Event Date: 10/28/2019 (2:00 pm EDT - 3:00 pm EDT)
Why do some leaders flourish while others fail? Effective leaders positively influence the behavior of their followers, getting them to work toward shared goals. But leaders have different ways in which they characteristically influence others. One leader may typically appeal to team members’ competitive drive. Another leader may rally the troops around a cause. Yet another leader may bolster their self-confidence. Still another leader may guide team members according to carefully laid plans. Whose way of leading is best? It all depends.
Current research shows that the most effective leaders know that their knee-jerk reactions to situations may not always prove effective. They know they must make deliberate choices about their way of leading. Effective leaders first evaluate a situation. Then, depending on the specific requirements of the situation, they may deliberately choose to follow their natural inclinations, leading others in their characteristic way. Or they may choose to modify their leadership styles to suit the situation.
This webinar is for trainers and managers who do training, and is based upon the HRDQ product What’s My Leadership Style?, a training program that gives both newly emerging and experienced leaders and managers the tools and techniques for developing and refining their skills. This learning resource will help your organization retain employees and clients, make better decisions, and improve performance. Learn more about What’s My Leadership Style? at HRDQ.
Participants Will Learn:
- Identify personal leadership style
- Learn how to capitalize on style strengths
- Discover how to minimize style trouble spots
- Learn how to “flex” personal style to interact most effectively with others
Who Should Attend:
- Training and HR professionals
- Independent consultants
- Managers delivering training
Presented By: Peggy Greenberg
Peggy Greenberg is President of Peggy Greenberg Training and Consulting. Peggy has over 30 years of experience in staff and organization development. Prior to starting her own business, Peggy was the Director of the Office of Education and Training for the United States Senate. Her office was responsible for the training and development of Senate staff in Washington DC and throughout the country. She has also held Director level positions in large health care systems in Washington, DC and Boston. Since starting her own training and consulting firm, Peggy’s clients have included the Department of Justice, US Senate, Glenridge Healthcare Solutions, CAQH, K12, and the City Of Alexandria to name a few.
Peggy is passionate about the importance of lifelong learning and the value of developing employees to their full potential. Her clients know her as someone that is very skilled at competently assessing needs and designing learning that is both engaging and relevant. Peggy’s passion for continuous development drives her to always seek new ideas, concepts and methods to enhance her professional skills.
In addition to her undergraduate degree in Nursing Peggy also holds a graduate degree in Adult and Continuing Education From Boston University.
Sara Lindmont: Hey everyone and welcome to today’s Webinar, Leadership Styles; Measuring and Refining Your Skills hosted by HRDQ-U and presented by Peggy Greenberg. My name is Sara and I will moderate today’s Webinar. The webinar will last about an hour. If you have any questions, go ahead and type them into the control panel on your go-to Webinar area on the side there. You should have a little box that says chat. You can click that little arrow, it’ll give you an open space.
You can type in any questions or feedback or comments and hit send and that’ll come through to us and we’ll either answer them as we can or after the session by email. Today’s Webinar content is from our workshop and assessment titled What’s My Leadership Style. So if you are interested in delivering this training within your organization, please contact HRDQ. And, please, give a warm welcome to our presenter today, Peggy Greenberg.
Peggy Greenberg: Thank you so much Sara and let me also extend a warm welcome to all of you. I’m delighted to be with you for this hour to talk about Leadership Styles: Measuring and Refining Your Skills. Let’s first take a look at what we’re gonna be discussing today. I like to refer to this as our roadmap for today’s session. First, we’re gonna talk about defining leadership and some theories of leadership. I think it really helps us to get some background information on exactly what are we talking about. It’s a fairly big topic as all of you know, I’m sure.
And then we’re gonna talk about what’s leadership style. What does it actually mean? And you’re gonna have the opportunity, based on some descriptions that I give you, of four different leadership styles. You’re gonna have an opportunity to identify your leadership style. And along with that, we all have a leadership style and our styles each have some trouble spots, some things that we need to watch out for, that we need to be mindful of so that we cannot inappropriately use our leadership style depending on the situation or the people or the project or whatever that we are trying to lead.
