Leadership Styles: Measuring and Refining Your Skills

Why do some leaders flourish while others fail? Effective leaders positively influence the behavior of their followers, getting them to work toward shared goals. But leaders have different ways in which they characteristically influence others. One leader may typically appeal to team members’ competitive drive. Another leader may rally the troops around a cause. Yet another leader may bolster their self-confidence. Still another leader may guide team members according to carefully laid plans. Whose way of leading is best? It all depends.

Current research shows that the most effective leaders know that their knee-jerk reactions to situations may not always prove effective. They know they must make deliberate choices about their way of leading. Effective leaders first evaluate the situation. Then, depending on the specific requirements of the situation, they may deliberately choose to follow their natural inclinations, leading others in their characteristic way. Or they may choose to modify their leadership styles to suit the situation.