Building Leaders: An Overview of leadership development and practices in public organizations

Over the years, organizational leadership has emerged as a significant topic and remains highly contested. It is a highly contested topic due to its many styles, approaches and definitions. Austin and Pershing (2015) identified three leadership styles as authoritarian, democratic, and laissez-faire. Additionally, previous literature has referred to the term "leadership" as behaviors that generate helpful changes and promotes positive organizational climates for enhancement of employees and as well as the organization (Kouzes & Posner, 2017. Because the term is so complex, it can lead to a misconception of how it should be implemented and the strategies needed to build leaders within public organizations. This research project has been designed to provide an overview of the term leadership, its definitions, styles, and theories, to provide a detailed description of how the terms complexity can affect organizational leadership. This descriptive research will use a mixed method strategy and rely on both qualitative and quantitative data. The data collected will be used to determine whether effective leadership skills and practices are used my managers or supervisors within the Department of Public Social Services (DPSS) as part of their managerial responsibility, specifically the supervisors and managers at Los Angeles County (LA County DPSS Website), DPSS South Special District 07. The study will present information from previous literature to sustain how the complex term can affect the structures of leadership and aims at collecting data about current leadership strategies used at South Special District 07. Additionally, this study will explain how employees respond to certain leadership practices and present outcomes due to both positive and negative implementation of leadership practices. It is important to conduct this study as leadership is the foundation to an efficient organization, without it, the organizations' goals are at stake.