Essential Question: Why are elements of all leadership styles important to manage change?
In order to create change an effective leader must be able to address the needs of all employees. I think a leader needs to have a variety of skills and be able to communicate with a diverse population.
Fullan (2014) writes about the six leadership styles, which he identified from (Goleman, 2000):
Coercive- the leader demands compliance.
Authoritative- the leader mobilizes people toward a vision.
Affiliative- the leader creates harmony and builds emotional bounds.
Democratic- the leader forges consensus through participation.
Pacesetting- the leader sets high standards for performance.
Coaching- the leader develops people for the future.
We have all see one type of these leaders or more, but for a leader to truly be effective, I think they need to be a little of all the leadership styles. According to Fullan, “Leaders who have mastered four or more- especially the authoritative, democratic, affiliative, and coaching style- have the best climate and business performance.”
As Fullan (2014) also states, “Effective leaders have the right sensitivity to implementation.” When change occurs, some people feel scared or nervous. This is when the leader needs to employ an affiliative or coaching style to encourage the person through. Elements of authoritative leadership help as well to model confidence. Some people need that type of leadership to keep them going. The problem starts when the leader is only authoritative or only affiliative or only a coach (Fullan, 2014).
Fullan writes, “Leaders who have a combination of styles have a sense of moral purpose, measure success in terms of results, do things to get the organization going.” Leaders have to be able to communicate and deal with a diverse group of people and that requires the ability to use a variety of leadership approaches. When people see their leader using different kinds of leadership skills they know the leader appreciates and is prepared to work with a diverse group of colleagues who respond in different ways to change.
Owens (2015) list 4 traits that every leader should have:
1. Honesty- 84% in a survey from 2014 consider honesty the most essential trait.
2. Openness- this refers to how a person is open to new ideas and experiences.
3. Decisiveness- people want someone who weighs the options.
4. Conscientiousness- this is how organized, thoughtful and forward thinking a individual is.
These are important traits that I believe fall under the leadership traits that all good leaders have.
As Fullan (2014) says, “Leadership is complicated and it requires combining elements that do not go together easily.” A person should be approachable, listen and show their employees that their opinions matter. “You will FAIL if you are not approachable, humble, and available as a leader. You will fail because you have not developed the trust needed to succeed”(Roland, 2015). This is why it is so important to have a variety of skills from different leadership styles. A leader like this will be able to handle change more effectively and be a better leader for their group. Because people are diverse, a leader must use flexible methods to connect with all kinds of people, respecting their styles and meeting them where they are at. The person who can do this is the rare outstanding leader who can successfully handle change and help others through it.
Fullan, M. (2014). Leading in a Culture of Change. Somerset, NJ, USA: John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated. Retrieved from http://www.ebrary.com
Owens, M. (2015). 4 Personality Traits That Make You an Effective Leader. Retrieved October 30, 2015, from http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/245394
Roland, J. (2015). Leadership for Dummies, it is not that complicated. Retrieved October 30, 2015, from http://sbcvoices.com/leadership-for-dummies-it-is-not-that-complicated/