Leaders often occupy a more exposed position than followers, they have increased pressures and accountability. Often, due to their elevated status or financial rewards, they may be isolated in the workplace. The perception of the leader can also be influenced by all management decisions in a form of 'cabinet responsibility', so the perception of a leader may be partly formed by the behaviours of other leaders, board decisions, or legislation requirements.
Given the range of behaviours leaders demonstrate throughout their career, perception is argued to show a more consistent view, a lens through which behaviours are interpreted. Goebel and Cashen noticed this effect in children describing their teachers based on simple physical traits, referring to the broader "primacy effect" generated by the initial perception of a follower, after which they are "less likely to attend to new and contradictory evidence [behaviours]" (1979. p.651). This may be additionally informed in a management context, for example, through media representations.
Based on this perception, the same leader behaviour could be understood in different ways by different followers - one which builds trust, and one which does not. ...Show more