March 16, 2014

'Carrots and Sticks' Style

I came across and adage that says “what get measured gets done”. This is the watchword of a leader who adopts the carrots and stick approach in particular the Transactional leader. One can’t deny the fact that in some context it might be ideal especially from my past experience in organisation I witness a lot of leaders either directly using this style or indirectly and they have achieved the desired result. Reading through the transactional leadership style, the thought that came to my mind was that how sustainable is this approach in driving an organisation towards its long term goals and vision?

I learnt during the module that is either you treat your employees as an asset or view them as just human resources or I think any organisational leader that adopts the transactional approach is likely to view employees as human resources.

A transactional leader who is notable for is carrot and stuck approach either offers his employees some nice carrot if they perform above his expectation, don’t offer them carrot if they perform within expectation; (thinks after all it’s their job) then offers them a ‘wide variety of stick’ (public scolding or shows them the fire exit) if they don’t perform up to expectation. As easy as this approach tends to provide a short run success but not a long run sustainability of such an organisation. Personally I believe that if a leader is to adopt this approach, he should use various reward medium from group reward to a simple thank you and respect, then the stick approach should be a last resort when all other corrective effort have failed and should be used in such a way that it won’t be glorified to become a watchword for employees.

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