We’re gonna look at those trouble spots. And then we’re gonna talk about how do we style flex, how can we actually flex our styles so that we can make sure that, again, it’s appropriate for the situation and it’s appropriate for the people, the project or whatever that we’re trying to lead. And if you have any questions, you can type them in to the chat into text box, as Sara said, and we will answer those questions for you. You’re probably wondering who is this person that’s running this session and what does she know about leadership and why is she the person that’s leading this session today?
I have had a number of … All of my career, I was in leadership positions in organizations and I served as director of training in a number of healthcare organizations. And I was also the director of the office of Education and training for the United States Senate. I have been an executive coach and a consultant and a trainer and a moderator for a number of leadership development programs and products. I have a keen appreciation, really, of the importance of recognizing leadership styles.
I know from many years of personal experience, again, in both formal and informal leadership roles that it’s imperative that we not only know our leadership style but, again, we also know when to flex our style according to what’s going on, according to the situation. I’ve also used the leadership style assessment that this program is based on in a number of different organizations. And I’ve found it to be a really helpful thing for people to assess their own leadership style in order to, again, figure out what’s most appropriate for what situation and how can I be sure that I’m executing the leadership style that I need to at this moment in time.
The first question, obviously, is what is leadership? We’re gonna do a chat. If you can just chat in your responses to that question, I’m sure you have many different ideas about what is leadership. I’ll be quiet here for a second so you’ll all have the opportunity to do that.
Sara Lindmont: Peggy, we have a lot coming in already. You want me to summarize those for you?
Peggy Greenberg: Please. I’d appreciate that, Sara.
Sara Lindmont: Yeah, good. We have several who are saying lead by example. A person who can help others become great.
Peggy Greenberg: Mmh, I like that.
Sara Lindmont: Someone else says leadership is walking the talk.
Peggy Greenberg: All right.
Sara Lindmont: A lot are saying around the terms of influencing others, persuading others, getting people aligned with the vision, so that concept of influencing. Another summarizes it as getting groups of people behind common goals.
Peggy Greenberg: Ok, okay. All right. Well, you all have really covered the waterfront in terms of what is the definition of leadership? I think that all of your responses are totally accurate because what we know is that leadership actually is quite simply the process of influencing others to work goals … the process of influencing others to work towards goals. And being a leader has nothing to do with titles or positions in organizations as a matter of fact. And I think many organizations are now recognizing that we need leaders in all segments of an organization, not just in our management ranks or our executive ranks.
We need people to be leaders at all levels because it’s the process of influencing other people to work towards common goals. Again, it really has nothing to do with titles or positions in an organization. We certainly hope that those individuals who hold supervisory or management or team leader positions, or certainly executive, we hope they are leaders as well. Because, obviously, it’s quite clearly tied to their roles that they can influence others to work towards common goals. We know some things about what all leaders need to do, no matter where they are in an organization.
We know that, first of all, they have to establish trusting relationships with those they want to lead. You can’t lead anyone if they don’t trust you. None of us will follow someone that we don’t trust so establishing trusting relationships is just core to being an effective leader. We also know that all leaders need to have, no matter who they’re leading and for what reason, they’ve got to create that common understanding of where are we going? Where are we heading? Where’s this the ship headed and what’s the plan?
How are we gonna get there? Who gonna do what? What are the roles? What are the tasks? What are the deliverables? We know that all leaders need to encourage and support everyone’s effort so a good leader recognizes that people don’t all bring exactly the same things to the table but we need the competencies and the skills and the insights of everyone. A good leader encourages and supports everyone’s efforts. And, finally, all leaders need to evaluate and keep everyone informed about the progress toward the goals.
That’s what the leader does, really looks to how are we doing, how are we doing relative to where we said we would be by a certain point in time. And, again, a leader needs to be the one to take that responsibility to keep everyone informed so that everyone’s, again, continuing to head in the same direction. A series of leadership have been around for as long as there have been leaders, which is all time, and theorists have been searching for a definition of leadership. And during the past century, there have been three major schools of thought that have been developed relative to how do you define leadership. What is it?
