Leadership in the Classroom

A classroom is a group of learners. Generally speaking, learning groups have at least two basic objectives: 1. to complete learning tasks; 2. to maintain positive and effective relationships among group members. Leadership consists of actions that help the group to complete its tasks successfully and maintain effective working relationships among its members. For any group to be successful, both task-leadership actions and group maintenance-leadership actions have to be provided. It is important to note that a) any member of a group may become a leader by taking these necessary actions (i.e., the teacher is not necessarily the leader), and b) the various leadership actions may be provided by different group members (i.e., the teacher may decide to share various aspects of leadership with class members). Teachers should know that, generally, groups function most effectively when leadership tasks are shared among group members. However, most students are accustomed to being in classes where the teacher plays all of the leadership roles; if you want students to play some of these roles, you must give them permission to do so, and perhaps guidance in how to best take on these roles. When teachers neglect leadership and do not provide leadership themselves or invite students to take on leadership roles, students may themselves elect to play informal (and frequently inappropriate) leadership roles in the classroom, simply to pull the individuals together as a group. Leadership is a set of skills that anyone can acquire. Responsible leadership depends upon a. flexible behavior; b. the ability to diagnose what behaviors are needed at a particular time in order for the group to function most efficiently; and c. the ability to fulfill these behaviors or to get other members to fulfill them. To participate effectively in a group, especially in a leadership role, one must be able to: 1. Communicate Communication is the first step in cooperating with others. There are two basic categories of skills -- sending and receiving. Some essential skills are the ability to:
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Clearly and unambiguously communicate ideas and feelings. Make messages complete and specific. Make verbal and nonverbal messages congruent with each other. Ask for feedback concerning the way in which your messages are received. Display openness, and maintain eye contact. Listen without response until the other person has sent a full message.

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Paraphrase accurately and nonevaluatively the essence of the sender's message. Listen beyond words -- that is to be aware of nonverbal messages and behavior. Listen for requests and intentions in others' messages, particularly in complaints.

These skills are ones well known to teachers as important classroom skills. They are skills needed by any leader, in any situation. 2. Build and Maintain Trust Acceptance and support are essential in building and maintaining trust. Acceptance is communicating to others that you have high regard for them. Support is communicating to others that you recognize their strengths and believe they are capable of productively managing their situation. Underlying all significant learning is the element of trust. Stephen Brookfield (1990) proposes that those playing the role of teacher in a learning group must pay attention to the balance between two important characteristics that make teachers more trustworthy in students' eyes: credibility and authenticity. 3. Manage Conflict Since participation in a group will inevitably produce some conflicts, it is essential that members of learning groups have the skills required for managing controversies constructively, including the ability to:
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Understand the point-of-view of another person in the group. Approach controversy from a problem-solving perspective. First, explore all differences. Then, look for ways to integrate ideas. Recognize the legitimacy of different ideas and viewpoints and search for a solution that accomodates the needs of all group members. Be critical of ideas, not persons. When large societal problems are being played out in the classroom, keep returning to the course "text' whenever possible--how can it help members of the learning group make sense of the conflict they are experiencing?

References: Johnson, D.W. & Johnson, R.T. (1991). Learning together and alone. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall. Brookfield, S. (1990). The skillful teacher. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.  Prepared by: Susan Wilcox, Instructional Development Centre, Queen's University

