Situational Leadership: When Business Asks for Adjustments

In the business world, there is top-level, middle, and low-level management. Individuals in the top-level management are the ones delegated with overseeing the overall running of a business. They are regarded to as leaders, and each leader implements his or her own style of leadership. There are a couple of leading styles. This article will cover situational leadership, and all that it entails.

People have different personalities, which explain why every leader adopts a unique leadership model in order to perform his or her obligations and to encourage the entire workforce.

Group of individuals working together

What Is Situational Leadership?

Situational leadership is a leadership style that is adopted by a lot of leaders and entrepreneurs alike. Before you understand why they prefer this type of leadership, you need to first see what situational leadership is. Situational leadership was developed by Kenneth Blanchard and Paul Hersey.

This leadership alludes to when the leader in top management position must change his style in order to accommodate the development level of his or her subordinates. According to the situational leadership theory, there are four leadership styles.

  • The first is referred to as telling, whereby leaders tell their followers how and what to do.
  • The second is selling, whereby a leader has to sell his or her ideas to make the followers adopt the process.
  • Next is participating, where the leader lets the people to participate more in the decision making process.
  • The fourth style is delegating, whereby the leader’s involvement is minimal and the completion of tasks is left to the subordinates.

Who Uses Situational Leadership?

Effective leadership is among the most essential factors that determine the success of a business. It is imperative for a leader to be able to delegate assignments, communicate important messages to his or her subordinates, and to motivate the workforce. Situational leadership is adopted in organizations that require the leader to adjust his or her style to fit in with the skill level of his or her team.

This style of leadership is flexible and organizations all over the world have adopted it. The reasons why leaders are adopting this style of leadership is to develop the workforce behind them and to build a harmonious relationship with their teams in order to motivate them. Situational leadership has been adopted by:

  • Presidents in the event of a crisis;
  • Surgeons during an emergency;
  • Businessmen when there is a need to adjust to what is happening in an organization.

Ways in Which Situational Leadership Can Help Your Business

The situational leadership model is one of the most notable and effective leadership styles adopted across the globe.

  • Using this style of leadership can help boost the performance of your business. This is because it is quite easy to understand and implement.
  • Situational leadership also serves as a means for leaders to optimize their influence in the organization to bring forth a positive impact.
  • Moreover, leaders who adopt this style of leadership are capable of maintaining a high-level sense of awareness to determine their organization’s strength and areas that need to develop.
  • Situational leadership also helps to influence the performance of the organization by helping management establish when to be consistent and when to adjust an approach for the better.
  • Your business can benefit from this type of leadership because it helps to propel behavioral change to achieve positive results by utilizing a common and simple style of leadership.
  • Furthermore, situational leadership can help build a productive workforce by increasing the development of new employees and those that are new to certain tasks.

Retro colorized businesspeople

4 Key Steps in Building Situational Leadership

Situational leadership is usually a process that follows a logical order of sequence. Also, it requires an organization’s management to determine what needs to be prioritized in the business and to assess the skill level of their employees. Managers then use this to select the best approach for the existing situation.

To set up an approach that enhances growth and development in an organization, the management has to undertake the following tasks:

1. Evaluate Tasks and Priorities

To achieve an effective leadership approach, the first step entails evaluating the most important tasks in your business. Identifying these priorities makes it easier for you to adjust your current position to fit with a leadership style that fits the situation better.

For instance, the management may need to adopt the directing style of leadership if the most important task entails production.

2. Evaluate the Readiness of Your Workforce

By readiness, you need to assess the skill level, the know-how, and the qualities required of your employees to achieve a particular task. When you notice that your employees possess the right skill-set, then you can adopt a hands-off leadership approach.

However, if your workforce is new or handling a new task, you may need to take a directing leadership approach to communicate what is necessary of them effectively.

3. Selecting the Leadership Style

After assessing the most important tasks and determining the skill level of your workforce, you will be ready to select the leadership style that best suits your situation.

You could choose from one of the four styles of situational leadership:

  • Telling;
  • Selling;
  • Participating;
  • Delegating.

4. Reviewing the Performance

Generally, the situational model entails three steps. But to be an efficient leader, it is imperative to check on the performance of the business to determine whether the style that you adopted is working effectively.

Moreover, it is important to assess the readiness of your workers in handling the prioritized tasks so that in case any adjustment is needed, you will know what to do.

Taking the Lead

Situational leadership is a flexible style of leadership that allows you to adopt to the existing work environment to meet the needs of the business.

This style of leadership is not based on the precise skills of the leader. Rather, the leader adjusts the style of leadership/management to suit the needs of the business.

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