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From a Behavioral Toward an Interactional Theory of Charisma in Organizations
Unformatted Document Text:  Student Paper Interactional Theory of Charisma 9 permanent institutions of a community to give way to power of tradition or of rational socialization” (1968, p. 28). Weber identified the epitome of the rationalization of charisma in the process of scientific management: “… the American system of ‘scientific management’ enjoys the greatest triumphs in the rational conditioning and training of work performances (1968, p. 38). In short, the charismatic leader can be seen to lose her mystique when her role is converted to that of the manager. Taylor (1911/1947) provides one of the earliest definitions of the manager when he sets her apart from the worker. The manager is a scientist who is trained to see a job in its entirety and find the optimal way to complete it. This optimal way refers to the reduction of time and motion so as to increase worker productivity. Over the course of the twentieth century, Taylor’s picture of management gained credence with managers themselves. Mintzberg (1979) observed that by the latter half of the century managers’ own ideas about their role in the organization looked very different from the practices performed by them daily. He notes: “If you ask a manager what he does, he will probably tell you that he plans, organizes, coordinates and controls. Then watch what he does. Don’t be surprised if you can’t relate what you see to these four words” (p. 104). Mintzberg goes on to suggest that managers actually realize 10 roles in organizations that fall under three larger categories of interpersonal roles, informational roles, and decisional roles. Interestingly, one interpersonal role of the manager is to be a leader. Mintzberg does not spend much time elaborating the role of the leader, nor does he single it out as more important than any other of the roles the manager plays. He observes that in the role of the leader, the manager is responsible for hiring and training his/her own staff, encouraging and motivating employees, and “reconciling their individual needs with the goals of the organization.” Mintzberg's conception of the leader recalls theories of worker motivation as outlined by McGregor (1960) and Herzberg (1966).

Authors: Leonardi, Paul.
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Student Paper Interactional Theory of Charisma 9
permanent institutions of a community to give way to power of tradition or of rational
socialization” (1968, p. 28). Weber identified the epitome of the rationalization of charisma in
the process of scientific management: “… the American system of ‘scientific management’
enjoys the greatest triumphs in the rational conditioning and training of work performances
(1968, p. 38). In short, the charismatic leader can be seen to lose her mystique when her role is
converted to that of the manager. Taylor (1911/1947) provides one of the earliest definitions of
the manager when he sets her apart from the worker. The manager is a scientist who is trained to
see a job in its entirety and find the optimal way to complete it. This optimal way refers to the
reduction of time and motion so as to increase worker productivity. Over the course of the
twentieth century, Taylor’s picture of management gained credence with managers themselves.
Mintzberg (1979) observed that by the latter half of the century managers’ own ideas about their
role in the organization looked very different from the practices performed by them daily. He
notes: “If you ask a manager what he does, he will probably tell you that he plans, organizes,
coordinates and controls. Then watch what he does. Don’t be surprised if you can’t relate what
you see to these four words” (p. 104). Mintzberg goes on to suggest that managers actually
realize 10 roles in organizations that fall under three larger categories of interpersonal roles,
informational roles, and decisional roles. Interestingly, one interpersonal role of the manager is
to be a leader. Mintzberg does not spend much time elaborating the role of the leader, nor does
he single it out as more important than any other of the roles the manager plays. He observes
that in the role of the leader, the manager is responsible for hiring and training his/her own staff,
encouraging and motivating employees, and “reconciling their individual needs with the goals of
the organization.” Mintzberg's conception of the leader recalls theories of worker motivation as
outlined by McGregor (1960) and Herzberg (1966).


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