And the first theory of leadership was the trait era that took place from about the turn of the 20th century to the mid-1940s. The reigning belief at that time and during the trait era was that leaders are born and that heredity justifies the status quo. And by the mid-20th century though, we started to see that this wasn’t necessarily true as research really couldn’t confirm that there were definitely certain personality traits that positively correlated with effective leadership. Again, the belief that certain people are born leaders really started to be questioned, highly questioned.
And so then we went into the behavioral era and this took place from about the late 1930s through the 1950s. And rather than trying to identify personality traits, what researchers started to do was to ask the question what do leaders do? What behaviors do leaders exhibit? And some Ohio State studies established that there was task and relationship based behaviors that were key to effective leadership. Again, it was very much answering the question what do leaders do. And behavioral research actually led to the identification of categories of leadership behaviors but the research still hadn’t provided a complete picture of effective leadership.
And that brings us to the era that we are in now which is the situational era, which really came into being in the early 1960s and is still present today. I’m sure many of you are familiar with situational leadership. Maybe you’ve studied situational leadership. Fiedler in 1967 demonstrated that to be most affective leaders needed to adapt their characteristic behaviors to different situations. Effectiveness depends on context. It’s not one size fits all. It’s not one type of leadership for every single different situation.
And I’m sure many of you have experienced this in your careers, that you can’t always apply the same set of leadership behaviors to every single situation. Sometimes you have to make a quick decision. Sometimes you have to be the visionary. Sometimes you have to really think about what’s the impact that this decision is gonna have on other people. Effectiveness really depends on context. Now that we have some definition of leadership and background on some of the important theories of leadership, the next question is what is style. And style is the way a person, each of us, usually behaves.
That’s our style, the way that we usually behave in most situations. And Aristotle once said, “We are what we repeatedly do.” Let’s test this out with a poll. And what I want you to do is I want you to think of a coworker and predict how they would behave if they were put in charge of a project. Okay? Would your coworker, A, leap into action and tell others how that project was gonna be done or would your coworker carefully outline of procedure for other people to follow on the project after analyzing the relevant data about what needed to be done?
Or would your coworker gather everybody’s ideas on how the project should proceed or would your coworker get everyone excited about the prospect this project presents? We’re gonna launch this as a poll and if you could answer A, B, C, or D and make sure you hit submit so that we can capture those poll results.
Sara Lindmont: Good. We’ve got the poll open and I can see people are responding so click on the radio button if you’re not sure how to do that and then hit submit and so the answer will come through. I’ll give it another couple of seconds here and make sure we have everybody. Okay. Here are the results. Peggy, are you ready?
Peggy Greenberg: I’m ready.
Sara Lindmont: A, we had 31%
Peggy Greenberg: Okay.
Sara Lindmont: B, we had 25%
Peggy Greenberg: Okay.
Sara Lindmont: C was 36%.
Peggy Greenberg: Okay.
Sara Lindmont: And D was 8%
Peggy Greenberg: All right. Okay, it looks like C, 36%. Most of you have a coworker that would gather everybody’s ideas on how the project would proceed. And then the next highest number would be the coworkers who leap into action and tell others how the project will be done. Again, your predictions are probably accurate because you’ve become familiar with certain patterns in your coworker’s behavior. In other words, you’ve become familiar with their leadership style. I want you to keep that person in mind and I’m gonna describe for you, in a few minutes here, four leadership styles.
And you’ll be able to tell, based on how you answered this question, what that coworkers leadership style is. But what is leadership style? What are we talking about when we talk about leadership style? Well, first of all it’s how people, ourselves included, act when we can do things our own way, the way that’s most natural and comfortable to us. I always like to use the analogy, it’s like wearing a pair of really comfortable shoes, the slippers that you put on when you walk in the door at the end of a long day or your sneakers that you’re in when you’re exercising or when you’re doing your errands.
