The purpose of this dissertation is to evaluate the effectiveness of followership models from an industry perspective. Existing literature explores followership from a theoretical stance; however, the industry application is limited. There is an abundance of followership typologies but each lacking in industry alignment. Furthermore, there is insufficient cohesion between followership styles and organisational performance, consequently resulting in many scholars and practitioners neglecting the importance of followership.
A qualitative study was conducted with eight individuals from an unnamed organisation, where the researcher did their placement year. This enabled the researcher to continuously provide additional insight and analysis, unquestionably contributing towards enriched findings. The data was analysed and presented in a systematic approach by answering research objectives in a logical order. Consequently, establishing a clear structure for this research paper.
The major findings of this paper were that typically effective followers had a superior influence upon organisational performance, which answered the main research objective for this study. However, it was discovered that, while certain employees exhibit less favourable followership characteristics, they are equally important to the organisation, confirming Shondrick and Lord’s theory (2010). This study concluded that passive followers typically contribute to organisational performance indirectly.
There was a combination of research limitations encountered with this study. Firstly, in the form of research timing as data collection was conducted amidst Covid-19, subsequently influencing the results of this study. In addition, the traditional nature of the organisation used for this study has tarnished results, subsequently restricting findings for modern followership interpretations. Finally, generalisability of research was limited due to the case study research approach, however this paper has been revised by a number of practitioners who each provided an enriched industry contribution.
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