Paper Example on Path-Goal Leadership Theory

Published: 2023-01-31
Paper Example on Path-Goal Leadership Theory
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Goal Human resources Organizational behavior Leadership style
Pages: 2
Wordcount: 449 words
4 min read

A recent survey undertaken by McKinsey and Company, recommends that the furtive to establishing operational leaders in an organization is to encourage four distinct forms of behavior (Feser, Mayol & Srinivasan, 2018). They encompass supporting others, seeking different perspectives, leading with a strong goal orientation, and solving problems. Thus, to ensure that the four behaviors are exhibited in an organization, leaders should employ path-goal theory formulated by House and Mitchell in 1974 (Packard, 2009). Path-goal theory is the most appropriate leadership theory because it displays achievement-oriented, participative, AND supportive leadership behaviors aligned with four forms of behaviors suggested by McKinsey and Company.

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Path-goal theory exhibits supportive leader behavior towards the fulfilments of needs and preference of employees. Leaders, in this case, demonstrate concern for the psychological welfare of employees. This is through accessing task and follower aspects and then showing them how attaining goals of an organization meets their requirements (Packard, 2009). Therefore, this behavior is required when providing support to employees, particularly on occasions when relationships or tasks are physically or psychologically distressing.

The path-goal theory also displays participative leadership behavior. For example, when leaders refer to their employees for suggestions before arriving at the best decisions (Packard, 2009). Leaders who exhibit this behavior center their decisions on effective analysis to evade biases that face decisions. This trait is appropriate for leaders who assess trends and changes affecting organizations (Feser, Mayol & Srinivasan, 2018). Thus, by encouraging workers to participate and contribute their ideas, it helps address such trends and changes which ultimately improve the organization's performance.

The path-goal theory also displays goal-oriented leadership behavior. Such behavior makes leaders not only a tool for formulating and communicating goals but also for assessing employees for their attainment (Feser, Mayol & Srinivasan, 2018). This is particularly in situations when leaders formulate challenging goals for workers and suppose they will execute them at their greatest effort (Packard, 2009). Therefore, goal-oriented leadership behavior is important in technical tasks, entrepreneurs, engineers, and salespersons in helping them attain their goals.

It is evident from the paper that path-goal theory is the best theory to apply in an organization since it displays some of the leadership features suggested by recent researches. Such behaviors include supportive, participate, and achievement-oriented leadership behaviors essential to execute different organization tasks and improve their performance in general. Therefore, it is the best leadership theory that leaders should use to improve both the welfare of employees and organization.


Feser, C., Mayol, F., & Srinivasan, R. (2018). New research suggests that the secret to developing effective leaders is to encourage four types of behavior. Retrieved 5 August 2019, from

Packard, T. (2009). Leadership and performance in human services organizations. The handbook of human services management, 143-164.

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