Finding out your leadership style is a journey. Leadership style refers to one’s characteristics when leading people. In leading people, we often perceive this as managing people, and we often identify our type of leadership style, with the purpose of our leadership. We may lead for political or social causes, inspiration or motivation, or even creativity and production. There are several models of leadership styles thoroughly studied and observed, that have been proven effective and widely used by most. However, we as leaders need to identify what is our leadership style before we take on that role.
We tend to adopt a certain type of leadership style. We may have experienced it from the people who previously led us, or from the people we worked with, or even pick it up from our friends and family who are leaders. There is neither a test nor exam you need to go through for you to be classified under a are a variety of leadership profiles and assessments that have gained popularity over time that can be investigated for leadership strengths, behaviour preferences and specific leadership style. The best way to find out what is your leadership style is by assessing yourself, the people you will lead, and your purpose. We do not want to be typical leaders who are not flexible and whom people will simply follow blindly. We would like to be effective leaders who are followed with respect and purpose. We strive be that kind of leader.
Are you just finding out your leadership style? Then, we should check these important qualities first:
As a leader, we should be certain of our personality type and our limitations. We must be confident with our capabilities, ideals and our flexibility. It is also imperative that we get to know the people that we will be leading. Cultivating a relationship with your team or the people you lead is important in building rapport, getting support and influencing them in being one with you, in your cause. Knowing what works for your team, given the resources they have, matters in finding out what the leadership style should be, for you to be an effective leader.
Leaders are often faced with the responsibility of making decisions and taking accountability for the outcome of those decisions. For us to become effective leaders, we must take on a leadership style with the consideration of the objective of the team, company or the people. After assessing the personality of the people you will lead, we take a look at their capacity to reach the objective. We can adjust our leadership style, and manage our resources to succeed, but we must always bear in mind that yes, we make the decision, however, it is the people we lead who will work to reach our goal or objective. The objective must be rolled out clearly, the resources on hand should be adequate and fitting and the timeline must be reasonable. The objective must be communicated properly regardless of your leadership style. Proper communication reduces, if not eliminates the possibility of confusion and of course, miscommunication. Success depends on the decision you make as a leader, the communication of the objective, and the ability of the team to carry it out.
Limitations define the extent of a leader’s power of authority. A clear cut definition of a leader’s limitations provides leaders room for innovation, creativity, flexibility, and liberty to make decisions and execute orders or influence people. We as leaders must be fully aware of our role’s limitations for us to make useful and effective decisions. As previously mentioned, leaders make decisions and also take responsibility for the outcome of those decisions. Depending on our leadership style, we get to be flexible in compacting or stretching tasks, isolating or spreading the workload, and in coming up with the means to reach the objective.
Our leadership style also entails what we value as leaders, and what the people we lead, value. What is valuable to our team, group, company or organization? As leaders, we have our principles and more often than not, these principles are set in stone in every one of us. Again, depending on your leadership style, our individual values, our team values, our company or organization’s values, come up with sound decisions that we can fully support, and stand firm by with. We take accountability for our decisions because of our principles led us to make them.
Based on the above-mentioned characteristics or behaviours of leadership, we can then find out what type of leadership style we want to adopt when leading. There is no short cuts to finding your leadership style nor there is any right or wrong leadership. We can take on any model and adopt the leadership style we feel would best work for us, the people we lead and the decisions we need to make. An effective leader makes decisions and works together with the people they lead. We just need to find out what works for us as leaders and the people we lead in reaching our goal as a team, company, group or organisation.
If you are still trying to figure out what your leadership style is and you need help, contact me today.