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    Authentic Leadership: Old or New?

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    Post  Tet Soriano on Fri 22 Oct 2010, 12:26 pm


    Thank you for sharing your critiques of the theory with us.
    I also agree that the theory is just a combination of old theories because reading about Wong's article, I realized that it is just back to basics. It is just a new combination of the basic theories.

    According to Sanderson(2009), a 360 values based feedback assessment can help you measure how authentic you really are, what your strengths are, what they'd like you to improve and your range of flexibility in styles of leadership.Searching for tools to measure authenticity, I can hardly find one. Truly it is difficult to measure authenticity but a tool or an instrument may be developed.

    Reference:

    Sanderson, R. Authentic Leadership - The Values of Measuring How Are You Perceived. Retrieved July 24, 2009, from http://ezinearticles.com/?Authentic-Leadership---The-Values-of-Measuring-How-Are-You-Perceived&id=2656468.
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    Post  aimee on Fri 22 Oct 2010, 11:32 am

    Yes, I agree that the theory is a combination of concepts of old leadership theories, but the whole packaging is unique because the elements extracted from the old ones have essential bearing. Combined together, it paved the way to the advent of a leadership style at its best.

    Authentic leadership may not be the only solution to various problems in our current diversified society, for the theory, as stated by Wong and Cumming, has flaws and weaknesses. On the other hand , the authors have likewise emphasized that it is the root construct of positive forms of leadership, therefore it has been developed as a leadership style at its best.


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    Post  mariekathleensantos on Fri 22 Oct 2010, 11:21 am

    Avolio et al. (2005) claimed that the intent of the authentic leadership model was notto develop another new theory for leadership. In fact,the concept of authentic leadership may be a return to fundamental aspects of leadership.Avolio et al.’sgoal was to investigate the common core of all leadershiptheories to discover, test,and explain the essence ofauthentic leadership intrinsic to a wide varietyof leadership approaches. With this statement, I agree withyour assumption that authentic leadership is a combination of the establishedleadership styles but to make it more comprehensible, authentic leadership isthe combination of the common core values of other styles.
    Adequate instruments forexclusivelymeasuring authentic leadership are notyet available; however,empirical research to identify markersof authenticleadership1 and toadvance thedevelopmentof instruments to measure it2 are in progress. Instruments that measure some elements of authenticityare theServant LeadershipBehavior Scale3 and the MultifactorLeadership Questionnaire4 used to measuretransformational leadership. Authentic, servant, andtransformational leadershipstyles have distinct differences,5 and thus the instruments cited may not be adequate proxies to measure authenticleadership.
    Pittinsky TL, Tyson CJ. Leader authenticity markers: findings from a study of African-American leaders. Available at: http://www.ksg.harvard.edu
    /leadership/workingpapers.html. AccessedMarch 1, 2006.

    Avolio BJ, Gardner WL, Walumbwa FO, Luthans F, May DR. Unlockingthemask: a look at the process bywhich authentic leaders impact followerattitudes and behaviors. Leadersh Q. 2004;15:801-823.
    Sendjaya S. Development and validation of Servant LeadershipBehavior
    Scale. Available at: http://www.regent.edu/acad/sls/publications/conference
    _proceedings/servant_leadership_roundtable/2003/proceedings.htm. Accessed March 13, 2006.
    Bass BM, Avolio BJ. Full Range Leadership Development: Manual for the
    Multifactor Questionnaire. Palo Alto, Calif: Mind Garden; 1993.
    Avolio BJ, Gardner WL. Authenticleadership development: getting to theroot of positive forms of leadership. Leadersh Q. 2005;16:315-338.
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    Post  roseanne.catalan on Fri 22 Oct 2010, 3:49 am

    flower
    AC Ver wrote:
    I think if there will be any more measure that will be developed in the near future, it still won’t be precise in measuring a person’s true self-awareness because authenticity is very specific not only to every individual but also to every trait and beliefs that that person possess. Its ambiguity and wide-scoped nature wouldn’t certainly be measured with merely a single tool or index.