These might include Web sites. books. or other resources to use with students. the science teachers examine a number of lab reports together and identify strengths and weaknesses. This help might include ideas for differentiating instruction or planning lessons in partnership with fellow teachers. Teacher leaders assume a wide range of roles to support school and student success. Instructional specialists might study research-based classroom strategies (Marzano. Whether these roles are assigned formally or shared informally. The English teachers share strategies they use in their classes to improve students' writing. 3. With two English teachers serving as instructional specialists. Instructional Specialist An instructional specialist helps colleagues implement effective teaching strategies. set up her classroom. explore which instructional methodologies are appropriate for the school.Ten Roles for Teacher Leaders Cindy Harrison and Joellen Killion The ways teachers can lead are as varied as teachers themselves. and how to use the curriculum in planning instruction and assessment is essential to ensuring consistent curriculum implementation throughout a school. They might also share such professional resources as articles. many teachers can serve as leaders among their peers. 2. Tracy. Tracy suggests that the team develop a common understanding of the standards and agrees to facilitate the development and analysis of common quarterly assessments. 1. Tinisha becomes a resource provider when she offers to help Carissa. instructional materials. Using standards in English and social studies as their guides. Tinisha gives Carissa extra copies of a number line for her students to use. follow the adopted curriculum. the world studies team leader. a new staff member in her second career. and develop shared assessments. and the grade-level language arts pacing guide. the team members agree to increase the consistency in their classroom curriculums and administer common assessments. & Pollock. Because teachers can lead in a variety of ways. and share findings with colleagues. they build the entire school's capacity to improve. Jamal suggests that they invite several English teachers to recommend strategies for writing instruction. readings. use common pacing charts. signs to post on the wall that explain to students how to get help when the teacher is busy. Curriculum specialists lead teachers to agree on standards. works with the five language arts and five social studies teachers in her school. and assessment tools. 2001). So what are some of the leadership options available to teachers? The following 10 roles are a sampling of the many ways teachers can contribute to their schools' success. . how various components of the curriculum link together. When his fellow science teachers share their frustration with students' poorly written lab reports. lesson or unit plans. Pickering. Curriculum Specialist Understanding content standards. Resource Provider Teachers help their colleagues by sharing instructional resources.

and politics. 22) Marcia asks Yolanda for classroom support in implementing nonlinguistic representation strategies. acting as a grade-level or department chair. such as a school improvement team. 2001). and the other for coteaching the lesson to Marcia's students and discussing it afterward. (p. Together. Learning Facilitator Facilitating professional learning opportunities among staff members is another role for teacher leaders. school. Frank facilitates the school's professional development committee and serves as the committee's language arts representative. manipulatives. often by demonstrating a lesson. The principal asks her to mentor her new teammate. Yolanda agrees to plan and teach a lesson with Marcia that integrates several relevant strategies. and aligned to fill gaps in student learning. Such communities of learning can break the norms of isolation present in many schools. supporting school initiatives. They ask the principal for two half-days of professional release time. and advise new teachers about instruction. curriculum. Mentors serve as role models. School Leader Being a school leader means serving on a committee. or representing the school on community or district task forces or . The committee can then develop and implement a professional development plan on the basis of their findings. one for learning more about the strategy and planning a lesson together. and it also encouraged a bias for action (improvement through collaboration) on the part of teachers. Blase and Blase (2006) found that consultation with peers enhanced teachers' self-efficacy (teachers' belief in their own abilities and capacity to successfully solve teaching and learning problems) as they reflected on practice and grew together. coteaching. 5. 6. a brand-new teacher and a recent immigrant from the Philippines.4. and types of learning opportunities that different groups of teachers need. Ming prepares by participating in the district's three-day training on mentoring. 2001). Ming is a successful teacher in her own 1st grade classroom.. When teachers learn with and from one another. such as graphic organizers. Being a mentor takes a great deal of time and expertise and makes a significant contribution to the development of a new professional. and kinesthetic activities (Marzano et al. 7. but she has not assumed a leadership role in the school. This model begins with identifying student learning needs. teachers' current level of knowledge and skills in the target areas. and classroom. they can focus on what most directly improves student learning. focused on teachers' classroom work. teachers plan the year's professional development program using a backmapping model (Killion. Classroom Supporter Classroom supporters work inside classrooms to help teachers implement new ideas. practices. Mentor Serving as a mentor for novice teachers is a common role for teacher leaders. or observing and giving feedback. acclimate new teachers to a new school. Their professional learning becomes more relevant. Her role as a mentor will not only include helping her teammate negotiate the district. procedure. but will also include acclimating her colleague to the community. Ming feels proud as she watches her teammate develop into an accomplished teacher.

