Leader-member Exchange Model

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Every time you detach one group of individuals from the other, a psychological phenomenon, is observed, known as the in-group or out-group. The effects of this separation might be as mild as feelings of distrust between the groups or become as extreme as prejudice or racism.

In a place of work, the In-group, out-Group effect is, more often than not, viewed as team islands. These teams work superbly within themselves, but the relationship between the two deteriorates as time goes by.  A researchby Henri Tajfel found in-group individuals preferable to their counterpart that is the out-group. The out-group was found to be considered immoral and unpleasant.

In-group is a group of individuals who have common interests, as well as concern for the welfare of each one of them. The members may include co-workers, family or members of religious or political groups that an individual can belong to. People can form in-groups basing on common features or mutual interests. This is because they have a tendency of receiving support for such traits.

Members of an In-group view their long-term goals in terms of the accomplishments by the group as well as the development of trust. They usually believe that they are powerful, privileged and prestigious. The in-group members have an attitude they re far away superior to the minority groups; they consider the minority groups different by nature (Williams 1964). The leader and the in-group members all have the same values and attitudes. They interact freely, and the follower has to support the leader, work hard and display loyalty (Nahavandi 2006).

On the other hand, out-group members are considered to be outcast as well as low achievers. They are also perceived to be less motivated, interaction lowly with the leaders and have nothing in common. The out-group membership is seen as an endorsed post, and the individual is born to it. This group is distinguished cultural and physical attributes, which distinguish them, from the group which is dominant. They have the notion of being a community due to perceiving that there exists common suffering. The out-group is oppressed in the presence of a dominant group. In the end, they are the ones who are disadvantaged.

Where possible, the in-group out-group effects can be lessened by a number of ways. Firstly, any existing boundary should be removed; in other words, all the project team can be located in one office. Secondly, any boundary marker should be removed, for example, local team badges or logos. Thirdly, individual relationships can be built so as to overcome any residual boundaries, for example, organizing several team work or social events. In addition, the project team members can be educated on how to counter the effects of in and out-groups. Lastly, common areas that can be shared should be established.

2. Describe a situation where you (or someone you know) were a member of the "In group" and another situation where you (or someone you know) were a member of the "Out group." This should be an example from your own business experience.

An example of being an in-group member is being part of a large union in an organization, which is influential and all powerful. On the other hand, the immigrants in the union are seen as being members of the out-group.

3. Analyze and explain the major differences between the two situations.

Members belonging to an in-group believe in themselves being superior to the other out-group members and feel they can gain access to privileges and various rights. People usually feel morally upright towards being in the in-group and do not concern with the out-group.

4. Explain how having an in-group and an out-group affected the groups and the organization.

Having an in-group and out-group did have an effect on the groups and organization in a number of ways. For instance, an in-group will promote teamwork and cohesiveness among individuals and groups as well as in the organizations.

Individuals in the in-group have less conflict between them as compared to the out-groups. More over, there is a likelihood of information being shared between the people in the in-group.

If we have a preview of Chinese and the impact of in-groups to organizations and businesses, we would find that in China and, any business transaction would have to follow the development of relationships between individuals. The Chinese have a preference in getting to know people around them, and first prove whether they can trust them or be trusted before they can be partners in business ventures.

The Chinese perceive building a relationship from the onset as something that is extremely important and warranted. They believe for any knowledge to be shared there has to be an existing relationship and that they are already a member of their in-group.

The Chinese view an individual’s membership into an in-group will have an effect in day to day economic activities. One of the values of being in an in-group is being trustworthy and dependent on others. However, those who do not fit into the properties of being an in-group will then be considered as belonging to the out-group. The out-group will not be involved with any of the benefits that are associated with being a member of the in-group. In addition, the interdependent relationship between members of an in-group will make them motivated.

Being in an in-group will be a source of identity, loyalty or protection. From this, knowledge is expected to be shared within the members of the group. However, the knowledge is restricted to those who are not members of the in-group.

5. To what extent was membership in either the in-group or the out-group based on task related performance factors? What non-task related factors entered into the decision?

In the case of a labor union, present is a level of performance that must be achieved. There are factors that determine performance with other workers, for example, communication, cooperation, communication. On the other side, non-task related factors include emotional, in addition to personal binding with, the rest of the group, in the case of sharing each other's feelings or grievances.

6. The implications for leadership and a leader's relationship with followers.

Leadership is something that is particularly essential in this concept since the leader is the one supposedly expected to drive the groups putting into concern the group’s different objectives, goals, ambitions, tasks or other activities. An in-group can become more powerful if a leader projects his or her group to others with vigor and passion. However, some situations do not require the relationship with a leader to satisfy the needs of the followers (Nahavandi, 2006, pg 178-9). Some circumstances can counterbalance any effect of the leader as well as replace the leadership. What can be preventing the consideration of a leader and structuring behaviors from affecting the subordinates is the leader’s lack of power in delivering outcomes to the followers, in addition to a rigid culture, of an organization.

The relationship between a leader and his followers plays majorly on the whole group’s performance, bond and cooperation between different members of the group. An exemplary leader can be described as an individual who is seen as a representative of the whole group; an individual who is confident and trustworthy among fellow group members. A leader will encounter conflicts among the group if his or her relationship with the rest of the group is decomposed. There is no clear and straightforward way of leadership.

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