    I am also doubtful with the idea of finally generating instrument that would measure self-awareness or authenticity accurately. Something that involves belief, culture, ethics and moral which are subjective can be very hard to measure though I am optimistic with the idea that further research can be a key to develop instrument which can measure authenticity that is close to accurate. bounce
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    Post  roseanne.catalan on Fri 22 Oct 2010, 3:35 am

    flower

    therese_132409 wrote:not at all. i think the authors of the article just place value or acknowledgement to the old theories and able to find and assert some gaps because some leadership theories in the past are broad, that's what the authors said.

    If am correct with my understanding of literatures pertaining to authentic leadership, what drove the creation of this theory was the continuous need to respond to a call for a better nursing environment, perhaps because the old theories might not be enough to answer the call. Your statement that old theories are broad can somehow be a reason. Here's what I realized from reading your discussion paper: you can be authentic without considering the style of leadership you are using. The important thing that matter is, you have that genuine likeness to offer yourself to others. Like a Star @ heaven Like a Star @ heaven
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    Post  AC Ver on Fri 22 Oct 2010, 3:27 am

    I can agree with you that the authentic leadership theory is just derived from various existing leadership theories. It may not be labeled as ‘new’, but I can say that this theory has its way of being an improved version from the rest.

    It may be that self-awareness is measured as knowing one’s emotions, preferences, and intuitions and includes three competencies: emotional awareness, accurate self-assessment, and self-confidence but it for sure still is difficult to measure in observable terms. But I think followers can be able to assess a leader’s authenticity if he is open and is eager to listen to the feedback of what his members has to say. With this, the leader can work hard on developing self-awareness through persistent and courageous self-exploration. In addition, it is said that the Emotional Competency Inventory presents a way in assessing emotional competencies which is the capacity for recognizing our own feelings and those of others, for motivating ourselves and for managing emotions effectively in ourselves and others, which in turn contributes to effective performance at work (Wolff, 2005). But even with this, others still claim that there are no existing true measures of self-awareness (Cooper et al., 2005)

    I think if there will be any more measure that will be developed in the near future, it still won’t be precise in measuring a person’s true self-awareness because authenticity is very specific not only to every individual but also to every trait and beliefs that that person possess. Its ambiguity and wide-scoped nature wouldn’t certainly be measured with merely a single tool or index.

    References:

    1. Steven B. Wolff, DBA, 2005. Emotional Competence Inventory (ECI) Technical Manual. Hay Group McClelland Center for Research and Innovation November 2005.
    2. Cooper, C.D., Scandura, T.A. and Schriesheim, C.A. (2005), “Looking forward but learning from our past: potential challenges to developing authentic leadership theory and authentic leaders”, The Leadership Quarterly
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    Post  roseanne.catalan on Fri 22 Oct 2010, 3:12 am

    flower
    Charis Juan wrote:s.
    The Wong theory of authentic leadership, indeed, involves several abstract concepts which are difficult to measure.

    I agree that one of the weaknesses of the theory is the fact that it lacks measurability. I still stand with the fact that further research focusing only on one concept before testing the whole theory to improve its operational definition might be needed. bounce
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    Post  AntonJayTan on Fri 22 Oct 2010, 3:08 am

    I believe that the authentic theory by wong came from previous theories or concepts of leadership that was made. Wong only improve it and connected it to nursing
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    Post  roseanne.catalan on Fri 22 Oct 2010, 2:48 am

    flower

    PriNcE RJ wrote:
    Actually, when I read the "Authentic Leadership" by Wong and Cummings, I forgot that there was a hanging question in the title! Well maybe I got carried away by the contents of the theory.

    I would just want to ask, if Authentic Leadership is a compilation of other leadership theories, is it something negative?

    I think this Authentic Leadership theory is not a "merely impossible" theory but an ideal theory. A lot of things can be ideal without being perfect right?


