Managerial Leadership Development Essay


Discuss about the Managerial Leadership Development.



Leadership is an essentiality in the present organisational structure. A good leader can take the company to new heights. A leader should have all the qualities and capabilities in him to lead the company and his team. With time his managerial capabilities and skills should also be enhanced.

McDonalds is one of the top most fast food companies in the world. It employees more than sixty thousand employees and to lead such a huge number and achieving the set goals of the company is a big task. How a company is lead to the success is the job of a capable leader. McDonalds has a aim to be the best fast food restaurant in the world and a good managerial leader can change this objective into a reality and provide success to the company.

Managerial Leadership Development in McDonalds

An effective and successful leader is the one who does the correct things. It is a leader’s responsibility to effectively lead its team, earn their support and communicate them the vision of an organisation’s goals and make them achieve that goal. He needs to have managerial traits also to manage everything that comes in his way (Rast, Hogg and Giessner, 2013).

The managerial leaders of McDonalds have adopted a style known as ‘Team-Building’ to manage their team and make the outlets a fun place to work. Managerial leaders of McDonalds advance the social responsibility and accountability to culture and include these activities in their business operations (Miller and Buxton, 2012).

The managerial leadership model followed by McDonalds is Adair’s model of leadership also known as action-centred leadership. The leadership functions used in Adair model of leadership are:-

  • Accomplishing the attained task
  • Team maintenance
  • Individual need of members of the team should be met

Adair model of leadership believes that the leader that emerges has the quality to adopt any style of leadership as required by the situation (De Hoogh, Greer and Den Hartog, 2015). Certain characteristics that a leader needs to perform his role efficiently are as follows: -

  • The high level of integrity and authenticity should be there in a team leader’s behaviour, and he should build a trusted relationship with all his team mates
  • His commitment should be towards the team development
  • Along with communication skills, he should be a good listener too
  • He should share his assumptions, perceptions, and views with his team members
  • Work independence to team member should be given but in a self-organised way

At McDonalds the controlling span of a managerial leader is narrow. The controlling span means the number of working subordinates under the leader (Campbell and Richardson, 2007). If the controlling span is narrow, it gives certain advantages to the leader, and that is:

  • Tight control on the working subordinates
  • Close supervision of the daily operations brings co-ordination.
  • Leader gets time to think and plan
  • Delegation gets reduced due to narrow span of control
  • Manager can provide more of his initiative towards the organisation

Critically analysing, the managerial leadership style of McDonalds is autocratic and thus, the employees or the subordinates are not included in any decision making. Also, the suggestions of crew members or subordinates are not welcomed even, as most of them are new in the company. On a general basis, the young and inexperienced work in these restaurants during their holidays and therefore their ideas are not valued enough. Young staff is always motivated when paid well with transportation and meal. Hence, they work enthusiastically even in autocratic leadership (Lyons and Schneider, 2009).

This leadership style puts pressure on the team members who are already much pressurised with a workload. Even with the disadvantage of autocratic leadership style workers of McDonalds find their workplace a fun place to be. They do not mind being ordered and directed by their managers. In fact, they prefer working under the autocratic style of leadership. One reason may be that under stress they don’t have to be creative for their job and just have to follow orders. It may be said that at McDonald’s leadership cannot be the actual reason for workers performance but the environment they are working in. And it is the managements work to provide the working staff right environment to work in (Bhatti et al., 2012).

Autocratic leadership style can only dictate employees but can’t motivate them, but, McDonald’s fears to adopt another style of leadership as it may lead to a backlash from the team members who want the most independent style of working. McDonald’s seek standardisation across the globe, and that cannot happen if every outlet will have a self-starter. So, Autocratic leadership style will be the best type of managerial leadership for McDonalds (Boudrias et al., 2009).

Processes and Methods for Developing Leaders

Leader development expands the person’s ability to make him effective in leadership processes and roles. These roles and processes which are expanded help the leader in direction setting, maintaining commitment, and creating alignment in a team for doing a common job. All the programs and educational researches of an organisational leadership focus on developing skills, abilities, and individual knowledge in connection with individual’s formal leadership roles. Leader development is actually an investment in human capital (Velsor, Ruderman, & McCauley, 2010)

The process of leader development includes three main purposes, and they are:

Performance Improvement- the first step of this process is to access the organisation’s need for an effective leader and how well it is being met.

The second step is to find out the gaps of the system that is in need of addressing.

The third step is to find out the current leader’s qualities and the performance areas where improvement is required (Clifton, 2015).

Succession Management- the first step of succession management is to see that a sufficient number of potential candidates is getting ready for higher management positions.

The second step includes the identification of the successor of leadership positions

The third and the final step of succession management are to check out the diversified pool of high potentials.

Organisational change- for organisational changes the first steps of the process are to identify the leader abilities and skills which is an important thing for accomplishing the business strategy.

The second step is to consider the extent of the importance of organisational values and beliefs for accomplishing the strategy (Velsor, Ruderman, & McCauley, 2010)

The methods of developing a leader are given as follows:-

Rotate through the different type of jobs- exposure gained from different level and divisions will give a leader experience of various roles of a company.

