Level 5 Leadership Style for Executive Position


The leadership of an organization forms an important management tool in any organization, as it is a great determinant of organizational success. If the leadership of an organization is up to date, then the organization is bound to excel in its endeavors. World-renowned leaders such as Martin Luther, Winston Churchill, Mahatma Gandhi, and Steve Jobs just to mention a few have been great inspirational leaders who have seen the success of their institutions.

It is important to note that there are different leadership styles as evidenced from the above list of leaders who had different ways of leading people but in the end having achieved their goals. It is fortunate that psychologists through the help of scientists have managed to come up with simple ways of defining and understanding different styles of leadership (Robbins and Judge, 2007). In the case study below, three types of leadership styles will be discussed. These include transformational, transactional, and level-5 leaders.

Types of Leaders

Executive A

Given the description of Executive A, it is by no doubt that he is a level 5 leader. Level 5 leadership happens to be the topmost in the hierarchy of the common leadership styles. It is characterized by several leadership virtues with the most pronounced being humility. Level 5 leaders are naturally humble or obligated to be humble. Level 5 leaders manifest their humility in various ways such as crediting fellow employees and leaders and at other times external factors on the success of the company. The reason behind their humility is that they normally blame themselves for limitations occurring within their tenure in the organization (Collins, 2001, p.1).

From the case study, it was noted that Executive A is normally quick to admit mistakes committed as well as poor results. This shows how humble the leader is hence justifying him to be a level 5 leader. It is also notable that he shies away from attention and instead of giving credit to the company’s success to other leaders while it is clear that he is the initiator of the company’s success as evidenced from the growth of the stock. This in turn shows that Executive A is not proud but rather humble of his success.

Level 5 leaders are also known to act in a quiet, calm, and determined manner their main inspiration being the inspired standards and not their own charisma (Collins, 2001, p.1). In the case study, Executive A was noted to be fiercely ambitious, driven, and entirely focused on the company’s success. This is in-line with the characteristics of level 5 leaders hence, making him fall in that category of leadership style.

Leader B

Leader B is a transactional leader given his qualities. “According to Bensimon, transactional leadership considers the relationship between leaders and followers as a two-way process of exchange and mutual influence” (Cherry, 2007, p.3). Transactional leaders are known to accumulate power from the leadership positions they hold together with their personalities. However, the authority of such leaders is normally constrained by their juniors who may retreat.

From the case study, leader B is described as one who rewards subordinates for their success as a way of initiating their motivational relationship, which is a quality of a transformational leader. In addition to this, leader B is noted to delegate duties to his subordinates and issuing them with punishments when they fail. All the aforementioned are the qualities of a transactional leader.

Leader C

Leader C is a transformational leader given his description in the case study. “According to Bernard Bass, transformational leadership occurs when leaders broaden and elevate the interests of their employees, when they generate awareness and acceptance of the purposes and the mission of the group, and when they stir their employees to look beyond their own self-interest for the good of the group” (Cherry, 2007, p.2).

In transformational leadership, the leader initiates the relationship with his followers regarding the morality and motivational levels in the organization. An example of transformational leadership is Martin Luther King who evoked the image of an extraordinary image. Leader C in the case study is depicted as a leader who takes pride in his leadership role by setting high expectations for his followers, hence justified to be a transactional leader. Additionally, leader C awards his employees as a way of returning their efforts, which is a quality of a transformational leader.

Effects of Leadership styles of leaders B and C on appointment as CEO

From the discussion above, leader B is depicted as a transactional leader whose major qualities include listening to the suggestions of his subordinates, expressing concern for others, and providing feedback among others. It is evident that such a leader encourages risk through his type of leadership. Therefore, this leadership style is not advisable for a person seeking to be appointed the position of a company’s CEO.

This is because of the major duties and obligations that are bestowed to a CEO. In addition to this, a leader’s B quality of according the full responsibility of a task on the subordinate is not a good quality of a leader since the leader is there to guide his subordinates and make sure that they do as per his orders. In case of failure, the leader ought to be fully responsible since he is the team leader. It is clear that transactional leadership is a type of management instead of being a type of leadership. This is attributable to the fact that it has great limitations for work that requires the use of knowledge or creativity. This is because the subordinate is normally limited to the scope defined to them by their leader.

On the other hand, leader C is even a worse style of leadership style than transactional leadership. This is because this leadership style has the disadvantage of causing high staff turnover since the employees have less contribution in their job satisfaction. Leader C has been noted to instill high goals for his employees as well as taking pride to institute a rational approach to problem-solving in the company. As such, when leader C is appointed as the CEO of the company, his style of leadership may not make him achieve his successor even meet the targets put by Executive A.


From the discussion of the case study, it is agreeable that the level 5 leadership style is the best and most appropriate leadership style for a company’s CEO. This is evidenced by the great success that was evidenced through the leadership of Executive A, which led to increased stock turnover and profit among other corporates successes evidenced during his tenure. As such, if leaders B and C would wish to experience success once appointed as CEO of the company, they should strive to adopt a level 5 leadership style as adopted by Executive A.

Reference List

Cherry, B. (2007). Transformational versus Transaction Leadership. Web.

Collins, J. (2001). Level 5 Leadership: The Triumph of Humility and Fierce Resolve. Web.

Robbins, S. P., & Judge, T. A. (2007). Organizational behavior. (12th ed.). UpperSaddle R iver, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.

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BusinessEssay. "Level 5 Leadership Style for Executive Position." December 17, 2022. https://business-essay.com/level-5-leadership-style-for-executive-position/.