Effective Leadership Behaviors

Leadership Behaviors

Leadership Behaviors are easy to understand, though perhaps requiring effort to perform consistently. Behavior change gives every leader a path forward to increasing effectiveness. Behaviors can be learned whereas characteristics, such as charisma, seem inborn and more difficult to practice.

Kouzes and Posner have develop a straight forward series of leadership practices(behaviors)

These 5 practices line up well with leadership characteristics and traits. By clicking on each practice, you can see additional information and characteristics.

Working internationally, I've found that this model is well received in most cultures and can be applied in a practical way to leadership development. Older versions of the supporting video should be screened for cultural issues. One old version shows drinking beer, which is not appropriate in some cultures.

Effective Management

Situational Leadership also relies on a few key behaviors. However Situational Leadership is more effective management than leadership as it focuses on delegation or learning new tasks, a small part of the overall picture.

Situational Leadership points out how the manager can adapt to the follower. The manager assesses the follower in terms of the follower's relationship to a particular task. As each person is aware of and adapts to progress or the need to step back and relearn, the employee performance improves. This aligns with one part of contributing to a high quality leader member exchange which is the manager understanding where the employee is what and what the person needs to succeed.

Blanchard and Hersey developed a 4 part model:

  • Directing - when an employee is new to a task or job
  • Coaching - the stage in which the employee is doing the task but tentatively and probably not perfectly
  • Supporting - employee knows the task but lacks some confidence
  • Delegating - employee is up to speed and can handle the job
  • Blanchard and Hersey eventually parted ways. Some models retain the language used here while other versions will have somewhat different names.
  • This model is practical and appreciated for its practicality by managers and supervisors. It is a quick tool that can be immediately applied. While there is an assessment tool that gives the manager or supervisor a profile and also information on how well they can flex into other styles, it is not required for teaching the model. Managers and Supervisors quickly grasp the idea.

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