Leadership tools and models may come and go but there are a few ‘old faithfuls’ that hang around and still make sense when I share them with participants on our development programmes or in 1-1 coaching.
One of these is the Situational Leadership Model originally created by Hersey and Blanchard. Most of you will be familiar with the model, which suggests that there is no single ‘best’ style of leadership. The most successful leaders are those that adapt their leadership style to the ‘maturity’ in terms of experience and skill level of the individual or group (in the particular situation in question) they are attempting to lead or influence.
A couple of key things that seem to resonate with my clients when we talk about the model are:
The model is called ‘Situational’ for a reason so it’s important to consider the individual’s level of maturity each time we are looking for them to do something for us. It can be useful to have an open conversation with the individual about the piece of work and jointly consider where they are on the maturity/experience scale in relation to the task and, based on that, to agree the most appropriate style of leadership.
The next time you have a task to assign to one of your team, I recommend that you pause for a moment and consider which the most appropriate style of leadership might be. The Situational Leadership model is an oldie but goodie when it comes to providing a way of thinking this through.
Feel free to share your thoughts on other tools and models that still work for you, even though some may consider them a bit ‘old school’.