A school leader shares the vision of the school. Teacher leaders can lead conversations that engage their peers in analyzing and using this information to strengthen instruction. Learners model continual improvement. and use what they learn to help all students achieve. Teachers who take on the catalyst role feel secure in their own work and have a strong commitment to continual improvement. as individuals. is a voracious learner. offers to help the principal engage students in the school improvement planning process. Joshua. Manuela. They then plan instruction on the basis of this data. the 10th grade language arts team leader. Carol guides teachers as they discuss strengths and weaknesses of students' writing performance as a group. Joshua arranges a daylong meeting for 10 staff members and 10 students who represent various views of the school experience. Other teachers. aligns his or her professional goals with those of the school and district. When teachers begin to point fingers at students. visionaries who are “never content with the status quo but rather always looking for a better way” (Larner. they do not often use that data to drive classroom instruction. . by classrooms. In a faculty meeting. 10. Carol. Students who come to him for extra assistance have shared their perspectives. begin to talk about their teaching and how it influences student learning. he encourages them to examine how they can change their instructional practices to improve student engagement and achievement. facilitates a team of her colleagues as they look at the results of the most recent writing sample. Catalyst for Change Teacher leaders can also be catalysts for change. p. from nonattenders to grade-level presidents. the school's new bilingual teacher. Joshua works with the school improvement team facilitator to ensure that the activities planned for the meeting are appropriate for students so that students will actively participate. 8. she identifies something new that she is trying in her classroom. 32). gender. At every team or faculty meeting. demonstrate lifelong learning. Larry challenges them to explore data about the relationship between race and discipline referrals in the school.committees. Her willingness to explore new strategies is infectious. As his colleagues discuss reasons for low student achievement. Learner Among the most important roles teacher leaders assume is that of learner. Data Coach Although teachers have access to a great deal of data. Faculty and team meetings become a forum in which teachers learn from one another. and Larry wants teachers to know what students are saying. encouraged by her willingness to discuss what works and what doesn't. Manuela's commitment to and willingness to talk about learning break down barriers of isolation that existed among teachers. Larry expresses a concern that teachers may be treating some students differently from others. 9. and previous school. They pose questions to generate analysis of student learning. 2004. staff sponsor of the student council. and shares responsibility for the success of the school as a whole. The school improvement team plans to revise its nearly 10-year-old vision and wants to ensure that students' voices are included in the process. a teacher-designed assessment given to all incoming 10th grade students. and in disaggregated clusters by race.

Regardless of the roles they assume. Little. the master teacher's success in designing and implementing effective teaching/learning strategies can initiate professional growth activities leading to other roles. Some leadership roles are formal with designated responsibilities. 29). Both emerging roles (Liberman & Miller. ways. These roles are identified and described in varying degrees. creation of Professional Development Schools. The variety of roles ensures that teachers can find ways to lead that fit their talents and interests. and influence practice among their peers Effective educational change is dependent on the exercise of appropriate leadership roles. collective manner" (Howey. 2. Master teacher. Three areas described for teacher leadership are: self-improvement. and increased emphasis on site-based management require participation by teacher-leaders. A knowledge base enhanced by experience and interest in a curricular . Skills in communication. In the Association of Teacher Education Bulletin 37 (Andrew. Devaney. Possible leadership roles include but are not limited to: 1. the document focuses on the need to change teacher preparation programs. And. extending from the principal as an instructional leader to community leaders as reform advocates. In addition. and initiation of curricular change. this document addresses identical issues and describes similar qualities as those under consideration today.in schools . Curriculum specialist. In addition. however. 1990) and more traditional roles in teacher leadership provide increased opportunities for teacher leaders. The content-area teacher can fill a leadership role in the area of curriculum development. this document addresses identical issues and describes similar qualities as those under consideration today. the New Schools project. Leadership qualities are identified as: knowledge of change strategies. this topic is addressed as Teacher Leadership: A Model for Change. 1984). 1988. 1988. Teaching expertise provides a foundation for other leadership roles. 1974). The interest in teacher leadership is not new. sometimes overlapping. and skill in group process and decision making. change processes. Significantly. 1988. Liberman. Three areas described for teacher leadership are: self-improvement of others. p. Significantly. The expert teacher is sought out both by the inexperienced and the ineffective teacher. Leadership: A Model for Change.and who can address these in a continuing. Support for teacher leadership is based on a need for "highly competent leaders who reside where the problems primarily are . as expected. Other more informal roles emerge as teachers interact with their peers.Roles for All Teachers exhibit leadership in multiple. teacher leaders shape the culture of their schools. knowledge of curriculum alternatives and development process. interest has developed in identifying leadership roles for classroom teachers (Howey. and initiation of curricular change. and interpersonal relationships are essential in helping inexperienced and/or less effective teachers. improvement of others. improve student learning. 1987. The renewed interest in teacher leadership is strengthened by teacher education restructuring trends.

