February 9, 2013
In search of what situational leadership style would fit me better, I completed the Situational Leadership Style Self-Assessment provided on line and adapted from Hersey and Blanchard. This paper will assess the results of this self-assessment and study its application on a given case study. In the process, I will be discussing if I agree or not with the results and I will be identifying my preferred situational leadership style. In the end, I will be providing the cons and pros in using situational leadership and how they will affect my personal leadership style.
Why analyzing and go through all the aforementioned items? Simply, because a leader should be able to understand herself, the strengths and the weaknesses; it will help in building on the later and work on improving the former. Hence, knowing my situational leadership style will provide me with the know-how adapting tools to my employees’ needs and their level of competence in performing a particular assignment. It diagnoses their readiness, their commitment and their willingness to complete the assigned task. It is a balance between direction and building relationships; as a leader, I should be able to communicate clearly and to be flexible enough to adapt quickly to different settings, people, and challenges. Summary of Self-Assessment
The Situational Leadership is presented in four quadrants, however, one can move in her leadership style endlessly from one quadrant to another: horizontally, vertically or diagonally. My results shows, according to six of my answers, strength in the S2 quadrant– selling/coaching, then I swung toward S3 – participating/facilitating as my four answers out of twelve rested on it. Finally, I had two answers that took me to the S1 square- telling/directing.
Based on the portrayals given to S1, S2, S3 and S4, a leader has to unceasingly keep the balance between being task oriented and building relationship. At times, she can be very supportive and at others she needs to use her authority to redirect the group’s focus especially in the presence of dramatic drop. It is a very challenging task which asks for high level of agility, honesty and openness from the leader. That would lead me to believe that my results made a perfect sense. However, I find myself tilting more toward the S2 quadrant as I am the type of a person who believes profoundly in communicating the challenges along with the envisioned changes, and believes in empowering my group members. There will be times, especially in the small private schools where teachers’ retention is a major challenge, I mentor closely knowing that the new teacher knows what she needs to do in terms of teaching and managing her classroom but she might be lacking the confidence and the experience. My job is to work on enhancing her competence and recognize her effort and initiatives. After, I would step away a little and keep on praising and supporting with less directing to increase her motivational level. That explains, therefore, my parking spot in the S3 zone. As for my passing by the S1 sector, it could be that in rare cases when I fall under the deadline and lack of resources pressure, I change to a military person who pushes for results at the expense of the human relationships. Applying Leadership Style
Implementing change is not a simple move; the leader should involve all stake holders and literally sell them the “why” and the “how”. In the case study, the students’ performance is not regressing; the students are actually failing their core course. The course of changes proposed in the study is: a) new textbooks, b) bench mark assessments, c) new requirements for classroom participation. Knowing, from the Situational Self-Assessment’s score, that I swing between S2 and S3 but mainly I tend to be an S2 leader, my leadership style will come in handy for this...