Situational Leadership
AGED 3153
Leaders don't force people to follow
-they invite them on a journey.
~ Charles S. Lauer
Overview
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Situational approach perspective
Leadership styles
Developmental levels
How does the situational approach work?
Situational Approach Perspective
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Hersey & Blanchard– 1969
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Reddins 3-D management style theory
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Leader-focused
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Different situations require different
leadership
Situational Approach
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What are the two dimensions?
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Effective leaders
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recognize what employees need
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assess competence and commitment
skills and motivation vary over time
adapt their own style to meet those needs
Situational Approach
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Blanchard & Blanchard et al.—1985
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Situational Leadership II (SLII) Model
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Two parts
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Leadership style
Development level
Leadership
Styles
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Behavior pattern of an
individual who
attempts to influence
others.
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Developmental
Levels
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Degree to which sub.
have the competence &
commitment to
accomplish a given
task/activity.
S1, S2, S3, S4
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S3
D1, D2, D3, D4
S2
D4
S4
S1
D3
D2
D1
The Four Leadership Styles
Supportive Behavior
High
High Supportive
Low Directive
High Directive
High Supportive
Low Supportive
Low Directive
High Directive
Low Supportive
Low
Directive Behavior
D4
High
D3
D2
Moderate
High
D1
Low
S1– Directive Style
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S1
Directing
High Directive
Low Supportive
Leader:
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Focuses communication on
goal achievement
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Spends less time using
supportive behaviors
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Goal achievement instructions
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what and how
close supervision
S2– Coaching Style
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Leader:
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S2
Coaching
High Directive
High Supportive
focuses communication on:
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goal achievement
supporting subordinates’
socioemotional needs
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involvement through
encouragement and
soliciting subordinate input
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still makes final decision
S3– Supporting Style
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S3
Supporting
Leader:
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does not focus solely on goals
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uses supportive behaviors to
bring out follower’s skills
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High Supportive
Low Directive
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listening
praising
asking for input
providing feedback
delegates day-to-day decisionmaking control
S4– Delegating Style
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S4
Delegating
Leader:
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offers less task input and
social support
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Lessens involvement in:
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Low Supportive
Low Directive
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planning
control of details
goal clarification
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Gives subordinates control
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Refrains from intervention and
unneeded social support
Developmental Levels
D1
Competence
Commitment
Low
High
D2
Competence
Commitment
Some
Low
D3
Competence
Commitment
Mod./ high
Low
D4
Competence
Commitment
High
High
Indicators
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Experience
Related skills
Intelligent & can think
through problems
Can find & use
resources
Self-directed
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Interest in activity
Volunteers for the
activity
Discussion with
others
Positive attitude
toward group
Follows through
Situational Leadership
Continued
AGED 3153
Treat people as if they were what they
ought to be and you help them to become
what they are capable of being.
~Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
How does the situational
approach work?
Focus
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Followers move forward and backward
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Effective leaders
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Along the developmental continuum
diagnose where subordinates are on the
developmental continuum
adapt his/her leadership style to the prescribed
style
Leaders must be flexible in their leadership
behavior
Situation Evaluation Questions
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What is the task that subordinates are being
asked to perform?
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How complicated is the task?
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Are the subordinates sufficiently skilled to
accomplish the task?
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Do they have the desire to complete the job
once they start?
What are some situational
leadership strengths?
What are some criticisms of
the situational approach?
How could you apply the
situational approach?
Application
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Useful in consulting
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applicable to everyone
during all project stages
in any type of organization