It’s that natural feeling that certain things have as opposed to those dress shoes that you have to wear occasionally but you really wish you didn’t have to. Our style is the way that we act when we can do things our own way and when we’re most natural and most comfortable. It’s also behavior that’s so consistent that it’s predictable. You were just able to predict with, I am certain, some fairly good accuracy the behavior of a coworker based on that situation that I gave you. Their leadership style is so consistent that it is predictable.
And it’s also a behavior that seems to be a typical part of personality or we start to expect it most of the time. Now, again, that doesn’t mean that we don’t have to flex our leadership style or we don’t have to adjust it to the situation but we do have a style that is most natural and most comfortable to us. Leadership style, then, is our unique way of influencing others to work towards common goals. And there are many benefits to understanding our leadership style. First of all, it really does improve our interaction with other people because it helps them to interpret our behavior.
And, again, it doesn’t mean that we’re putting people into boxes and we’re not letting them behave in any other way but it does mean that it improves our interaction because people come to know what to expect of us and come to know how to work with us. It definitely improves our interaction by helping other people interpret our behavior. It actually influences our success by helping us to adapt to the leadership style of different people and to the leadership style that’s required in different situations.
I personally think there’s tremendous benefit to understanding our leadership style and that’s really what today’s Webinar is about. It’s about getting some insight into our own leadership style. My question to you then is what’s your leadership style? I wonder if you know. My guess is you probably do. And I’m gonna talk through some leadership styles and I’m gonna have you actually make a quick self-assessment of what you think your leadership style is. Now, first of all, we all have two dimensions to our style.
First of all, we have expressiveness. Expressiveness is the effort that a person makes to control his or her emotions when relating to other people. People who are expressive display their emotions and they tend to be very versatile, very sociable, very demonstrative. And people who are less expressive tend to control their emotions and other people would probably describe someone with a low level of expressiveness as being a private person there. They’re very focused and very independent. Another dimension of our style is our assertiveness.
Assertiveness is the effort that we make to influence or to control the thoughts and actions of other people. And that sounds like manipulation but it’s really not. Assertiveness, there is nothing wrong with being assertive. There is something wrong with being aggressive but there’s nothing wrong with being assertive. People who are assertive tell other people how things should be and they tend to be very task-oriented, very active and very confident. And then people who are less assertive ask other people how things should be and tend to be more process-oriented and a little more deliberative and very often more attentive.
And this is just how we are. We all have a level of assertiveness that comes naturally to us and we all have a level of expressiveness that comes naturally to us. One high or low of either dimension is not bad. There’s no right or wrong to what are our level of expressiveness and assertiveness is, it’s just who we are. And, again, it is about adapting to the situation and the type of leadership that is required. This is the HRDQ style model. And if you look around the edges, you see those two measures, expressiveness and assertiveness.
The two styles in the left half of the diagram, direct and systematic, are lower in expressiveness and the two styles on the right hand side, spirited and considerate, are higher in expressiveness. The lower half of the diagram represents the two styles, systematic and considerate, that are lower in assertiveness. And then the top measures or the top path of the model represents the two styles, direct and spirited, that have a higher level of assertiveness.
Let’s look at the strengths of all these four styles because maybe right now, unless you’re familiar with this model, it’s like, “Okay, I’m not sure exactly which one I am.” Maybe you can make some distinction about your level of assertiveness and expressiveness but you’re not quite sure where that fits. Let me talk about the strengths of all these four styles. First of all, let’s look at the direct style. And, again, the direct style is one that is high in assertiveness and low in expressiveness. People who are direct, who have a direct leadership style, typically like to compete.
Their competitiveness might actually give the organization or the project that they’re leading an edge over others. Direct leaders like quick results, they don’t necessarily wanna sit around and talk about it forever. They like quick results. Direct leaders tend to be very energetic. They like to get people moving. They like to get projects moving. They like to make decisions and they take charge no matter how challenging the situation. You can be in a group of total strangers and something needs to be done and very often it will be the person with a direct leadership style who’s the one that will take charge of the situation.
