Leaders need to be able to have a flexible leadership style to meet changes in the organization’s needs and those of its staff. Leaders must now know when to change their management style and where leadership strategies align with new paradigms. And this is where situational leadership comes in.
Situational Leadership is not based on the specific skills of the leader, instead, the leader may modify the style of managing to meet the requirements. Situational leadership helps to develop people and workgroups, It also helps to bring the best in people and helps in uniting and offering the same kind of leadership style across the organization.
The situational leadership model helps you to lead your team in a way they feel more comfortable and appreciated.
Defining Situational Leadership
Situational leadership theory, also known as the situational leadership model, is modeling created by Paul Hersey and Ken Blanchard, originally developed while working on the management of organizational behavior. They presented this concept in 1969 as “the life-cycle theory of leadership.” This model gives a framework on how leaders can assess an employee’s development and adapt their leadership approach towards them.
Ken Blanchard and Paul Hersey are the pioneers of the Situational Leadership Theory. They developed in 1969 with a strong belief that there is no “one size fits all” leadership style. The situational leadership model provides a framework for leaders to diagnose the development level of an employee or team. Once this is determined, they can adapt their leadership approach to offer different leadership styles that suit the situation at hand.
Situational leadership styles
Situational leaders tend to follow either supportive behavior or directive behavior. They stay in close contact with their team members and give needed support and this creates a better working environment. There are four situational leadership styles: Directing, Participating, delegating, and coaching style.
Understanding the situational leadership model
In the business world, situational leaders may help managers make adjustments to their working environment. The ability to adapt to leadership style is an essential trait every future leader must know. The situational management model is based on employees’ skills and commitment levels.
Why is this the best leadership style? This leadership model considers the complexity of the task, the quality of direction, and support from the leadership. This flexibility allows leaders to meet each situation with the leadership style that empowers their employees and brings out the best in them.
Leadership coaches can help you become a better leader irrespective of the style of leadership you choose the author said. Instead of delegating tasks to them, you take your time and show them how to perform tasks.
What does a situational leader do?
Situational leadership requires leading to take on various leadership styles. Most people tend to be comforted or attracted by a certain management style. This may make it challenging to develop the full scope required to be an effective situation leader.
There’s a difference in the leadership style depending on where an individual wants to be placed to produce their desired outcome. Great leaders have to manage employees effectively by customizing their leadership styles and adapting- a vital skill for success.
Situational leadership often takes more effort and too much responsibility. However, Like building up a house you have many tools and leadership approaches for a successful business model.
Examples of Situational Leadership
The Hersey Blanchard model of leadership can be seen worldwide by many fortune 500 companies like Adobe, the WD-40 Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, British Telecom Genentech the San Diego Padres, the Royal New Zealand Navy, and many others.
Because the strengths and weaknesses of team members are constantly changing, many sports teams often need to adapt their leadership styles accordingly. Situational leaders need to be aware that a player with different skills or experience might come along unexpectedly – requiring them to take responsibility as they fit into the new situation.
Why is situational leadership effective?
Situational leadership is a flexible leadership style that adapts to the requirements of staff and environments. The concept is intuitive to many leaders and is easy to implement. Leaders examine the situation and decide which leadership style best helps in that process. They analyze and adjust their strategy to help meet goals and objectives.
Situational leaders help employees build strong relationships with their teams by adapting to their skill level. As such, this creates a more productive work environment in which workers are valued as individuals while leaders will keep close contact with team members.
This theory is extremely sound because it identifies how human beings function in the world. In this theory, leaders must evaluate the situation and decide which way to act based on the analysis of how others are reacting, evaluating the results, and taking necessary corrective measures.
This process is continuous throughout the lifespan of a leader, but changes based on circumstances, situations, and goals. For example, if an organization adopts a new, more aggressive stance, a number of leaders may react aggressively, even aggressively too far. This could cause internal turmoil, increase the number of people displaced, and lead to rebellion.
What are the three skills of a situational leader?
Diagnosis: In order for a leader to be successful, they must possess an awareness of their surroundings and how these factors can affect them as well as others within the situation. Without this understanding, leaders are not able to make informed decisions or take appropriate steps in response to what’s happening around them. Diagnosing is all about learning more from your environment so that people will listen when it counts most!
Flexibility: In today’s world, flexibility is a key skill for effective leadership. If you are not willing to adjust your style and strategy on the fly when needed, then don’t expect success in this ever-changing environment. Flexibility is the key to making sure you’re always in control.
Partnering for Performance: The best leaders know that leadership is not a size fits all and each person has their own style. Whether they are just starting out or have been on the job for years, you need to be able to change your approach in order to get results with them. Partnering allows both of you to open up conversations about what will work better so everyone can succeed.
What are the advantages of situational leadership?
First, you need to know what is situational leadership so you can understand the advantages of this situational leadership style.
Situational leaders focus on short-term needs, which allows them to tailor training scenarios for new workers that will bring them up quickly. This advantage enables the leader to find educational opportunities for their established workers as well; it gives every worker a chance each day of improving themselves in some way or another. Although they can not force direct reports to take these developmental opportunities, there are still positive responses when communication about development options is made available by situational leaders.
Comfortable Environment for Workers
Creating a comfortable environment for employees is an important step in successful leadership. A workplace that offers workers many opportunities to grow and contribute can lead to better morale, more pride from the worker, increased productivity and loyalty.
The best thing about creating this type of work culture is it’s not hard at all! You just need to invest time into ensuring you are keeping your team happy. Followers trust and follow your directive
Socio-emotional support for subordinates
Leaders should be mindful of their tone when speaking to subordinates. A professional demeanor is always advised, as it encourages socio-emotional support for the individual and opens up a dialogue between manager and subordinate
What are situational leadership skills?
A situational leader should be flexible to motivate a team. This leadership strategy fits almost everywhere and that is why it is very effective. The situational leadership strategy also goes hand in hand with basic business principles.
The situational leader may choose the delegating style where they delegate tasks and offer minimal guidance or offer a telling style when they feel an employee needs guidance. A company succeeds when a leader adapts his leadership to benefit the team and the company or business at large.
Overall, this is a very helpful text for people who are just beginning to explore the subject of situational leadership style. It will likely serve as a great jumping-off point for future studies. In particular, I highly recommend reading chapters that include such topics as Learning to Adjust, Adapt, and Lead, Leadership Styles and the Power of Situations, The Long Shadow, and The Team Project. All of these chapters have rich detail and excellent examples that will help students develop a solid knowledge base regarding the concepts behind situational leadership.