BA 421 Week 4 Discussion Followership Habits and Styles

Followership Habits and Styles


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Followership Habits and Styles

Effective leadership adds value to an organization by helping it accomplish the set organizational objectives and goals. However, for an effective leader to be successful, he/she requires his followers to be effective too. Traits of effective leadership match closely with traits of effective followership. The best followers are expected to be genuine, highly competent and credible the same way we expect the best leaders to behave.

Followers also play a significant role in the organization in that they collaborate with their leaders to achieve organizational success. Leaders are expected to provide direction, influence and motivation to their followers. On the other hand, leaders expect their followers to perform their duties well and achieve exceptional results. Hence it can be deduced that leadership and followership is a mutual relationship and it is impossible for one to exist without the other (Baker, 2007).

There are a lot of expectations leaders have on their followers. Followers must be there for leaders to exist. For an organization to succeed, its employees must effectively and willingly follow their leaders the same way there must be someone who is willing to lead. One can either be a leader or a follower but one cannot be both at the same time. Followership and leadership are roles one can shift into or out of depending on the prevailing conditions. Everyone-even the leaders- takes the role of followership at some point in time.

There is a difference between leadership and followership. Leaders lead by establishing new paths where necessary in order to achieve their goals whereas followers wait for explicit directives from their supervisors. For an individual to lead he/she must be decisive because employees want to follow leaders who command authority. Leaders are driven by passion and even at times they surpass their own expectations. Followers on the other hand are rarely passionate.


Baker, S. (2007). Followership: The theoretical foundation of a contemporary construct. Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies, 14, 50-60.

Uhl-Bien, M., Riggio, R., Lowe, K., & Carsten, M. (2014). Followership theory: A review and research agenda. The Leadership Quarterly, 25, 83-104.

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