reviewing. caring. and school climate for the benefit of students. 3. the teacher needs to provide feedback to strengthen competencies and to address weaknesses.area make the teacher a valuable resource in designing.. Portsmouth. Most teachers are truly concerned about each student and need to understand how they can provide much needed leadership for addressing student needs. & Pollock. NH: Heinemann. curriculum. The content-area specialist (teacher) must be encourage to accept leadership roles in the area of expertise. Initial observations about student achievement." Increasing emphasis on internships and induction processes place additional importance on the classroom teacher's leadership role in the continuing professional development of novice teachers. Student advocate. . 5. (2001). and evaluating curriculum. What works in elementary schools: Results-based staff development. Researcher. D. job training. illness. Mentor. & Blase. REFERENCES Blase. and helping relationship. J. 4. Pathways: Charting a course for professional learning.. attendance. Oxford. This role provides . A traditional role of the classroom teacher has been to provide leadership in the professional development of the pre-service teacher. Moran (1992) identifies mentoring as the common element in the background of individuals who have risen to leadership positions. (2001). home life. J. Attempt to build collaborative activities between schools and institutions of higher education call for active leadership roles by classroom teachers in identifying issues and recommending changes in teacher education programs. participation. Alexandria. As a clinical supervisor. and needs come from classroom teachers.. Larner.. M. Marzano. Killion. OH: National Staff Development Council. R. (2004). Teachers bringing out the best in teachers: A guide to peer consultation for administrators and teachers. literacy. J.. Pickering.. VA: ASCD. Even though the counselor and other school personnel have been viewed in this role. trusted and experienced counselor who influences the career development of an associate in a warm. Dodgson (1986) defines mentor as ". Thousand Oaks. J. 6. The classroom teacher has the most contact and interaction with the student.. A major indicator of the significance of this role was the adoption of "Education and Human Resources: Putting the Pieces Together" as the theme for the 74th (1994) ATE Annual Meeting. teachers can exercise leadership roles in also addressing issues related to parenting. This role has focused on serving as a model in demonstrating skills and dispositions. and the dysfunctional family. Teacher educator. CA: Corwin Press. the classroom teacher has an even more significant role in developing leadership skills that will address issues relating to improving instructional processes. (2006). As student advocate. An identified knowledge base relative to mentoring continues to expand. This role encompasses activities associated with mentoring. Classroom instruction that works.


