There are so many leadership styles being touted by different experts, what does it really take to be effective in today’s workplace?
From my experience, I’ve found that the most effective leadership style is when you are a “pivot master.”
It’s the new dance at work, shake and shimmy, rotate, revolve, turn. Pivot is today’s word.
As a leader, you need to be able to turn on a dime and engage individuals in many situations. Think of it this way, would you ever eat only hamburgers and nothing else for months on end? Of course not.
And would you wear the same clothes day after day for a year or so? It would never happen.
So, why would you use only one way of communicating and leading day after day, month after month, year after year?
Use different ways to increase productivity and move through all kinds of situations skillfully. This is the art of leadership.
Yes, you have “your way,” it’s like your signature, unique to you. And your personality will dictate which style is the most comfortable for you. However, learning to adapt to all kinds of situations, to shift in a moment’s notice to get the results you want and need, that’s the foundation of powerful leadership.
Here are the 3 key leadership styles that you need to have in your tool box:
1. Be Specific:
You are in charge here. You draw the picture of what needs to be done in fine detail. It’s all been thought out. You get to the point quickly and don’t really want lots of input. You assign the work and the dates of when it needs to be done. Think of it like going into battle. All the details have been worked out and you hand the blueprint to your staff and make sure everyone knows their roles and responsibilities. You spell it out in clear and certain terms.
The down side: Often this type of leader is seen as a persecutor (aka bully) and individuals talk behind your back and smile and agree in front of you.
2. Find Consensus:
Everyone has a say. This takes longer and often requires excellent conflict resolution skills. This means taking the time to find the middle ground between total assent and total disagreement. There is a deep desire for harmony and cooperation. All sides are heard before final decisions are made. When there are still some naysayers, time is taken to figure out how to establish rapport and get all going in the same direction. There can be voting on direction, in fact, often several votes are needed to get to an alliance of what is the best way to move forward. Once there is unity movement toward the goal can be swift and positive.
The down side: You are seen as a pleaser, someone who is wishy-washy and can be swayed easily to change your mind.
3. Offer personalization:
You have taken the time to know each person and how best to approach them. Those who need details are given them. Those who want to know the big picture and then figure it out themselves are offered that opportunity. Those who have lots of questions can ask and those who want to move fast and furious are given the room to do so. Supervision is minimal and only given when needed.
The down side: You are seen as an avoider who does not want to make the difficult decisions and would rather let people trip and fall rather than take responsibility for the end results of the projects.
It is a mélange of these three ways of leading that creates amazing success. Remember, it’s the pivot that makes it all work.
There are many personality traits that are at the bottom of why we prefer one type of leading to another. What is the one method you use to be an effective leader?
Which of the key leadership styles is the one you need to put into your personal tool box?