Situational Approach to Leadership Essay
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Your Response to What situational approach to leadership do you prefer? Why?
Situational influences constrain a leader to adapt his or her style of leadership to the situation at hand (McCleskey, 2014). Despite the many situational approaches to leadership, I prefer the approach where I participate and support my followers or those I lead. This way, I am able to pass more responsibility to my followers. Imperatively, while I provide the directions, the decisions to carry out responsivities ultimately lie with my followers. My participation and being supportive is ensure that I provide instant feedbacks to my followers. The feedbacks and praises increase their confidence and motivation for the tasks they have completed. It should be noted that I prefer this because of the high competence and maturity of my followers.
The situational approach to leadership that I prefer is the Path-goal Model. I like this model most because it’s an approach I use often. I think it’s very important to always consider a flexible approach when leading, as any situation can change abruptly. Although I know there are four different tyles, I tend to choose the participative leadership style whenever I’m working with a group/team. It’s easier to work with people, and finish objectives, if everyone can feel like they’re contributing equally. However, I’ve worked with a lot of people who uses the achievement-oriented style, which carries a lot more incentive to accomplish any task – to me at least.
If I could hone one of the situational approaches to leadership, I would like to think that I would use the participating style. I enjoy having my employees dedicated and involved in the planning and decision making process. Though it does require a certain level of maturity of both the manager and the employees, the participating style seems like a perfect medium of blending the team. While the manager does maintain a role of authority, the employees have the maturity, but also the freedom and voice to be able to contribute ideas to the discussion and possible final outcome. I feel like a team where everyone can participate and feel valued and respected is a team that can feed off of each other for the better and grow stronger over time. Participative work requires a degree of trust that I don’t think is met as easily in any other version of situational leadership.
I believe I prefer the path-goal model. It determines the objectives and clarifies how to achieve them. It also incorporates the situation and leadership styles into this model. I think each situation and leadership style is important to find the best way to address things. I think my leadership style is a bit of all four. I do like to have structure, but I take the employees input into account. I also like to set high goals and reward those who meet or exceed those goals. This, http://www.practical-management.com/Leadership-Development/Path-Goal-Leadership.html, actually has some good, detailed information on Path-Goal Leadership.
I found a bit of difficulty choosing just one approach when it came to this question. In my mind the theory of participative leadership sounds very attractive in that it allows for a group effort. A group effort can sometimes be very strong, but that also depends on the group you have built or have come to be in charge of. If the group you are charged is not cohesive and is not strong in the decision making areas it would make no sense to use participative leadership. On the other hand, a directive leader may lose out on a great many good ideas if the thought process is simply my way or the highway. A well equipped group should be trusted to complete in a timely manner with a free range of motion when it comes to decision making. All in all I am not sure focusing to much on one form of leadership is a good idea. Now in a perfect world scenario I would like to be a participitve leader. I think there is strength in numbers and if the group is well equipped I see no issue with dealing out some decision making to the group.