The effectiveness of an organization depends directly on the person who stands at the head of the company. Leadership is a type of managerial cooperation, based on the most productive for a given situation combination of different power sources and aimed at inducing people to a common goal. For the competent management of the company, the leader needs a qualitative analysis of the existing circumstances in the firm and the correct selection of the business strategy for the future. Combining the skills of a leader and a manager is the key to the successful functioning of an organization and the development of its competitive advantage in a dynamic environment. Steve Jobs left a significant mark not only on Apple but on history as a whole. He developed the company and at the same time developed with it as a person. He was a demanding leader, asking his subordinates a high degree of compliance with his ideas in the business, the high quality of all work. All these aspects confirm that analyzing the history of Jobs’ path in the industry is fundamental to a deeper study of the subject.
The Role of the Leader in Ensuring Organizational Effectiveness
The effectiveness of an organization depends on several factors in which the leader occupies a significant part. These include communication, personnel, the external environment, and organizational change. Communication is about sending and receiving knowledge during interactions; employees need information because it ensures the quality performance of tasks and allows them to coordinate plans and intentions with management and those around them. For many subordinates, Jobs is remembered as an authoritarian leader who demanded that all his instructions be followed precisely to the smallest detail (Smith, 2019). At the same time, this approach to management, his desire to train people, and sharing his experience allowed the company to succeed. Thus, Jobs’ communication and personnel administration methods were effective for Apple’s progress and its development.
The role of the leader in managing external communications is essential in making the company productive. A manager needs to realistically assess the strengths of his partners and competitors and use their full potential to develop his organization. Jobs had a clear idea of choosing the right strategy to stay in a leading position in a competitive environment. He knew how to cope with difficult working moments and find valuable partners quickly. One relevant example is when in the 1980s, Jobs acquired a firm specializing in computer animation: the small company later became the world-famous Pixar (Gansky, 2017, p. 102). This act made him the largest shareholder in that organization. It also served as the starting point for his return to a senior management position at Apple, which he soon turned into one of the most expensive brands in the world. Such examples confirm that Jobs could build strategy ahead of time and react quickly to any changes in the company. He is the man who has influenced the organization’s results and gone through not only successful periods but difficult times as well. These skills are fundamental to organizational effectiveness in the future.
Exercising Leadership Power and Influence
The issues of leadership and power, leadership and influence, are closely related because the definition of leadership includes the idea of controlling others. A leader has social, psychological, emotional support in society or groups of people who follow him (Northouse, 2016, p. 10). Any leadership is a group phenomenon: only the presence of the workers turns an individual into a director. The main characteristic of the connection between the leader and followers is that it is a power relationship. Not all authority relations are connected with administration relations; nevertheless, the critical feature of leadership is power. People are more frequently influenced by those who have character features that they admire and those who are role models for them. The effective functioning of organizations depends directly on the willingness of subordinates to recognize the authority – the power of their leader.
The essence of a leader’s existence, his purpose, is to motivate team members to achieve a goal. Any of his actions, coordinating, motivating, training, and development, are implemented through one or another power mechanism, with the help of one or another instrument of influence. Steve Jobs wasn’t always right, but he knew how to convince people that he was. Jobs created a field of reality distortion, through which he made his point of view irrefutable fact in the eyes of the interlocutor, which often ensured the company a successful result (Smith, 2019). Jobs radically changed the opponent’s views with whom he was talking, proficiently handling facts, figures, estimates, and other information. Under this pressure were not only rank-and-file employees of Apple but also the company’s top managers, investors, and shareholders. The company’s founder was an excellent entrepreneur and manager with a capacity for persuasion. The totality of all these actions, their timely and competent application directly affects how effectively will work both employees and the organization.
