Agenda 4 | Application and Benefit of Theory In Action
Agenda 5 | Pros & Cons
Agenda 6 | Future Potential of Path-Goal Theory
Leaders create a path to success by increasing personal payoffs to subordinates for workgoal attainment, and making the path to these payoffs easier to travel, by clarifying it, reducing roadblock and pitfalls, and increasing the opportunities for personal satisfaction en route.
Path-Goal Theory Defined
R.J. House (1974)
Research, Experiments & Meta-Analysis
Theorized that both the leader and follower's personality must be considerd for Path-Goal Theory to be appropriatley applied (Bass, 1974, p. 808).
Most well known Path-Goal Theorist, House has published numerous findings in suport of this theory. He is the first to offically define the theory and later to revise the theory.
First to tie leader behaviors and intiating structure with follower perceptions and assess their effects on outcomes (House, 1996).
Vroom's Expectany Theory of Motivation
Theory is molded by Vroom's Expectancy Theory which states employees are motivated if they think they can accomplish a goal, will see results and they percieve the reward is worth their effort (Northouse, 2019, p. 118).
Georgopolous, Mahoney, & Jones
Earliest version of Path-Goal Theory focusing on leaders need to "point out the paths to sucessful effort" (Bass, 1974, p. 805).
Neider & Schriesheim
First to directly test and support the hypothesis that as long as a leader provids constant support, the initation of structure didn't affect follower satisaction (Bass, 1974, p. 806).
Created the first Path-Goal Model (Bass, 1974, p. 810).
Revised the Path-Goal Theory to include 8 classes of leader behavior expanding it from the original 4 (House, 1996),
Advanced the theory by adding subordinate's locus of control affected the application of the Path-Goal Theory (Bass, 1974, p. 809).
Indvik, House & Mitchell, Schriesheim & Kerr, House & Dressler, and Szilagyi & Sims all worked to further define & test the Path-Goal Theory to find both supportive and non-supportive results of the theory.
Key Elements of Path-Goal Theory
Group Oriented Decision Process
Representation & Networking
Value Based Leadership
Locus of Control
Preference for Structure
(House, 1996) (Northouse, 2019, p. 123) (Northouse, 2019, p. 123)
Goals & Productivity
Based on Figure 6.2 in Northhouse, 2019, p. 119.
1. If the leader behavior reduces role ambiguity for a given task/goal, then subordinate satisfation will increase (Bass, 1974, p. 806).
2. If subordinates are autonomous, satisfaction will increase if the leader's behavior is less directive and more supportive (Bass, 1974, p. 806).
3. The narrower the scope of the task, leader support and consideration is more important in increasing subordinate satisfaction & performance than being directive (Bass, 1974, p. 806).
4. When tasks are unstructured, leader behavior which helps clarify the task & expectations are needed (Bass, 1974, p. 806).
5. Subordinate's satisfaction will decrease when leader behavior is too directive with redundant, clear tasks and can make leader seem overbearing (Greene, 1979, p. 25).
6. Supportive leadership style during mundane & highly structured tasks can improve subordinate satisfaction by offseting the frustrating nature of repetitive work (Greene, 1979, p. 24).
Bachelor's of Nursing (BSN, RN)
Working on her Master's in Nursing
Director of Emergency Room
Always on time to the many meetings she has while serving on multiple committees at the hospital.
Based on the follower and task characteristics, which leader behavior is the best one to initate?
Reduce amount of time patient's wait in the ER waiting room from 60 minutes to under 30 minutes.
APPLICATION IN THEORY
(Northouse, 2019, pg. 123) and (House, 1996, p. 323)
Ideal Model of Application in Motion
(Neider & Schriedsheim, 1988 as cited in Bass, 2008, p. 810)
PROS & CONS
Provides leaders with 8 tactics or types of leadership styles to use and when to use them depending on the subordinate's needs and task or goals that are trying to be achieved. (Northouse, 2019, p. 124).
Creates a framework for leaders to listen to their subordinates and act in their best interest depending on the task. Creates a colaborative and shared victory when goals are achieved for leaders and subordinates. Based on the follower's needs to be satisfied in their work (Northouse, 2019, p. 124).
In theory, improves leader's ability to motivate their subordinates to sucessfully complete tasks by taking into account the characteristics of the task at hand when initiating the structure and determining the leadership tactic to use (House, 1996, p. 323).
Highly complex and dependent on the personality of follower along with task characteristics. This could leave the leader to overly flex their style to meet follower's needs (Northouse, 2019. p 125).
Limited empirical evidence and limited support. Needs additional experiments and research to determine its proposed success (Northouse, 2019, p. 125).
Very leader centric and puts main responsibility of follower's achievement at the leader's feet instead of creating a shared responsibility (Northouse, 2019, p. 126).
Little recent or relevant work has been done to continue researching and refining the Path-Goal Theory since House's theory revision (Schriesheim & Neider, 1996, pg. 317).
Potential to incorporate newer styles of leadership into a Path-Goal Theory application model.
Future Forecast of Path-Goal Theory
In 2008, Vecchio, Justin and Pearch suggested Transactional and Transformational Leadership could be utilized in a Path-Goal Theory framework to predict which leader behavior is best used to maximize subordinate satisfaction & performance (Vecchio, Justin & Pearce, 2008, p. 80).
Thank You for Your Time!
Bass, B. M., & Bass, R. (2008). The Bass handbook of leadership (4th ed.). New York, New York: Free Press.
Greene, C. N. (1979). Questions of Causation in the Path-Goal Theory of Leadership. Academy Of Management Journal, 22(1), 22-41. doi:10.2307/255476
House, R. J. (1996, Fall96). Path-goal theory of leadership: Lessons, legacy, and a reformulated theory. Leadership Quarterly. p. 323.
Northouse, P. G. (2019). Leadeship theory and practice (8th ed.). Los Angeles, California: Sage.
Schriesheim, C. A., & Neider, L. L. (1996). Path-goal leadership theory: The long and winding road. Leadership Quarterly, 7(3), 317.
Vecchio, R. P., Justin, J. E., & Pearce, C. L. (2008). The utility of transactional and transformational leadership for predicting performance and satisfaction within a path-goal theory framework. Journal Of Occupational & Organizational Psychology, 81(1), 71-82.