Spirited leaders are folks that have a high level of assertiveness and a high level of expressiveness. And spirited leaders are big picture thinkers, the vision oriented person who’s really, really good as the style name implies. They’re very good at generating enthusiasm. They’re very motivational. They tend to help other people, think about some fresh new approaches to what we’re doing, very spontaneous. Spirited leaders typically are the ones who create a fun atmosphere and they’re able to rally support.
They’re able to get people to support ideas and decisions and whatever the group has decided upon or is trying to decide upon. And then we have our considerate leaders. And considerate leaders are high in expressiveness but low in assertiveness. Considerate leaders typically are the ones who provide other people with reassurance, especially during difficult or challenging situations. They build loyalty by demonstrating support for other people. That’s what a considerate leader does and they really recognize the importance of taking other people’s views and feelings into account.
They will do things … Like before they make a decision, they will get other people’s ideas and suggestions and see how other people feel about the decision that they’re getting ready to make. And then, finally, we have our systematic leaders, the people who are low in assertiveness and also low and expressiveness. The strength of a systematic leader is that they are really outstanding and providing the structure that is so needed in order to keep projects or tasks on track and moving forward.
Systematic leaders make sure that nothing is left undone, that no important detail has not been considered or studied or whatever. The systematic leader makes sure that every stone has been looked under. They tend to be very analytical, very data-driven people, and they make their decisions based on facts. They have a strong orientation towards objectivity. Also, precision and accuracy is what the systematic leader is looking for. Those are the strengths of the four styles and now I’m gonna ask you to make a time to reveal.
From my descriptions, what do you think your predominant style is? Are you, A, direct, are you, B, spirited, are you, C, systematic or are you, D, considerate? Take a minute and think about that. Make sure you hit submit
Sara Lindmont: We’re getting really good participation and I can see those numbers jumping all over.
Peggy Greenberg: Good. People are thinking about what’s their style and what’s their leadership style?
Sara Lindmont: Okay, I think we have everyone.
Peggy Greenberg: All right, great. Okay.
Sara Lindmont: We have here … We have 20% for direct, 21% for spirited. Systematic is 25% and considerate is 35%.
Peggy Greenberg: All right. Okay, so the majority of you fall into the considerate category. I don’t know what all of your job roles are or your industries that you work in but very often different industries tend to attract leaders of different styles. Not that that’s the style that they always demonstrate no matter what the situation or what the issue is but just because that’s, again, their natural style. And so, very often, people that are in human services, health care or that kind of thing will fall into the considerate leadership style.
And then it looks like the next one is systematic. Maybe some of you are from the tech industry or that’s the kind of role that you have and so what sounds most predominant for you is that systematic style. Again, we’re able to listen to descriptions of those and to make an assessment of what our individual style is. Now in addition the strengths that I was just talking about, each style has a flip side of those traits and these are what are known as are our bind spots. They can occur if our strengths are carried to extremes. Okay?
If I’m direct and I’m a quick decision maker but I carry that to extreme and I never consult anybody else and I never think about is this a situation where we have to slow down a little bit so that we can make sure that we get everybody on board, then, that’s a blind spot for me. It’s a strength but when it’s not appropriate to the situation or to the people that I’m leading, then, it becomes a blind spot for me. It’s good to be aware of our blind spots to help balance our strengths.
And as I review the trouble spots of the four styles, I want you to think about what trouble spots might be there for you and, more importantly, what can you do to limit those trouble spots. Let’s talk a little bit about the trouble spots of the four styles and I’ll start again with the direct leadership style. And, again, remember the direct leader has a sense of urgency and many times a reluctance to delegate. Some trouble spots for direct leaders might be that sometimes a direct leader will cross the line and actually become overbearing in their quest to get it done and get it done now.
Their competitive spirit may intimidate people that they’re trying to lead because some people are not competitive. And so that competitive spirit might be intimidating to other people. Direct people work hard and they expect that same kind of super eight performance from everyone that they lead and that can cause other people to burn out. Those are some trouble spots for a direct leader. A spirited leader, with their emphasis on thinking of new ways to do things, can sometimes mean that things don’t get carried through to completion.