Some school districts are now requiring an Associate Degree for Teacher Assistants or training and passing a test for Certification. In addition. Learning about the Teacher Aide's experience and strengths will help you to know what assignments to give him or her. Some of the course content that the Teacher's Aide may receive while earning an Associate Degree is. Writing and Math. but this role is changing. Childhood Literacy. I had an awesome Teacher Assistant who did not have any prior teaching experience. but sincerely missed all that she contributed to the classroom. In the past the role of the Teacher Assistant was primarily to perform non-teaching tasks such as making photocopies. Child Guidance. father. must learn to trust the judgment and ability of the Teacher Aide. The Teacher Aide role now includes teaching small groups in Reading. Observation and Evaluation. one on one instruction to students with special needs.. She was very eager to learn and I quickly became her mentor. Make sure that the Teacher Aide knows that you are available to answer any questions. Summary . dislikes and talents. but that the Teacher Aide assists more in the teaching of the students than ever before. I had the privilege of working in a daycare for my first teaching experience in the Pre-Kindergarten classroom. So many times I used to hear "break room conversations" that the Teacher Aides do not help in the classroom. and this life experience may contribute greatly to the students' social behavior. strengths. a position in which she still holds today. This will create a positive classroom environment. a good leader will want to establish a rapport with the teacher assistant. escorting students to specials. as the teacher. Math and English. This article is not to suggest that the Teacher Aide no longer support the teacher in his/her non-teaching tasks. This may mean that you. Don't miscount life experience.THE ROLE OF A TEACHER AS A LEADER The teacher's role as a leader is an important part of his or her job. Growth and Development. and moderating exams.. The teacher must know the role that the teacher assistant will take in the classroom. I was thrilled for her about the promotion. After one year of modeling my technique and observing me. Establish a Rapport With the Teacher Assistant Start the school year off by getting to know the Teacher Assistant assigned to the classroom. Know the Role of the Teacher Assistant Never underestimate the abilities of a Teacher Assistant. Find out his or her classroom experience. It our responsibility as the teacher to make sure that they feel welcome and a part of the classroom and that they know what is expected of them. The Teacher Aide may be a grandmother. correcting homework. Family and Community. she was promoted to the Lead Teacher of the two-year old class. likes. grading tests or prepping materials for lesson plans and bulletin boards.

Religious Leaders. as that. one must install in players the skills and motivation to keep trying despite many set backs. The transformational task of a coach is dual in nature. I had a friend say to me once that children are animals. They have the task of turning an extremely selfish entity called a child into a human being. Coaches. methods and the vision of a thousand year Reich. Most theories of leadership development stress how to be effective within the status quo—what's called transactional leadership. these people are good at “rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic". Thus we see organizations decline as there is an increasingly disconnect between “the way things should be done” and “the way we do things here. To use a popular expression.” Is Transformational Leadership Always Good? The first thing to understand about transformational leadership—sometimes these leaders do not always make things better—sometimes they can make things worse. And in some sports such as basketball and soccer.In this two part series we have considered the teacher as leader through an example. However. that vision brought ruin to Germany and much of Europe. However. one takes selfish individuals and turns them into team players. Few Germans questioned his decisions. (The Economist: The Idea of Progress). Almost all the writing focuses an the managerial side of being an entrepreneur. but they change very little. and as complex. Entrepreneurs . They seek to turn the flawed into the moral and the selfish into the ethical. charismatic leader who turned a weak democratic state into a strong totalitarian one. It is as simple. First. they must must also exhibit transformational leadership or their organizations fail to grow. many organizations run lean on transformational leaders. Hitler was an extremely effective. the vast majority of the leaders inside organizations being transactional. A tougher challenge here. they must be transformed in human beings by good parents. A leader using this style can be very influential. Let's summarize this role: The teacher leads by: • • • • • • Establishing and following routines and schedules Communicating effectively and avoiding idle chatter Listening to others Making others feel welcome and giving them a sense of belonging Leading by example Appreciating and developing the strengths in other Transformational Leadership In Everyday Life Parents. One can argue that parents are transformational leaders within a small group called the family. Progress is not assured. Unfortunately. He remained an amazing popular leader who retained power until the very end. . but they can’t keep the ship from sinking. goals.