    Thank you for the compliment! Very Happy

    We share the same feelings. I was also overwhelmed by the beauty of this theory. At first, I didn’t know where my stand was. I was jumping from pro, con, pro, con. But, like the irony of this theory, I think I am both pro and con.
    The way I wrote my discussion proves that combining old theories for a new concept is negative. Honestly, that was what I wanted to entail from the very start. However, reading others’ discussion paper made me realized that the idea of combining old theories alone is negative BUT the idea that it would create a new ideal idea or concept is something positive.
    What I mean by “nearly impossible” is few can meet the criteria of being authentic leader as it is a gift that requires passion and commitment. Few people, almost none I believe, possess that genuine way of offering his/herself. I don’t know, maybe I am just being pessimistic about it.



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    Post  roseanne.catalan on Fri 22 Oct 2010, 2:39 am

    flower
    edliwag wrote:
    The overlapping of the elements with other theories that resulted in formulating the core concepts for the model made it hard to understand.

    I think the theory is just loaded with so many concepts which made it hard to know where the focus really is. I agree the lack of existing instrument used to measure concepts like self awareness, ethics and moral can be the most solid gap that research need to fill out. Probably, the research should limit its focus on knowing how variables should be measured. bounce
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    Post  roseanne.catalan on Thu 21 Oct 2010, 11:55 pm

    flower

    chel_calvelo wrote:
    Indeed, that was a good discussion!. You have critique the article well. I totally agree with you that this is just a combination of the concepts of old leadership theory. Even though there are new concepts that was laid down, some of the ideas are gathered from the old forms of leadership.

    Thank you. After reading others' discussion, I've come to realize that yes, it is combination of old concepts which made the theory new. I think that authenticity can be the sole requirement of being an effective leader. We need to offer not only a portion of ourselves but ourself as a whole. I commend the theorist for coming up with this theory. Authenticity has long been known and unknown. We know it but we haven't realized the need to put it into words. bounce
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    Post  roseanne.catalan on Thu 21 Oct 2010, 11:26 pm

    flower

    cezzy wrote:
    However, though it came from different theories before, it is still considered a new concept with new style since it took an in-depth focus on factors that Wong thought is essential for a better leadership theory.



    Thank you for the commendation though I don’t feel very much confident with my paper.
    Yes, it is a new concept yet contains basic and old ideas. The creator of this theory tried to compress all the criteria of an effective leadership in one concise word. Authentic. This is the word that has long been hiding in between the lines of old theories. Finally, it emerged. This word is very basic yet complex. New yet old. That is the irony of it.

    I don’t refute the fact that theories are tentative, in fact it is forever tentative, my only point is that it lacks authentic instrument to measure authenticity to make the theory more valid. Perhaps further research that focuses only on one concept of authentic leadership is needed to further prove the consistency of the theory.
    bounce
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    Post  roseanne.catalan on Thu 21 Oct 2010, 10:55 pm

    flower

    ylaganroidah wrote: For me, I think it should be called more like an enhanced or revised category form of leadership.

    I second the motion. Reading other posts deepen my understanding of the main reason of this emerging theory. The irony is it is both old and new. It is reminding us to grow, be authentic without turning our back to basic. This emerging theory is only reminding us, as a nurse-leader, of one thing, we simply have to CARE. I love you
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    Post  roseanne.catalan on Thu 21 Oct 2010, 9:29 pm

    khayee_07 wrote:

    nevertheless, i think the theory tries to depict a very observable phenomena yet difficult to approach... i guess it doesn't really require all the mentioned qualities to be observed in a leader so as to be called authentic, but rather it gives a wider perspective on areas that can be address to by a leader in order to be an effective one; areas were problems usually arise and are usually taken for granted... Smile


    flower Yes, I agree with your statement that the theory is very observable, observable in a sense that you can observe it only with your feelings, your heart can see what your eyes can't. Yet difficult to approach, meaning it is very hard to measure because it is subjective in nature. On the other hand, I’m afraid to say yes, it needs all the mentioned qualities to be an authentic leader. But the qualities are very innate on the person, meaning he/she has those qualities without putting so much effort to have it. The person can't just help but to possess it, it is very much his/hers. That is the reason why I think, being a leader is like being a nurse. It is a gift. You need commitment and passion and you are ready to give yourself.
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    Post  therese_132409 on Thu 21 Oct 2010, 7:08 pm

