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Claremont Colleges
Scholarship @ Claremont
CMC Senior Theses

CMC Student Scholarship

2019
Leadership, Empowerment, and Motivation: An Analysis of Modern Management
Patrick J. Myers
Claremont McKenna College

Recommended Citation
Myers, Patrick J., "Leadership, Empowerment, and Motivation: An Analysis of Modern Management" (2019). CMC Senior Theses. 2250. https://scholarship.claremont.edu/cmc_theses/2250
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Running Head: ANALYSIS OF MODERN MANAGEMENT

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Claremont McKenna College
Leadership, Empowerment, and Motivation: An Analysis of Modern Management

submitted to Professor David Day
by Patrick Myers
for Senior Thesis Spring 2019 April 29th, 2019

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Abstract The purpose of this paper is to explore the role of management in organizations and, specifically, look at the overlap between management and leadership with a particular focus on empowerment. With considerations of previous literature, current examples, and a case study interview, this literature seeks to solidify the importance of leadership by managers in the workplace. Furthermore, it seeks to highlight the role of empowerment, presented by the leader and experienced by followers, in creating a thriving workplace built on culture and trust. Lastly, the literature aims to better understand the motivations of the modern employee to provide potential areas of focus that can improve manager and employee relationships. This is an analysis of modern management looking at the effects of leadership, empowerment, and motivation in the workplace.

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Table of Contents Abstract………………………………………………………………………………........3 Acknowledgements………………………………………………………………………..6 Introduction………………………………………………………………………………..7 Chapter 1: Leadership……………………………………………………………………..8
A. Executive Leadership.................................................................................10 B. Managerial Leadership…………………………………………………...11 C. Making the Choice to Mentor……………………………………………13 Chapter 2: Empowerment………………………………………………………………..14 A. What is Empowerment?.............................................................................14 B. Effectiveness of Empowering Leadership……………………………….15 C. Autonomy………………………………………………………………..19 D. Psychological Empowerment……………………………………………23
a. Feedback………………………………………………………....26 Chapter 3: Motivation…………………………………………………………………....27
A. Motivation Theory……………………………………………………….27 B. Modern Motivational Factors…………………………………………....28
a. Empowerment……………………………………………………28 b. Growth Opportunities……………………………………………29 c. Purpose…………………………………………………………..30 d. Positive Workplace Culture……………………………………...30 C. Responsibility and Motivation…………………………………………...32

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Chapter 4: Case Study Interview………………………………………………………...34 A. Interview………………………………………………………………....35
Conclusion……………………………………………………………………..…….......41 A. Future Research: Feedback Loop of Empowerment…………………….41 B. Practical Implications……………………………………………………44 C. Closing Remarks………………………………………………………...46
References……………………………………………………………………………….47 Appendices………………………………………………………………………………55
A. Appendix A……………………………………………………………...55 B. Appendix B……………………………………………………………...60

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Acknowledgements Thank you to my parents, Jon and Kris, brother, Andrew, and the rest of the family who have contributed to my learning and growth throughout the years. Your endless support
and encouragement have been monumental in my success. I would also like to acknowledge my uncle, Hardy, for being an incredible leader and role model.

Thank you to my friends for keeping life interesting and entertaining. Each of you have made the past four years better than I could have possibly imagined.

Thank you Professor David Day for prompting my interest in I/O psychology, management theory, and leadership. Your coaching and guidance have made writing this literature exciting and enjoyable. I look forward to continuing our friendship in the years
to come.

Thank you to Taylor McKenzie, Isabella Zelinger, and the team at Paycom for being great leaders and friends, and contributing to a spectacular learning opportunity during
my internship this spring. I am excited to begin my career in Pasadena with such a wonderful group of people.

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Introduction In the modern workplace, the power of the employee has shifted since the beginning of the 21st century. For many years, employers were dealt the upper hand in finding, hiring, and retaining talent at their companies. The norm has changed where talented, well-educated employees seek opportunities of growth and development, and want to improve their skills through learning and application. They want to be part of organizations where they feel valued and provide value. In a study by McKinsey and Company, nearly one-third of company senior leaders stated finding top talent is their greatest challenge (Keller & Meany, 2017). The same research suggests by 2020 there will be a shortage of nearly 16-18 million highly skilled workers needed to fill applicable jobs in the United States and European economies (Keller & Meaney, 2017). These factors contribute to an increasingly complex workplace dynamic between executives, managers, and their subordinates (often referred to as direct reports, representatives, or team members). As this shift continues, the role of a manager is crucial in creating a healthy, culture filled workplace where employees are satisfied with their work, committed to their jobs, and motivated to achieve higher performance levels. The success rate and results of an organization are largely dependent on whether or not these three variables align. Although technology continues to automate and simplify certain processes in the workplace, organizations are only as good as the people within them. The modern manager is given the difficult task of managing employees who are considered more high maintenance and demanding than prior generations. Therefore, successful managers are

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expected to be both leaders and managers: two elements that are not the same but can go hand-in-hand.
The purpose of this paper is to explore the role of management in organizations and, specifically, look at the overlap between management and leadership. With considerations of previous literature, current examples, and a case study interview, this literature seeks to solidify the importance of leadership by managers in the workplace. Furthermore, it seeks to highlight the role of empowerment, presented by the leader and experienced by followers, in creating a thriving workplace built on culture and trust. Lastly, the literature aims to better understand the motivations of the modern employee to provide potential areas of focus that can improve manager and employee relationships. This is an analysis of modern management looking at the effects of leadership, empowerment, and motivation in the workplace. The next section will review the role of leadership in organizations, especially in terms of how it differs from management.
Chapter 1: Leadership When examining leadership from an academic perspective, one must have a firm understanding of its foundations. First and foremost, studying leadership and leaders is not the same. Leadership is a construct. It is not a position, person, or place; it is a vast field of study within psychology that looks to better understand individuals through their decisions, traits, and behaviors. Leaders are the actual individuals who make decisions, take risks, and live out the results. To understand leadership, psychologists look at past, current, and future (emerging or developing) leaders to gain insight to the complexity of their thoughts and choices. There is not a perfect example of a leader, but people tend to identify certain figures such as Martin Luther King, Abraham Lincoln, or Nelson

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Mandela. Other people may choose a parent or company CEO. Each of these individuals are inevitably different in their traits, characteristics, levels of responsibility, and public recognition, yet each of them display leadership in a unique way. In this manner, leadership is highly individualized.
The following example provides a tentative definition of leadership: “Leadership is a process whereby an individual influences a group of individuals to achieve a common goal” (Northouse, 2016, p. 6). This is a solid foundation to build upon. In the definition, the word “process” describes an ongoing endeavor. In some ways, it is string of choices that develops through actions and reactions. These situations arise in both formal and informal experiences. Formal leadership is displayed by those who are in structured organizations. A great example of this is a company executive. A company executive, who may or not be a great leader, must demonstrate leadership by leading a company to success by influencing others through motivation tactics, empowerment, careful analysis, strategic implementation, and strong decision making. Company executives also display what is known as legitimate power because their authority comes from the formal position they hold in the organization (French & Raven, 1959). Power, influence, and leadership are directly related. When used together, they make for a potent combination.
Leadership often arises in informal situations, sometimes as a result of necessity or in pursuit of task achievement. One important notion is leadership is not a position; it is a process. People often equate leadership with an assigned position but this is not the case. Sometimes, the so called “leader” is simply the first person to share their opinion or take action. In a meta-analysis examining the relationship between five-factor personality traits and leadership, extraversion and leadership were positively correlated (Judge, Illies,

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Leadership, Empowerment, and Motivation: An Analysis of