Action is supported by a set of beliefs or one has mindless impulses. These are: Self-Mastery. a desired future state that people identify with. Transformational leaders has been written about for thousands of years--being both praised (Christ and Buddha) and cursed (Attila the Hun and Genghis Khan). these individuals possess: Charisma. By creating this vision. and continually improve those around them. This is one of those leadership qualities that is hard to define. transactional leadership. it is often the case that they lack an abundance of both wisdom and virtue (Capital Virtues. "I would follow him to hell since he is the only man I know who could get me back. the means used by the Emperor was war—wars which resulted in the death of hundreds of thousands. they challenge the existing boundaries and the mental prisons people put themselves into. This involves the creation of a compelling picture of the future.Take the example of . However. leaders rely on influence. so they waste countless hours in futile effort. to business." Vision. like beauty. to achieve that end. they stay flexible and adaptable. One can argue the end (unifying China) was admirable. Often the greatest barrier to success in not others. and a way for people to feel successful. the leader provides a means for people to develop commitment. requiring as as it does a decent understanding of psychology. . However. To become a great transformational leader. In many articles and in his book. Skills Development. not the environment. He eloquently described qualities transformational leaders possess in different fields of endeavors ranging from the military. The Transformational Mind-set. The two theorists most associated with its modern incarnation in America are Bass and Burns. One of his men once said about him. Few know how to build a skill. Intellectual stimulation. one must build on Four Core Competencies. Influence. Second Exodus) Often. The Transformational Leadership Style Transformational leadership is about implementing new ideas. the First Emperor of China. I remember a quote. Inspiration. these individuals continually change themselves. Bass talked about the fundamental theoretical qualities that define transformational leadership from it's polar opposite. (Qin Shi Huang. we think of transformational leadership as as only applying to heads of great nations or hugemonous organizations. we would have to assume a set of virtues and an ability to make wise decisions. But these are not the only types of transformational individuals. to politics. Mangers rely on authority. Wikipedia) For transformational leaders to always make things better. To inspire is difficult. about a charismatic individual by the name of Oliver North. it is ourself. Bass According to Bass. Transformational leaders show new ways of looking at old problems. Enough said. a common goal around around which to rally. One cannot build a skill by reading about it. Its easy to see Great Men or Great Woman and how they succeeded in overcoming Big Problems. Improving Organizational Effectiveness Through Transformational Leadership. James McGregor Burns wrote a Pulitzer Prize winning book titled Leadership. you know it when you experience it. Burns And before him.


ensuring that their staff follow procedures exactly. Learn more. Task-oriented leadership.. Transactional leadership. Democratic leadership or participative leadership. Because of this. Bureaucratic leadership.. Transformational leadership. People within the team are given few opportunities for making suggestions. Servant leadership. People-oriented leadership or relations-oriented leadership. the team's output does not benefit from the creativity and experience of all team members. Also.Leadership Types Most common Leadership Types • • • • • • • • • • Autocratic leadership. This is a very appropriate style for work involving serious safety risks (such as working with machinery. however. so many of the benefits of teamwork are lost. Laissez-faire leadership. Autocratic Leadership Autocratic leadership is an extreme form of transactional leadership. Most people tend to resent being treated like this. Bureaucratic Leadership Bureaucratic leaders work “by the book”. where a leader exerts high levels of power over his or her employees or team members. this style can remain effective where the advantages of control outweigh the disadvantages. . For some routine and unskilled jobs. Charismatic leadership. even if these would be in the team's or organization’s interest. with toxic substances or at heights) or where large sums of money are involved (such as cash-handling). autocratic leadership usually leads to high levels of absenteeism and staff turnover.