Features and Requirements for Leadership Development for Competitiveness
At the current stage of management development, a significant amount of attention worldwide is paid to leadership and personal growth. In the most successful companies globally, leadership progress means systematic activity, to which the top managers of that company devote a lot of time. Facing and overcoming barriers, organizations rely heavily on effective administration. Nevertheless, news and analyses show that the most well-known firms often find themselves unable to adapt to change to implement strategic plans successfully. For this reason, to strongly exist in a competitive environment, it is essential to focus not only on experience but also to assess the current environment and plan for the future. The business sphere is constantly changing, so the leader must change along with it, adapt to the conditions, and direct the company forward.
The topic of leadership is becoming more and more popular worldwide. It is understandable: companies realize that the efficiency and success of their activity depending on how strong their leadership potential is. Organizations often try to solve problems with their existing management system instead of developing a new one according to their changing needs. For this reason, many young, innovative companies can withstand the competition, and for the same reason, many firms never make the changes they need. Accordingly, the main feature of leadership and, at the same time, the main requirement for its development is the ability and willingness to adapt. Other terms for leadership growth should identify the actions that need to be taken to maintain a competitive advantage. Competent management to enable an organization to implement the necessary business strategies requires deliberate planning, focused effort and persistence, significant investment, and patience. Steve Jobs had these skills and applied them wisely in administration. He was adaptable and forward-thinking, which not only allowed Apple to compete successfully with other companies but also to take a leadership position in the business field.
Evaluating the Organisation’s Strategic Effectiveness
Today, a growing number of managers and leaders are concerned about improving companies’ performance in the long term. Some reasons complicate this process, and the most problematic point is the lack of a unified and universal evaluation methodology. For this reason, it is essential not only to develop similar criteria for evaluating organizational performance but also to select unique ways depending on the object under study and its characteristics.
In terms of leadership, the company’s successful performance will depend on which tools its leader chooses and which aspects he will emphasize. To improve the organization’s activity quality, the leader should first pay attention to his subordinates and increase their productivity. In this case, the criteria for evaluation will be a definite end goal, competent specialists in the team, explicit norms and rules of conduct, and completion of all tasks on time (Northouse, 2016, p. 369). A well-built strategy does not always ensure success; recently, policy implementation and change management problems have come to the fore. For this reason, another important criterion a leader should pay attention to is the successful realization of the chosen strategy and its ability to adapt. These indicators will help not only to assess the effectiveness of the company but also to change future management policies, to exclude potential mistakes.
Each indicator should go through an evaluation procedure, after which the results are summarized. The assessment can take place in different ways: a survey of employees, a measurement of organizational performance, a compilation of formulas, and others. The obtained values can be interpreted as a change in strategic effectiveness concerning the previous period or any other basis for comparison. The proposed assessment methodology applies to many companies; an essential requirement for the applicability of this approach is knowing the organization’s business model, the ability to characterize it with critical variables. Apple maintains various reports on its activities: specialists conduct both internal and external independent evaluations of programs and products to ensure their usefulness and effectiveness (Apple, Inc., 2021). This method helps not only to make changes to the current policy but also to follow all new trends and adjust the business to them.
The face of an organization is defined by its employees – who they are, how they work, and what they can do. A successful company is characterized by the motivation of workers to lead and the desire to develop the necessary skills. It requires the manager to be a leader himself and to be able to direct the team. The effectiveness of an organization’s strategy is a multi-level concept that includes various aspects. A company needs to be guided by previous experience, assess the current situation, and develop future tactics in a competitive environment. The leader should use all the tools, especially the power and influence. The effective functioning of organizations directly depends on whether employees will recognize the leader’s authority and perform the tasks assigned. Jobs’ administration techniques will be discussed many times in textbooks on management, marketing, and psychology. He not only changed the world of technology and led Apple to success but also taught his subordinates and closest people to go to their goals, believe in themselves, and achieve results.
Apple, Inc. (2021) Remembering Steve Jobs.
Gansky, A. E. (2017) Myths and legends of the anti-corporation: a history of Apple, Inc., 1976–1997. Doctoral dissertation. The University of Texas at Austin.
Northouse, P. G. (2016) Leadership: theory and practice. California: Sage.
Smith, D. (2019) ‘The Steve Jobs guide to manipulating people and getting what you want‘, Insider.