And sometimes the persuasiveness of a spirited leadership style can feel like manipulation to other people. A spirited leader might focus so much on idea generation that they never get to a decision or it seems as though they don’t get to a decision. And so they can appear to lose sight of the long term goals. The considerate leader is very much about harmony. And as a result of that, a considerate leader might avoid conflict. And as we know, conflict is not all destructive. Conflict can be very constructive.
And so a considerate leader’s desire to keep everyone happy and maintain the status quo can mean that they are missing opportunities. And, again, they’re missing opportunities to give rise to constructive conflict that might result in a better product or a better service. And sometimes their desire to keep it all comfortable might mean that they are reluctant to change. And so their willingness to accommodate other people’s views can cause them to sometimes give in on issues that really are important to the decision or the project or the process or whatever is under consideration.
And then, finally, the systematic leader who wants structure and wants data and wants analytics might feel to other people like we’re just bogged down in numbers and we’re not getting anywhere and we’re still not making the decision. And sometimes when … Some situations are urgent and the systematic leader and their thoroughness and their desire to dot every I and cross every T, again, might mean a missed opportunity so, very definitely, a trouble spot for the systematic leader. Again, what are your trouble spots and what can you do to mitigate those trouble spots?
If you know your style or you have a sense of what your style is, what can you do to mitigate those trouble spots because everyone has them and we just have to recognize what they are, recognize the situation and figure out how can we flex our style in order to meet that situation. Another question is what about the leadership styles of other people in your office? And the reality is that your boss and your work colleagues very often, probably, will have a leadership style that’s different from your own.
How do we work with people who have different leadership styles? Because we’ve got to do it, we can’t live in a world where everyone’s style is exactly as our own nor do I think we would want to necessarily. The strongest differences in style will be if you have a style that is diametrically opposed to your boss or your colleagues or your colleagues when you have to work with. For instance, there’s nothing that’s gonna drive a direct leadership style more crazy than a considerate leadership style who wants to take the time to hear everyone’s opinions, get everyone’s ideas, make sure that everyone is totally tied in before we move forward.
That will drive a direct leader crazy. Likewise, a considerate leader might be overwhelmed by a direct leaders pace and their forcefulness as they’re speaking or as they’re laying out where we’re going or what we’re going to do. And in similar fashion, there’s hardly anything that drives a systematic leader more crazy than having a spirited leader who wants to, “Let’s brainstorm some more vague ideas or some generalities without giving any specific details of that.” And, conversely, the spirited leader might feel constricted by the systematic leader who wants to tie down or limit creative ideas to facts or research or data points.
Diametrically opposing styles are where we have the most difficulty. Let’s do another poll based on what I just talked about. What is your leader’s style, whoever that person might be … your manager, your executive leader, whoever? Is it the same as yours? Is it a different style but it’s next to yours, meaning it’s not diametrically opposed? Or is it a style that’s diametrically opposite of yours? viewers. Which of those three is it? Make sure you hit submit.
Sara Lindmont: Okay. Oh, we still have some more participation.
Peggy Greenberg: Great. Hopefully everyone can make that assessment.
Sara Lindmont: Okay, it looks like we’ve captured everybody.
Peggy Greenberg: Great.
Sara Lindmont: 15% says the same as yours, 53% says different style but next to yours and then 32% is diametrically opposite.
Peggy Greenberg: Okay. All right, so those 16% who have the same style are the lucky ones because there’s really no style flexing that necessarily needs to go on. Though I would caution you again that, maybe, both you and your leader need to think about, again, what’s the situation and what’s the style of the people that we’re trying to influence. The 53% that have a different style but it’s a style that’s next to yours really just need to think about your ability to adjust to that slightly different style. But you kinda share a same general space, if you will, with a style that’s different but it’s next door to yours.