A participative style.In other situations. Charismatic Leadership A charismatic leadership style can appear similar to a transformational leadership style. As participation takes time. and is very energetic in driving others forward. People-Oriented Leadership or Relations-Oriented Leadership This style of leadership is the opposite of task-oriented leadership: the leader is totally focused on organizing. but it also helps to develop people’s skills.. However.. success is tied up with the presence of the charismatic leader. It can be effective if the leader monitors what is being achieved and communicates this back to his or her team regularly. laissez-faire leadership works for teams in which the individuals are very experienced and skilled self-starters. Learn more. Laissez-Faire Leadership This French phrase means “leave it be” and is used to describe a leader who leaves his or her colleagues to get on with their work. However. it can also refer to situations where managers are not exerting sufficient control. a charismatic leader can tend to believe more in him or herself than in their team. taken to extremes. and can diminish the organizations ability to react to changing external circumstances. and needs long-term commitment from the leader. . This can create a risk that a project. he or she invites other members of the team to contribute to the decision-making process. Most often. This not only increases job satisfaction by involving employees or team members in what’s going on. might collapse if the leader were to leave: In the eyes of their followers. or even an entire organization. Learn more. most leaders use both task-oriented and people-oriented styles of leadership. It can be most suitable where team working is essential.. it tends to lead to good teamwork and creative collaboration. and quality is more important than speed to market or productivity. this style can lead to things happening more slowly than an autocratic approach. In practice.. Employees and team members feel in control of their own destiny. it can lead to failure to achieve the team's goals. but often the end result is better. supporting and developing the people in the leader’s team. the inflexibility and high levels of control exerted can demoralize staff. Learn more.. Democratic Leadership or Participative Leadership Although a democratic leader will make the final decision. Unfortunately. in that the leader injects huge doses of enthusiasm into his or her team.. and so are motivated to work hard by more than just a financial reward. As such. charismatic leadership carries great responsibility.

people practicing servant leadership will often find themselves left behind by leaders using other leadership styles. Task-Oriented Leadership A highly task-oriented leader focuses only on getting the job done. put structures in place. in return for their effort and compliance.Servant Leadership This term. whereby. organize and monitor. he or she is described as a “servant leader”. He or she will actively define the work and the roles required. Task-oriented leaders can benefit from an understanding of the Blake-Mouton Managerial Grid. When someone. However. In many ways. Supporters of the servant leadership model suggest it is an important way ahead in a world where values are increasingly important. as the focus is on short-term tasks. Transactional leadership is really just a way of managing rather a true leadership style. leads simply by virtue of meeting the needs of his or her team. Team members can do little to improve their job satisfaction under transactional leadership. at any level within an organization. Transactional Leadership This style of leadership starts with the premise that team members agree to obey their leader totally when they take a job on: the “transaction” is (usually) that the organization pays the team members. and can be quite autocratic. The leader could give team members some control of their income/reward by using incentives that encourage even higher standards or greater productivity. Others believe that in competitive leadership situations. the leader has the right to “punish” team members if their work doesn’t meet the pre-determined standard. which can help them identify specific areas for development that will help them involve people more. coined by Robert Greenleaf in the 1970s. as the whole team tends to be involved in decision-making. but remains a common style in many organizations. as task-oriented leaders spare little thought for the well-being of their teams. Alternatively a transactional leader could practice “management by exception”. It has serious limitations for knowledge-based or creative work. he or she would take corrective action if the required standards were not met. . As such. servant leadership is a form of democratic leadership. rather than rewarding better work. in which servant leaders achieve power on the basis of their values and ideals. plan. with difficulties in motivating and retaining staff. this approach can suffer many of the flaws of autocratic leadership. describes a leader who is often not formally recognized as such.

The work involved (routine or new and creative). To choose the most effective approach for you.Transformational Leadership A person with this leadership style is a true leader who inspires his or her team with a shared vision of the future. The transformational leadership style is the dominant leadership style taught in the "How to Lead: Discover the Leader Within You" leadership program. The transactional leaders (or managers) ensure that routine work is done reliably. as they tend to delegate responsibility amongst their teams. there is no one “right” way to lead or manage that suits all situations. A good leader will find him or herself switching instinctively between styles according to the people and work they are dealing with. For example. You own preferred or natural style. they can need to be supported by “detail people”. the manager of a small factory trains new machine operatives using a bureaucratic style to ensure operatives know the procedures that achieve the right standards of product quality and workplace safety. and spend a lot of time communicating. This is often referred to as “situational leadership”. while the transformational leaders look after initiatives that add value. The same manager may adopt a more participative style of leadership when working on production line improvement with his or her team of supervisors . Transformational leaders are highly visible. conservative or adventurous). you must consider: • • • • The skill levels and experience of the members of your team. In many organizations. although we do recommend that other styles are brought as the situation demands. While their enthusiasm is often infectious. both transactional and transformational leadership are needed. They don’t necessarily lead from the front. The organizational environment (stable or radically changing. Using the Right Style – Situational Leadership While the Transformation Leadership approach is often highly effective.