    not at all. i think the authors of the article just place value or acknowledgement to the old theories and able to find and assert some gaps because some leadership theories in the past are broad, that's what the authors said. if a person think that hes perfect, then what needs to be improved? what needs to be explored more on him? so there's a part or characteristic of an individual to be found and developed. a person might not possess all the elements of authentic leadership,you can make him conscious of the element he doesn't have and able to acquire, put it into his system, and act on it little by little. an instrument i think just serves as a guide or basis to atleast conclude that a person possess authenticity. it could be a measurement objectively or subjectively.
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    Post  Charis Juan on Thu 21 Oct 2010, 12:33 am

    I admire Wong for attempting to make a theory for use in nursing practice. There aren’t enough literatures that focus on a theory to advance nursing leadership and practice. In my reaction paper, I mentioned the study made by Wood of authentic leadership, and leadership effectiveness in challenging environments like the military cadets. Wood defined certain concepts as integrity, altruism, grit and hardiness. She concluded, among others, that “(A)uthentic leadership attributes demonstrated incremental validity above transformational, transactional, and laissez-faire leadership, as well as the individual differences most associated with transformational leadership (extraversion and neuroticism) (Bono & Judge, 2004), conscientiousness, agreeableness, openness to experience, grit, and hardiness.

    The Wong theory of authentic leadership, indeed, involves several abstract concepts which are difficult to measure. Foremost is the concept of self-awareness, which is a basic principle in the theory. However, Wood, was able to measure abstract concepts in her work. The key, as you said, is to have a strong operational definition for the concepts. This, however, may be difficult to do.

    Considering its claimed difference from other leadership theories, it may well be worth testing the authentic leadership theory in nursing practice to know its effectiveness in nursing practice and to provide a basis for future research.
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    Post  PriNcE RJ on Thu 21 Oct 2010, 12:26 am

    Indeed, a short but meaty discussion. Actually, when I read the "Authentic Leadership" by Wong and Cummings, I forgot that there was a hanging question in the title! lol! Well maybe I got carried away by the contents of the theory.

    I would just want to ask, if Authentic Leadership is a compilation of other leadership theories, is it something negative? I have to admit, I haven't read a lot about the other leadership teories, but I think this Authentic Leadership theory is not a "merely impossible" theory but an ideal theory. A lot of things can be ideal without being perfect right? Well maybe I'm still drifting in the beautiful thoughts of this theory that's why I'm blinded by its flaws. Like a Star @ heaven Like a Star @ heaven Like a Star @ heaven
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    Post  edliwag on Wed 20 Oct 2010, 3:09 am

    The overlapping of the elements with other theories that resulted in formulating the core concepts for the model made it hard to understand. The title features the word Authentic which means unique so I guess the authors really wanted it to be that way. The focus on the leader-follower relationship would be understood more if it was limited to measurable elements to support what was being proposed in the model. Concepts like culture, values and belief definitely will yield different outcome when used as data since these elements vary. Self awareness was a good concept for the model as it encourages leaders to lead with a heart and compassion and I think is really applicable in the health care setting.
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    Post  chel_calvelo on Wed 20 Oct 2010, 2:07 am

    Laughing
    Indeed, that was a good discussion!. You have critique the article well. I totally agree with you that this is just a combination of the concepts of old leadership theory. As what I’ve said in my discussion, this emerging theory was just a derivation from the combination of both new theoretical perspective and earlier forms of leadership. Even though there are new concepts that was laid down, some of the ideas are gathered from the old forms of leadership. I think there is no such instrument that can measure authenticity aside from what is used in the research. If the future generations will continue this research in order to develop some of the concepts and test its validity, I honestly believe that authenticity can be measured. Nothing is impossible. You should have to search for the answers. What a Face lol!
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    Post  cezzy on Tue 19 Oct 2010, 10:43 pm

    First of all, I want to commend you for being able to critique Wong's work as a theory. cheers Nice thought!

