Researchers Examine Factors That Make A Valued Leader - Pollack Peacebuilding Systems

November 23, 2021by Elise Sanchez

Summary of:

Terry, O. (2020). Power in the workplace, finding an alter-native to the iron fist. Open Journal of Leadership, 9, 97-112.

Background & Theory

Power is often something that can be abused and is not always utilized correctly. When working as a supervisor, knowing how to lead people and how to appropriately utilize the power of leadership and influence can be a difficult task to achieve. This article goes into the details of the tools people need to practice in order to be fair and successful leaders and how to step away from the harmful leadership tactics of the past. 

Research Question(s)

Author Oroszi Terry, in the article, “Power in the Workplace, Finding an Alter-native to the Iron Fist” asks the follow question: 

    1. What do people need to do in order to be a successful leader? 


The author reviewed existing literature on subjects like perspectives on power, power in organizations, power in organization groups, organizational leaders, etc. This was to get a broad idea of the make-up of an organization, including groups, structure, and human interaction as leaders interact with these subject groups. 


The research found that people who have a higher emotional intelligence and are willing to use this to effectively communicate are generally known to be better leaders among employees. Being open-minded when challenged in this role gives someone the advantage to take the perspective of others and see issues that are at hand. This approach is viewed by employees as effective allowing the leaders to be greater problem-solvers. 

What This Means

  • People who are able to communicate and have a high EI are more likely to be more effective leaders 
  • Those who are dedicated to problem solving and conflict resolution are able to lead effectively and fairly
  • People are able to respond better to humanizing and understanding leadership

Final Takeaway

For consultants: Taking a step back and reevaluating what it means to be an effective and respectful leader can have a positive effect on a workplace environment. Knowing how to better connect to people and form interpersonal relationships in this role will only improve leadership and cohesion. 

For everyone: Knowing how to be both a leader and see a good leader in another is healthy for a workplace environment. Being able to execute and identify these important attributes allows for full transparency and expectations. 

Elise Sanchez

Élise Sanchez is a double alumnus from Pepperdine University where she holds a Masters in Dispute Resolution from the Caruso School of Law and a Bachelors in both International Relations and French from Seaver College. During her time in her studies she found her passion for being an advocate for those who need help amplifying their voices. After finishing her International Relations degree, she decided to go on for her MDR to learn how to be a better advocate and peacekeeper.

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