All entries for Monday 25 March 2013

March 25, 2013

Comparing different leadership styles: A pointless exercise?

The trouble with so many leadership styles is how do you know which one you are? Also, since there's no reason why you can't possess more than one style, it begs the question: why even bother differentiating between different approaches?

So far in my attempt to answer the PMA question, I have come across a dozen styles or approaches already. Examples include: Trait theory, contingency theory, Transactional theory, Transformational Theory, Strategic Theory, Autocratic, democratic, etc.

Just when you think that's it..there can't possibly be anymore styles, some author comes up with a new leadership style. For example, I came across this article where the author argues that in effect, there are really only two basic types of leaders i.e. incremental leaders and disruptive leaders.

Incremental leaders are those that maintain the stability of an organization. On the other hand, disruptive leaders challenge the status quo and create major, noticeable changes. The author suggests that both types can lead to success, so essentially we are back to square one. Why should we stress ourselves in comparing them? Is is not besides the point.

After giving it some thought, I have come to the conclusion that it is nonetheless important to figure out what type of leader you are. It will help inform you how best to run your organization so that it has a positive impact on the society. At the end of the day, it is about knowing yourself and knowing what works for you.


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