    Yes, I agree that the proposed theory by Wong is a combination of concepts of all theories. However, though it came from different theories before, it is still considered a new concept with new style since it took an in-depth focus on factors that Wong thought is essential for a better leadership theory. According to Klein and White (Hanson, et al., 1998) as cited by Zerwekh, J. et al. (2006), theory is a mean to gather information, to more clearly and specifically identify ideas, to guide research, to show ideas are connected to each other, to make sense of what we observe or experience, to predict what might happen, and to provide answers. Thus, those ideas from the previous definition of authentic leadership is a way to criticize and direct a new research. Furthermore, rather than being conclusive and absolute, scientific theories are tentative and with new discoveries and experimental techniques, scientific theories are refined. Therefore, I can say that because scientific theories are not absolute, they invite critical analysis and direct new research. It is through testing and re-testing that a theory's central supposition may be strengthened, or even discredited.

    One tool that can be used is the Authentic Leadership Questionnaire (ALQ). It is a theory-driven leadership survey instrument designed to measure the components that have been conceptualized as comprising authentic leadership (Avolio, B.J., & Luthans, F., 2006). As of the moment that’s the only tool I’ve seen. With regard to the last question, despite the creation of a tool, in my opinion, it’s still hard to measure an authentic leader’s qualities through a quantitative analysis. Further studies need to be developed to broaden more the scope on the creation of proper measuring technique in identifyng an authentic leader. study


    References:

    Zerwekh, J. and Claborn, J. (2006). Nursing today: Transition and Trends. Saunders Elsivier, Westline Industrial Drive, St. Louis Missouri.

    Avolio, B.J., & Luthans, F. (2006). High impact leader: Moments matter in authentic leadership development. NY: McGraw-Hill.


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    Post  ylaganroidah on Tue 19 Oct 2010, 10:01 pm

    Yes, I do believe that this emerging theory is just a combination or an overlapping of the other concepts of the leadership theories because as the literature had shown there was a comparison between authentic leadership and other existing theories in leadership. That the authentic leadership is the root construct of positive forms of the other leadership theories. But somehow there are areas in which the authentic leadership had taken into consideration making it a new theory. For me, I think it should be called more like an enhanced or revised category form of leadership.

    Only the said, authentic leadership questionnaire, from what was mentioned in the literature is the one I know. But in the study of Walumbwa et al (2008) the structural equation modeling (SEM) demonstrated the predictive validity for the ALQ measure for important work-related attitudes and behaviors, beyond what ethical and transformational leadership offered. [Abstract]

    I think that authenticity can be measured using a descriptive data since it talks about qualities of a leader. It may be difficult to extract the real authenticity of a person if questionnaires are only the basis for it.
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    Post  khayee_07 on Tue 19 Oct 2010, 2:49 pm



    technically speaking yes, but not completely... Smile
    i would honestly say that i haven't read much enough about readings pertaining to authenticity in leadership or any writings that present it either in a different but somehow familiar way... all i can relate to were the articles i have read which i considered still few, mainly because few were able to make a clear declaration, stand and statement of their research... so i guess, its inappropriate for me to make that negative judgment...

    nevertheless, i think the theory tries to depict a very observable phenomena yet difficult to approach... i guess it doesn't really require all the mentioned qualities to be observed in a leader so as to be called authentic, but rather it gives a wider perspective on areas that can be address to by a leader in order to be an effective one; areas were problems usually arise and are usually taken for granted... Smile

    i don't know any instrument that can measure authenticity as far as my readings are concern except from the one mentioned in the theory....

    i don't think there is a way and instrument that could measure authenticity or any soft aspect of a person for that matter... but instead, instrument could be use to analyze effectiveness of such approach without giving precise or exact measurement of the data...
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    Post  roseanne.catalan on Tue 19 Oct 2010, 3:26 am

    flower
    Authentic Leadership: Old or New?