And 32% of you really have your work cut out for you because you have someone who is directly opposite of you. Again, you need to think about what’s that person’s style, how can I best communicate with them, how can I best be led by someone style? How can I, maybe, help them to recognize that a different style isn’t bad and maybe they should flex their style a little bit in order to be more effective? It’s important information to have and I’m not telling you this because I know many times people feel like these kinds of things put people into a box that they can’t get out of.
That’s not why we try to increase our understanding about different approaches. We increase our understanding about different approaches so that we can really be in the moment and we can really think about, is this effective for me, am I being upfront about what my needs are; and am I giving this person some honest feedback that can really help them for them to learn how to flex their leadership style as well. A good way to remember leadership styles is to think about how do the four styles get to be.
And this was an analogy that was presented to me years ago and one that I’ve always kept in mind because it just seems to capture the experience of the four styles and the fact that we need all four styles. I want everyone to imagine, if you will, for just a moment. I want you to think about that you’re in a very large room, an auditorium or something like that … a large open space. You’re in a large open space and I want you to imagine that you were standing at A. Okay, we’ll call your position where you start A and you need to get to B which is on the other side of the room and there are other people around.
You’re at A and you need to get to B. Well, if you’re direct and you’re at A and you need to get to B what you’re gonna do is you’re just gonna go, all right. You’re not gonna look to your left, you’re not gonna look to your white. You’re not gonna ask any questions. If you’re at A and you need to get to B, you just do it. You just go there. If you’re a spirited and you’re at A and you need to get to B, you’re probably gonna let everybody that’s around you know that you’re going to B. And you’re probably gonna try generate some excitement about going to B and what’s at B … what’s on that other side of the room?
If you’re systematic and you’re at A and you need to get to B, you’ll probably really kinda stand there for a little bit of time and try to figure out, “How far is B? I wonder. How many steps is it gonna take me?” If you’re systematic, you might actually start to walk to B and then you kinda come back and check again and make sure that is it really B that we’re supposed to go to. And, finally, if you’re considerate and you’re at A and you need to get to B, you’re probably going to ask other people if they’d like to go to B with you or does anyone need help getting to be. Or, “I’m thinking about going to B, what do you think? What do you think about that?”
The moral of the story is all four styles get to B. We go there in slightly different ways but we all get to B. It’s an important thing to think about when we think about leadership style. Again, we need all four styles but we all get to B in a slightly different way. Sometimes we have to flex our style and it helps to know how to adapt or flex your style. And just like gradually improving your trouble spots, it really does take thought, I think, and effort. You have to think outside of your comfort zone in order to recognize that this situation or the people that I’m leading really require something different than what’s most natural and comfortable for me.
And the payoff can be that it really can make a difference between a successful productive interaction or an unsuccessful or unproductive interaction. Practice makes perfect when it comes to style flexing. There are times and situations where styles are effective and there are times and situations where they’re less effective. Let me talk a little bit about that, when are things effective and when are things less effective. For example, a direct style is very effective when you need that quick decision making and you need that rapid fire.
It’s least effective in situations where you need more careful planning or you need to involve other people or situations that really do require a lot of sensitivity to other people’s feelings, for example. A spirited style is most effective when you need people to be motivated, to really develop some out of the box thinking. And it’s least effective in urgent situations when you just have to meet a deadline, you don’t have time to think outside the box, you need to stay inside the box.
A systematic style is most effective when you do need long-term planning, you need careful data collection, you need accuracy, you need objectivity or a very objective analysis of a situation. And it’s least effective when you need quick decision making or you need flexibility to say, “Well, maybe that’s what the data is telling us but here’s what the reality is.” So, it’s least effective in those kinds of situation, the systematic style.
The considerate style is most effective in sensitive situations or in situations that really do require a lot of tact, a lot of diplomacy, a lot of patients and probably least effective in situations that require quick adjustments or the ability to adjust to unforeseen circumstances or situations. That’s when it would be most effective so, again, flexing your leadership style. All right. Sara, can you move to the next slide for me please? Sara?
Sara Lindmont: Yeah, there you go. You’re there.
