by Shawn Stratton | Follow Him on Twitter Here
When it comes to working within a leadership team, knowing the leadership styles of those with whom you work increases your chances for success. A team may have one ultimate designated leader but in any effective leadership team there are times when everyone takes on leadership positions, typically based on expertise and experience.
These team leaders are usually responsible for divisions or aspects of the organization but work together to make high-level decisions, such as those required by a management team.
Be A More Effective Leadership Team
A leadership style is the manner in which a person guides, or directs, his or her team. A quick Google image search will return thousands of diagrams of leadership style and assessments. If you are unsure of your own natural leadership style, it is beneficial to both you and your team to choose an assessment from a reputable source and complete it together.
Understanding your management teams leadership styles will explain so much. Knowing your own and your teammates’ leadership styles will help you work better together, making decisions, sharing responsibilities, and presenting a unified front to the organization. This knowledge can save an organization time and money, as teammates work more effectively and efficiently when they are matched with those whose styles complement their own. Another advantage to understanding the leadership styles of your team is that it helps avoid those frustrations or conflicts, which stem from either failure to communicate or misunderstandings. When you know that a particular teammate is naturally an analytical leader and likes first to gather a large amount of information, you know that they need more time than a teammate who is comfortable making quick decisions with less information. Sharing your own dominant leadership style, then, helps your teammates understand how they can best work with you and how they can help you strengthen and expand your own leadership abilities. Most leaders have the skills to lead from a different style when absolutely necessary, such as in crises, but the strongest leaders are those who can lead from all styles effectively, as needed.
Knowing the leadership styles of other teammates engenders respect for differences in styles rather a desire for homogeneity. There are no right or wrong leadership styles; all are needed on a team, and leaders should confidently lead from their own natural leadership strengths.
Do you know your teammates’ dominant leadership styles? How has know a teammates or supervisors leadership style helped you? Share in the comments
Shawn has a Masters in Leadership and devoted 15 years to leading wilderness leadership expeditions as a senior instructor with the National Outdoors Leadership School and other international organizations. His skill for fostering powerful teams has made him an international speaker, workshop leader, business consultant, and author of bestseller TEAMS ON THE EDGE: Stories and Lessons from Wilderness Expedition. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, or Google Plus.