    A good theory according to (Francis, 2002) should be able to explain established observations, explain new observations, predict new observations, and be as simple as possible. It must also possess testability or falsifiability according to (Popper, 2000).
    In this discussion paper, I will attempt to give explanations why the theory of authentic leadership does not meet all the criteria of a good theory. Also, I will try to explain that this emerging theory is just combinations of concepts of old theories.

    1. Simplicity is beauty. Though authentic leadership theory meets some of the standards of a good theory it doesn’t meet the criteria of simplicity. It is very complex making it hard to remember. It has too many concepts that only show redundancy. Simple theories are preferred to more complex ones. If you can establish a theory that sets up four or five different rules or properties of materials that explain everything, that's much better than if you have to set up seven or eight or ten rules and then add a dozen different exceptions to those rules and so forth. (Francis, 2000)

    2. Nobody and nothing is perfect. The creator of the authentic leadership is trying to make a theory enough to respond to the call for strong, positive nursing leadership. But I don’t like the way the concepts were squeezed for the sake of placing all the elements of a good leader. That would be perfection, which nothing has. The research paper itself admitted that universal leadership theory containing all elements of effective leadership is unrealistic and ill advised.

    3. It is nearly impossible. Authentic leadership needs authentic leaders. According to the research paper, there are 4 elements of authenticity which the leader must possess to be an authentic leader. What if a leader lacks one? Is it possible that a leader possess all elements? Special mention to leader’s moral and ethical judgment. How can we be so sure that ethics and moral will not change overtime?

    4. How ethical is ethical? How can we operationally define ethical? Another question is, how universal is ethical? The theory assumed that the definition of authentic leadership is universal as being self aware or transparent or balanced (Walumbwa et al, 2008). Does definition of ethics and moral in a particular culture the same with another culture?

    5. Testability is the key. Self-awareness is the key concept that needs a strong operational definition. However, the instrument that suppose to measure self-awareness has not been validated yet. Validity is the degree to which an instrument measures what it is supposed to measure (Polit and Beck, 2006). If we cannot measure self-awareness then we cannot say the authentic leadership results to good nursing environment.

    6. Every leadership theory stressed that leader must have a heightened sense of self-awareness. Also, most of the leadership theory emphasize that a leader must be objective and unbiased in decision making. Being honest with oneself and others is one characteristics of some leadership style. These statements would denote that concepts involve in the authentic leadership were already describe in the some old theories of leadership.

    7. Choose one. My suggestion is to choose only one concept to study. Choose the one that needs further research. It may be authentic behavior and relational authenticity or ethical and moral judgment of the nurse.


    Authenticity as a requirement for being a good leader can be compared to caring as a sole requirement for being an effective nurse. However, caring as authenticity is very hard to measure (Trip, 2007) and (Kramarie and Spender, 2000). We cannot deny the fact that the concepts of authentic leadership as a group are new; I can give my two thumbs up to that. It is similar to the theory of COMPOSURE by Carmelita Divinagracia. But individually, it is and old paradigm seen in many old theories. What makes this theory very unique is that most of the concept involves authenticity, the problem is, it is very subjective and hard to measure
    .


    Questions:
    Do you agree with me when I say that this emerging theory is just combinations of concepts of old leadership theory? Please make your stand.

    Is there instrument available to measure authenticity aside from what was mentioned in the research paper?

    Do you honestly believe that authenticity could be measured by any available/developing instrument?



    Please feel free to give negative criticisms as it may deepen my understanding of authentic leadership as a new theory.



    Karl Popper, Conjectures and Refutations, London: Routledge and Keagan Paul, 1963, pp. 33-39; from Theodore Schick, ed., Readings in the Philosophy of Science, Mountain View, CA: Mayfield Publishing Company, 2000, pp. 9-13.

    Trip, Jan Jacob (2007). Assessing Quality of Place: A Comparative Analysis of Amsterdam and Rotterdam. Journal of Urban Affairs, 29, 501-517.

    Walumbwa et al (2008). Authentic Leadership: Development and Validation of a Theory-Based Measure. Journal of Management, 34, 89-126.


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