The Laissez Faire Leadership Style The style is largely a "hands off" view that tends to minimize the amount of direction and face time required. and provide outstanding customer service. the autocratic style high control and the participative lies somewhere in between. but it is falling out of favor in many countries. who have much in common with feudal lords in Medieval Europe.. Some people have argued that the style is popular with today's CEO's. The Participative Leadership Style It's hard to order and demand someone to be creative. The Autocratic Leadership Style The style has its advocates. solve complex problems. The laissez faire style implies low control. More info.Three Classic Leadership Styles One dimension of has to do with control and one's perception of how much control one should give to people. Works well if you have highly trained and highly motivated direct reports. improve quality. . The style presents a happy medium between over controlling (micromanaging) and not being engaged and tends to be seen in organizations that must innovate to prosper.. perform as a team.

almost in opposition to the goals of the transformational leadership. Surprisingly. a leadership style they use in a wide variety of situations. It's considered to be a "by the book" approach in which the person works within the rules. the research discovered that there is no one best style: leaders must adjust their leadership style to the situation as well as to the people being led. The Emergent Leadership Style Contrary to the belief of many.Determining the Best Leadership Style Situational Leadership. We see a number of ineffective managers who didn't know the behaviors to use when one taking over a new group. . and Organizations Charisma is a special leadership style commonly associated with transformational leadership. groups do not automatically accept a new "boss" as leader. one can see that there are many different aspects to being a great leader. bureaucratic organizations. While extremely powerful. Others. it is extremely hard to teach. In the 1950s. The leadership style focuses on how the leader defines the future for followers and moves them toward it. The Transformational Leadership Style The primary focus of this leadership style is to make change happen in: * * * * Our Self. The importance of the research cannot be over estimated since leaders tend to have a dominant style. Visionary Leadership Visionary Leadership. Groups. it's commonly seen in large. management theorists from Ohio State University and the University of Michigan published a series of studies to determine whether leaders should be more task or relationship (people) oriented. The Transactional Leadership Style The approach emphasizes getting things done within the umbrella of the status quo. From the short review above. a role requiring one to play many different leadership styles to be successful. As such.

Rather than being directive. A few years ago. but it still takes leadership to transition a group into a team. Here one looks at the behaviors associated how one exercises influence. Level 5 Leadership. "We were surprised. Not all individuals can adapt to the leadership styles expected in a different culture. Level 5 Leadership. and many large corporations. A great coach is definitely a leader who also possess a unique gift--the ability to teach and train. This is a special style that anyone who runs a meeting can employ. does the person mostly punish? Do they know how to reward? Cross-Cultural Leadership Cross-Cultural Leadership." Today. Team Leadership Team Leadership. companies have gotten smarter about teams. shocked really. to discover the types of leadership required for turning a good company into a great one. This term was coined by Jim Collins in his book Good to Great: Why Some Company’s Make the Leap and Other Don’t. It stresses the competitive nature of running an organization and being able to out fox and out wit the competition. Coaching Coaching." . For example. Facilitative Leadership Facilitative Leadership. whether that culture is organizational or national.Other leadership styles include: Strategic Leadership Strategic Leadership is practiced by the military services such as the US Army. one uses a number of indirect communication patterns to help the group reach consensus. Leadership Influence Styles Leadership Influence Styles. US Air Force. As Collins says in his book. a large corporation decided that supervisors were no longer needed and those in charge were suddenly made "team leaders.

Servant Leadership. "To Protect and Serve. One suspects these leaders are rare in business." reflects this philosophy of service. . Some leaders have put the needs of their followers first. For example. Servant Leadership. the motto of the Los Angeles Police Department.

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