Peggy Greenberg: Okay. All right. It’s about recognizing too other people’s dominant style and being able to interact with someone and recognize their style is critically important as well. Look at how people communicate and look at how they work and those are the ways that we can really tell what someone else’s style is. It’s by looking at their communication and their work style. For example, a direct leadership style is someone who’s very candid and freely shares in their communication. It doesn’t take much to get to know them or to get some ideas out of them.
Their work style is that they’re quick and they move from one thing to the next with a kind of fluidity. Their work style might also be a certain level of impatience with other people. The spirited style, their communication, very easy to pick up on, very outgoing, a storyteller. And someone who prefers group decision making is usually systematic. They tend to be very persuasive and their work style is that they multitask. They sometimes miss deadlines and that can drive other people crazy. But you can pick out that work style of the spirited leader.
The considerate style, their communication is that they’re great listeners. They’re very easy to talk to. They work to build trust with other people, tend to be very patient, value those warm personal relationships. And their work style is that they’re very collaborative and they’re always asking other people about how they feel about something or what their response is to a certain situation. Considerate leaders are happy to take on less high profile task. You might also notice that the work style of a considerate leader is that they don’t like change very much or they tend to resist change slightly.
And then, finally, the systematic leader’s communication is very matter of fact, very analytical and they tend to be more comfortable talking about facts than feelings. Their work style is they meet the deadlines and they’re very well organized. I always say you can tell the work style of someone who is systematic just by walking into their workspace and looking around because it will be very well organized and it will be easy to pick up on the fact that they have a systematic leadership style. Next slide Sara.
Sara Lindmont: Do you see it on there?
Peggy Greenberg: I don’t. I don’t but that’s okay. I have it in front of me.
Sara Lindmont: Great.
Peggy Greenberg: Okay, we’re good. We’re good. I want everybody to keep in mind some things and my reminders to you that your dominant style is the one that feels most comfortable or most natural to you. That’s your dominant style, okay? And there’s no right style. There’s no right or wrong when it comes to style. It really does help to know what your trouble spots are because when we know our trouble spots, then, we’re able to accommodate for them and to recognize the fact that this is a trouble spot for me and this is something I need to be aware of.
And remember too that all of us have the ability to flex our style to accommodate to other people and to accommodate to certain situations. We all have the ability to do that. That’s not limited to only certain people can flex their style. Everybody has the ability to flex their style and flexing your style is what will lead you to success when it comes to leadership, when you’re able to figure out what does this situation require, what do the people require, what does the project require and how can I flex my style in order to really meet those challenges.
And remember too that we all get to point B, it’s just a matter of how we get there. And we’re gonna go in slightly different ways but we’re all going to get to B. I think that is something that can really help all of us as we lead and as we work with other people. Next slide Sara.
Sara Lindmont: There you go.
Peggy Greenberg: And, finally, effective leaders create a match between their style and the situation. And, again, that’s what we know for certain. It’s that effective leaders create that match between their style and the situation so we never stay rigidly parked in one leadership style. We all have the capability to travel around depending on the situation. And the most effective leaders of all time are the ones who are able to recognize what the situations require and what can I do in order to be most effective right now in this situation.
I hope we have given you some additional ideas, first of all, about what your leadership style is and about ways that you can both flex your style and recognize what the situation is and how to flex your style to be most effective. I’m gonna turn this back over to Sara for a few additional comments. Sara.
Sara Lindmont: Thank you so much Peggy. That was great. For those that are new HRDQ, I just wanna introduce us. We publish research-based experiential products that you can deliver in your organization so definitely check us out online. We’ve got print and online self-assessments like the What’s My Leadership Style which was the foundation of today’s Webinar. We also have up-out-of-your-seat games and reproducible workshops that you can customize. Check out our website, reach out to our customer service team, they know our products really well.
And if you find that you may need some help either learning a training program or you would like one of our expert trainers, like Peggy, to deliver it for you we also provide those services. That is all the time we have for today. Thank you again, Peggy. It is always a joy listening to your depth of knowledge.
Peggy Greenberg: Thank you Sara. Thanks everyone.