 1984 developed a concept of leadership based on appropriate behaviour rather than personality or of being in the right place at the right time and focused the model in the needs of task, group and individuals in order to meet with the total situation model.

Charismatic leadership:

Charismatic leadership may be political, business, religious fields. Charismatic leadership is leadership based on the leader’s ability to communicate and behave in ways that reach followers on a basic, emotional way, to inspire and motivate. Charismatic people have an extraordinary ability to condense complex ideas into simple messages. Charismatic leaders are pictured as organizational heroes or magic leaders, who have the social power basis to organize, launch new enterprises, inspire organizational renewal, and obtain extraordinary performance from organizational members. These leaders inspire trust, faith and belief in them. Of course none of this is a guarantee that the mission will be correct, ethical, or successful.

Max Weber introduced the concept of charisma to account for the process by which radical change is brought about and legitimized in societies and organizations (Weber, 1922; 1947; 1968).. Since Weber, the sociological literature on charisma has attended to the introduction and reutilization of radical change induced by charismatic leader’s societies (Bendix, 1985; Dow, 1969; Eisenstadt, 1968; Friedland, 1964; Trice and Beyer, 1986). Several sociologically oriented scholars argue that charismatic leadership can also emerge and be effective in formal, complex organizations (Dow, 1969; Shils, 1965; Beetham, 1974; Bryman, 1992; Etzioni, 1961).

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Figure : Charismatic Leader

Beliefs and Attributes:

I m going to discus two beliefs and attributes of leaders behaviour that are involved in charismatic leadership.


Inspiration requires a mission to which the leader is dedicated and which has a moral or ethical base. It comes from leader behaviours of, displaying empathy, sensitive to follower’s needs, fears, wants, and dramatizing the mission.


Followers must be confident in their abilities. Empowerment comes from leader behaviours of assuring followers of their competency, and providing followers with opportunities to experience success. Three indirect means of doing so are participative management; removing obstacles and seeing others succeed.

Charismatic leaders:

John F. Kennedy

Arguably, the most charismatic President of the United States, John F. Kennedy came from a powerful family and was blessed with good looks in addition to his personal charisma.

Due to the charismatic and stylish couple – John and Jackie – the Kennedy White House became known as Camelot.  Alan Jay Lerner, Kennedy’s Harvard classmate, even wrote a hit song “Camelot” for the Broadway musical, which was a personal favorite of President Kennedy.

Charles Manson

Charismatic leaders could also use their influence for less-than-honourable purposes; the classic example of this abuse is Charles Manson.

Some people believe it was a combination of the drug LSD coupled with Manson’s charismatic personality that allowed him to manipulate others.  In the end Susan Atkins along with other members of the Manson family were found guilty of the murder of the 26-year-old movie actress Sharon Tate and four others.

Andrija Stampar (1888 – 1958)

(Brown and Fee 2006) present Andrija Stampar as one of the most charismatic and beloved figures in 20th century public health. His most rewarded contribution was the role played in the creation of the world health organization. (WHO). Stampar was also appointed for the WHO’s constitution which was provisionally adopted until formal ratification. He was then elected president of the organization and remained active until his dead.

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Herb Kelleher

“Herb Kelleher, co-founder, CEO, President and Chairman of Southwest

Airlines is cited in this article as an ideal example of charismatic

Leadership at its best. A discussion of charismatic leadership focuses

On traits and behaviours of charismatic leaders. This model is then

Used to examine Kelleher’s traits and behaviours at Southwest Airlines,

named in 1998 as the best place to work in America by Fortune.

Charismatic leadership examples and explanation:

Herb believes that the attitude of the entrepreneur effects

the early success of the project, the same attitude needs to be

present in the firms employees to continue the entrepreneurial energy

That creates competitive advantage in the operation of the business

even after, it has become a large successful company. In doing this

Herb’s Southwest Air has shown itself to be one of the rare companies

that has succeeded on translating the entrepreneurial spirit of its

Initial small company success into an effective form of on going

Corporate entrepreneurship that still invigorates it today.

Southwest Air has consequently applied this emphasis in hiring people

with the right entrepreneurial attitude. Herb sums up his view on this

subject with the simple maxim: ‘You hire attitude, everything else can

be trained.'”

The Southwest story is now a business legend: how the airline began

in 1966 with 195 employees and three planes that flew from Dallas’s

Love Field to Houston and San Antonio; how Kelleher and cofounder

Rollin King drew up the business plan on a cocktail napkin; how its

profit-sharing plan has made many long time employees millionaires; how

the company has grown to 29,000 employees with a fleet of 332 Boeing

737 planes (290 more are on order) and become a national carrier

competing with United, American, and Delta.”

Charismatic leadership may not be necessary to be an efficient leader. Relying on charisma to lead also can be problematic. For example, there have been many charismatic leaders who lack other leadership characteristics and skills and lead their followers into situations that turn out awfully think political leaders such as Stalin, Hitler, and even business leaders.

Firstly, i will discuss that charismatic leadership is always appropriate in organisation. Secondly, i will go against and conclusion will be stated at the end

Good leaders are not those who have the perfect followers, the true leaders are those who produce good leaders. Charismatic leaders inspire others and encourage them to be their best. Employees and group members want to impress a charismatic leader, so they work hard and struggle to succeed. However, charismatic leadership does not show positive impact always; it has its own negatives. India’s largest corporate fraud was lead by Mr. Ramalinga Raju who was one of the most effective and charismatic leader who lead sat yam group of companies all the way to one of the top it solution companies in India. Under charismatic leadership, group members may view success in relation to their leaders. Leaders have used their personal charisma in extremely destructive and damaging ways throughout human history, for example, Adolf Hitler and Jim Jones.

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Charismatic leaders tend to be very good listeners and great information gatherers. Charismatic Leaders use a wide range of methods to manage their image. Charismatic leaders create a sense of purpose for their organization that is motivating and inspiring. Charismatic leaders express things simply so that everyone gets it; they use positive language, often use stories, symbols, metaphors to get their point across. Drama assignments, writing assignments, sports-related tasks, art projects these activities could be very successful when led by a charismatic person. For example, Barack Obama and Mother Teresa they all lead by reaching out to human emotion and grasping their trust, gaining their respect and loyalty, maybe even encouraging them to do whatever the leaders tell them to.


I have referenced several times earlier in my examples, there is certainly a downside to charismatic leadership when it is used unethically. Thankfully, that is not at all the case with Herb Kelleher, who is mentioned throughout, widely respected and revered as a great, successful, and ethical charismatic leader.

I have discussed the benefits and disadvantages of charismatic leadership in an organization. After looking at both of the sides, it may be suggested that not always charismatic leadership is appropriate in organizations. However, it plays an important role to be a good leader. Charismatic leaders can engage in unconventional behaviour that can be shocking or surprising. Very important that charismatic leaders are able to articulate their vision, they understand the followers’ needs, so they can act as motivating force.

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