Organizational Leadership: What is is & How it Can Help You

Leadership is an important skill to have as a manager. Even non-managers can benefit from leadership to help develop self-stewardship and motivation. One of the best ways to efficiently and holistically manage a team is through organizational leadership.

What is organizational leadership?

The defining characteristic of organizational leadership is that it encompasses what is suitable for the organization and what is good for its individual members. In a sense, it covers the top, middle and bottom tiers of the organization, motivating its people and being sensitive to their needs while, at the same time, setting strategic goals for the betterment of the entire organization.

There are several things a manager has to consistently practice when following organizational leadership;

  • Aligning one’s skills and capabilities with the company’s mission and vision
  • Creating strategies and goals aligned with the organization’s mission and vision
  • Establishing goals and objectives
  • Keeping teams accountable for their individual goals and timelines
  • Forecast of opportunities and challenges
  • Come up with creative solutions for possible challenges
  • Being flexible and adaptable in the face of change and adversity
  • Keeping composure amid pressure
  • Inspiring and unifying team members to work as one
  • Addressing needs of internal and external stakeholders
  • Communicate clearly and emphatically towards others
  • Being an authentic leader, practicing integrity and inclusivity

Learn more about inclusivity, diversity, and equality through this inclusive leadership online class.

Jobs that require an organizational leader

Organizational leaders are needed in almost every industry out there. You can find organizational leaders in business, finance, education, government, health care, and nonprofit. Some of the titles that an organizational leader may hold are as follows; 

  • Chief Financial Officer
  • Chief Information Officer
  • Chief Operating Officer
  • Dean
  • Provost
  • General Counsel
  • President
  • Vice President
  • Human Resource Officer
  • Training and Development Manager
  • Project Manager
  • Sales Representative
  • Organization Manager


Advantages of organizational leadership

As you can see, organizational leadership has high standards. As a result, you can expect that there are several benefits to practicing organizational leadership within your team, mainly;


It is one of the main goals of organizational leadership to inspire and motivate team members. If you, as a leader, align your skills and abilities with the company’s outlook, your team will quickly see this. Couple that with a growth mindset and adaptability, then you can make anyone feel that it is their responsibility to do the same as well.

Organizational leaders forge on by example. Not only do they dictate what needs to be done, but they also model the kind of mindset and attitude that the team needs to embody in order to do it. If you want to inspire others, this kind of leadership is what works.


Organizational leadership does not spoon-feed instruction like directional leadership or autocratic management. Instead, they foster creativity and innovation. They encourage the team to practice problem-solving skills by doing it as well.

These leaders usually trust their members enough to take the reins. They promote a safe environment where mistakes are learning opportunities where great minds can contribute to a better future of the organization.

You can tell that a team has organizational leadership when its members are not afraid to speak up, feel comfortable and safe, trusted, come up with innovative ideas, and make decisions without having too much fear of failure.

Ethical communication

It takes a high level of emotional intelligence to become an organizational leader. Such a leader values respect, inclusivity, and compassion from all of their team members. Ethical communication is a must within such organizations.

Since these leaders expect members to speak up, they tend to value everyone’s input and contribution to the team. Therefore, they consider everybody’s ideas and actively and empathically listens to their concerns. As a result, it is usually a peaceful atmosphere in organizational leadership. 


Individuals under such leadership tend to remain focused on their goals. They know that their input and concerns have been duly noted, and they know that their leader respects and cares for them. As a result, they are more motivated to reach their goals.

As a result, organizational leaders can take a step back and focus on the bigger picture. There is no need for any micromanagement or spoon-feeding of directives. Instead, he or she can navigate the foreseen challenges ahead and prepare to troubleshoot crises in an innovative manner. 

Important organizational leadership skills

Some of the skills you need to develop in order to succeed in organizational leadership are as follows;


The critical component in almost any leadership role is communication. This includes both verbal and nonverbal communication. You need to be not only transparent and concise but also sincere and consistent between your words and actions.


Leaders must be natural problem solvers. People will come to you to troubleshoot their concerns when they feel like they can no longer handle them themselves. You need to think critically and innovatively to tackle different issues effectively.


Leadership is also about making big decisions that not only concern yourself but the entire organization. You need to think quickly and make decisions just as promptly. When required, you also need to consider many options available to choose which one will benefit your organization the most.


You need to foster teamwork in order to be an effective organizational leader. That is why relationship building is an important skill to have. You need to be able to efficiently connect with each of your members, and they have to be confident and trust you enough to come to you with their ideas and concerns.


As mentioned above, organizational leaders are responsible for coming up with strategies to meet their goals. However, they also have to make sure that their processes and proposals are aligned with the organization’s core values.


Finally, an essential aspect of organizational leadership is the ability to foresee any future opportunities that could benefit the company and any foreseeable crises that the company may encounter based on their current situation and experiences of other similar organizations. The ability to forecast is what enables the organizational leader to create effective strategies for the team.

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