The challenge with unfamiliar jobs- different and unfamiliar jobs will give experience and growth to a leader. Even failure will also teach a lesson.

Create mentoring programs- pairing the employee with a senior employee is a common approach to any business but some time should be given to them to build trust for each other before providing a specific job to them (Fulmer, Stumpf and Bleak, 2009).

Frequent feedback and coaching are necessary- proper evaluation and feedback of work done should be given so that an employee can work to improve his performance.

Tap veterans’ advice- mentoring programs from veterans to the future leader, will help them to learn from the experience of the old worker.

After following the processes of developing a leader and later involving the methods to develop a leader an organisation will have a potential leader for running the business strategies of the company successfully (Grossberg, 2013).

Strategy Plan for Improving the Leadership Capabilities of McDonalds

One is not born with leadership qualities they can be developed in the person if given proper guidance and training. Now-a-days being a leader is not enough one has to have the managerial qualities also to run an organization and lead a team and set an example for them (Muchiri et al., 2011).

The McDonalds is one of the top most fast food restaurants in the world, but it aims at being the best fast food restaurant across the globe. To attain this goal the leader of the company should have leadership and managerial skills which will help the organisation to be the best fast food restaurant in the world (Zhang, 2014). The strategic plan for developing the capabilities of a leader of McDonalds includes few steps, and they are as follows: -

The first step to improve the leadership capabilities is to add few characteristics that a future leader will require:-

A leader should have perception and insight of an extraordinary level of the practicality of the work and themselves.

Motivation level should be high to attain the changes that will occur to be a successful leader.

successful leader needs to be emotionally strong so he could manage the anxiety of oneself and of others.

Update his skills for identifying functional, analysing cultural and dysfunctional assumptions which enlarge the culture by enhancing the functional elements and strength.

A leader should willingly involve others when a task is too complex for him to solve or to attain (Jeavons, 2011).

The second step to increase the capabilities of the leader is adding some behavioural skills and they are: -

He should learn to have effective verbal communication which includes listening

It is important to manage stress and time

Individual decisions need to be managed

He should be able to recognise, define and solve problems

A leader has to motivate and influence others and for that, he has to be motivated himself

A leader should know the process of delegating

A leader should be able to express his vision and goals to his team

A leader should be self-aware

Team building is an important skill for a leader

A leader should be able to manage conflicts (Kelly, 2006).

If a leader has all the capabilities mentioned above, he will be able to run the company in a better way than before.

For attaining any goal a leader has to face few challenges that will stop him in his way. It is necessary to find those challenges and issues. The challenges a leader may face are:-

  • It is not a one day process, developing a leader needs time and patience
  • Its looks easy but very difficult to develop all the capabilities and skills in one person
  • Organisational politics may act as a hindrance in following the strategy.
  • Too many things to be accomplished in little time create ‘headaches’.
  • Employees may not want the change of leadership style they may be happy with the way things are going
  • Many a times leader is developed, but authorities are not given to the leader to use his capabilities and skills (Miller and Buxton, 2012).

The processes and methods of developing a leader do not cover every area that is required by the leader to be successful leader, therefore, few recommendations for managerial leadership development for an organisation are given here and they as follows: -

  • It is recommended that a leader should listen better for understanding new ideas, and context, etc. this is a foundation step to great leadership.
  • A leader should always work to improve his perception because one single mistake can threaten the decades of good work
  • A leader should how to reinforce, the values and beliefs of the company because once these values and beliefs are reinforced then it will affect the daily operations of the company (Robinson, 2010).
  • A leader should learn to say only that what he commits to doing. It will improve his integrity in the eyes of subordinates
  • A leader should be a talent generator. He should be able to help his subordinates in a constant growth which will improve his company’s outcome
  • A leader should know how to deal with failure and improve him by learning a lesson from it.
  • A deep connection with his team members will help the leader to have a constant growth
  • A leader should be a judge of his own strengths which he should use for his favour.
  • A leader should always welcome feedback and suggestions as it will help in improving the working of the company and of his.
  • A great leader always provides an example for his subordinates thus; he should maintain his working and values to be respectful.
  • A leader should have a clear vision towards the organisation and its working that he should be able to convey to his team (Robinson-Walker, 2007).
  • Another leadership style other than autocratic can be tried that may help the company improve.

These are the suggested recommendations for improving the capabilities of a leader of McDonalds. It will help the company to attain its goal of being the world’s best fast food restaurant.


A person is not born leader, but one can develop leadership skills by following the path of leader development. Every organisation in today’s time needs an effective leader who can take care of everything his subordinates, managing, planning, publicising, customer relations and problem handling and solving. A person can develop as a leader by learning from the experiences that he gains from working and from others also he should incorporate the skills and capabilities that a successful leader needs to effectively manage and lead his team.

There would be many challenges that will hinder the leader’s progress in the development, but a leader should be able to overcome all the hindrances and develop as a successful managerial leader (Vestal, 2009).


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