Public Leadership in the Context of New Technology


Leadership in the digital age

Leadership styles today are changing depending on changes experienced in emerging digital technology. Societies are transitioning from agricultural to industrial societies creating an effect in the leadership patterns. Information society has experienced four structural changes that include accelerated globalization (ICTs), digitization of communication and information technology, distributed forms of organizations with less hierarchies and shift towards knowledge as main factor of production. As a result, the style of leadership in the postindustrial age is developing and has stronger linkages horizontally among people of different sectors and economies such as private entrepreneurs, executives, researchers, and civil society leaders. Various leadership characteristics have emerged including discipline, focus, charisma, and passionate commitment. Digital age leadership requires new attitudes, skills, and knowledge.

Leadership theories

There are various theories of leadership used by leaders in the digital technology. These include trait theory, skills theory, situational theory, contingency theory, path-goal theory, transformational theory, transactional theory, and servant leadership theory.

Trait theory

Trait theory explains that people are supposedly born with or without qualities that contribute to success in their leadership roles. It assumes that effective leadership is brought by cognitive ability and personality among other inherited qualities. It adds that good leadership is a combination of disagreements, social life and drive and intelligence.



Skills theory

Skills theory explains that effective leadership is not contributed by inherited characteristics but it is brought by learned skills and abilities. It argues that developed style, learned skills, and acquired knowledge are most important factors in effective leadership. It brings the important of training and development programs offered to leaders.

Situational theory

Situational theory argues that different situations demand for different leadership styles. Therefore, effective leaders adapt their styles according to the prevailing circumstances of that situation. Primary factors such as competence assessment and commitment of employees are good determination factors of how leaders adapt to differing situations. It dictates which styles to be used by leaders either supportive or directive (Authenticity consulting LLC, 2010).

Contingency theory

Contingency theory explains that effectiveness of a leader depends on the match of the situation with the style used by the leader.

Path-goal theory

Path-goal theory explains that motivation given to followers by their leaders helps to accomplish set objectives. Path-goal believes that people add their focus on duties given and become well motivated after believing they can do great work and perform better (Authenticity consulting LLC, 2010). They also believe that they will meet their targets and get expected outcomes after believing that their work is important.

Transformational theory

Transformational theory explains that leadership is a process of engaging with other people thus creating connections, which results in morality and motivation of their followers. It is joined to charismatic theory, which argues that leaders possessing qualities such as extroversion, clear values and confidence fit best in motivating other people. Transformational leadership enables leaders to pay attention to the needs of their followers as a way of trying to help them meet their full potential.

Transactional theory

Transactional theory explains the exchanges present in all jobs and the rewards or punishments that follow. Leaders have a responsibility to make clear the obligations to be met and the rewards and punishments available after doing or not doing given duties (Authenticity consulting LLC, 2010).

Servant leadership theory

The theory explains that all leaders must first become servants. In addition, they should consider needs of their followers and customers ahead of their personal interests to be extra effective.

Grand bargain

Grand bargain explains an agreement made between leaders and their followers on how to reduce spending in an aim to cut national debt. At the same time, it involves avoidance of steep spending cuts referred as sequestration. Leaders such as president Obama in United States proposed a grand bargain to republicans to cut impulse buying from the budget (Jackson, 2013). However, GOP leaders were quick to oppose the deal. Obama proposed a cut of corporate tax rates, which would in exchange be used to offer jobs, which was a president’s priority. President Obama aimed to reform corporate tax code as he worked with the republicans. Money generated would be used to invest in creation of middle class jobs as they transit to simple tax systems.

Beaverton planners are not hit by the grand bargain over Oregon’s land use.

A grand bargain prevails against Beaverton planners and South Cooper Mountain planning project. The argument comes from undesignated 20 acres of land that are set apart for road connections. The south Cooper Mountain project is aiming to first utilize the reserved areas before they get to other lands. The next project manager said that following expansion of urban growth boundary would occupy another place (Bray, 2015). The main aim of growing urban boundaries as well as reserves is to balance resources that are natural with housing and balance urban industry together with agriculture.

European leader’s grand bargain

European leaders aimed at conducting a grand bargain after a market watch in London. They wish to conduct reforms that will give a facelift to euro-zone rescue fund and impact tougher fiscal rules on nations that use single currency to complete long-running crisis of debts. In support of this, Germany would agree to increase its lending capacity of European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF). In favor of this Germany would get committed to increased fiscal condition, discipline in the budget and increase competitiveness over euro zone (Watts, 2011). Angela Merkel Germany chancellor and Bob Baur global investors and chief economists are among leaders who proposed the bargain.



Watts, W. (2011). European leaders aim for grand bargain by March. Retrieved from

Authenticity consulting LLC. (2010). Leadership theories. Leadership. Retrieved from

Jackson, D. (2013). Obama clash over proposed grand bargain. Retrieved from

Bray, K. (2015). Oregon’s land use ‘grand bargain and Beaverton: what you need to know. Retrieved from




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