Are you thinking about implementing the Situational Leadership Theory? Do you want to incorporate the components of this theory of leadership into your own management style? The basic function of this theory is that leaders can think and adapt to any situation they encounter so that the best style of leadership can be used. This makes a team more efficient and projects become easier to complete.
In order to implement this theory of leadership, you will need to have 5 key components added to your style of leadership so that it can be successful.
1. Time Must Be Taken to Observe An Environment
It can be easy to just skim over the environment to focus on the tasks that are at hand. The tasks are just one component of the working environment, however, and ignoring the rest of the sensory input could mean that tasks are completed incorrectly or less efficiently than they could be completed. Look, listen, and feel the environment first and then react.
2. You Must Be Proactive Even When You Must Be Reactive
To have complete information for a logical choice, a complete observation must be had. Being proactive in the Situational Leadership Theory means that a leader is taking the time to build 1-on-1 relationships with the people with whom they will be interacting. Without these relationships, a complete observation of who a person happens to be can never be made.
3. Leadership Doesn’t Happen on a Team Level Only
Situational leadership tends to fail because a general perspective is taken by the leader. There must be an overview of a team and a project, of course, and this can dictate a certain leadership style. There must also be a realization that specific people might need specific leadership styles to maximize their success as well. By recognizing every person’s unique strengths, a leadership style can be used to enhance them.
4. A Leader Practicing This Theory of Leadership Doesn’t Get Any Down Time
The moment that a leader steps aside and allows the environment to flow around them without observing it, the leadership theory breaks down and so does the effectiveness of a team. Leaders cannot make assumptions that aren’t based on actual observations. If they do, then they are gambling with the future outcomes that can be achieved. This is why situational leaders are unable to check out during the day.
5. Delegation is an Important Part of the Development Process
Part of being a situational leader means allowing direct reports to work on their own leadership skills so they can be leaders one day as well. There’s no substitute for actual experience and that’s why delegation is an integral component of this leadership theory. Leaders who refuse to delegate responsibilities to others are not actually practicing situational leadership.
Situational leaders are the best equipped to create productive work environments and a better chance for success. By incorporating these key components, every leader has a chance to taste this success for themselves.