Slide 10 of 28
The 1940s saw the rise to popularity of the group approach to analyzing leadership, and other definitions of leadership from that era reflect this. Scholars were also attempting to separate, and distinguish, leadership from power.
1940’s: “Leadership is the result of an ability to persuade or direct men, apart from the prestige or power that comes from office or other external circumstances.” (Reuter, 1941, page 133, quoted in Rost, page 48)
Some people were already attempting to define followers’ role:
“H.H. Jennings (1944) accepted the followers as the people who identified the leader in the group. In what she called a “dynamic redefinition” of the word leadership, she concluded: “Leadership thus appears as a manner of interaction involving behavior by and toward the individual ‘lifted’ to a leader role by other individuals” (page 432). (quoted in Rost, page 49)
An organizational definition was offered by R.C. Davis: “Leadership is the principal dynamic force that stimulates, motivates, and coordinates the organization in the accomplishment of its objectives.” (1942, page 27, quoted in Rost, page 49)
The classic group psychology definition of leadership emerged out of the Ohio State Leadership Studies program (founded 1949): “Leadership may be said to be the behavior of an individual while he is involved in directing group activities.” (Hemphill, 1949b, page 4, quoted in Rost, pages 49-50)