Essay: The Importance of Situational Leadership

Situational Leadership

The Situational Leadership approach is one of the most renowned leadership approaches proposed by Blanchard and Hersey in 1969. It has been used mainly in organizational leadership training and development. Situations are mostly focused on this leadership approach.

Understanding Situational Leadership

At its core, Situational Leadership is built on the premise that effective leadership is not one-size-fits-all. Instead, it emphasizes the need for leaders to assess and respond to the specific needs of their followers or team members in any given situation.

Developed by Paul Hersey and Ken Blanchard in the 1970s, this leadership model proposes that leadership effectiveness is contingent upon the leader’s ability to adjust their style based on the readiness or maturity level of their followers.

Different Types of Situations

The situational leadership approach’s main basis is that different situations require different types of leadership. The main criteria of the approach are adapting to the situation’s demands and using leadership skills accordingly. The approach requires the leader to comprise both supportive and directive dimensions.

Supportive Behavior

Supportive and directive dimensions refer to supportive and directive behaviors. Helping the group members get comfortable with the situation, their colleagues, and themselves is called supportive behavior.

Directive Behavior

Directive behavior is the one-way communication between the leader and the followers. Some examples of supportive behaviors are listening and considering followers’ feedback, sharing information with them, and encouraging and motivating them. Followers must be evaluated by the situational leader and their commitment to acquiring the organizational objectives.

In addition, changing capabilities must be present within the leader so that he can change according to the followers’ needs and the requirements of the situation.

Effective Situational Leaders

Effective situational leaders know well about the needs of their followers and can adapt to a style that best meets those needs. Besides this, there are certain styles in the situational leadership approach, i.e., directing style and coaching style.