Does your leadership style match your role?Jul 30, 2023
VICTORIA BROWN | JULY 2023
In the world of leadership, there's no one-size-fits-all. The "right" style depends on a myriad of factors – the team's needs, company culture, and the specific objectives of your role. Whatever style you use - your core objectives as a leader should remain constant: inspire, motivate, and lead your team towards success.
But - what is a "Leadership Style"?
Diverse leadership styles have evolved over time – autocratic, democratic, laissez-faire, transactional, transformational, authentic and many more. These styles have their merits and can be effective in the right context. Leadership styles are a helpful way for us to categorise different leadership approaches, and to give us a way to assess style "fit".
✅ The right fit in leadership is when your unique style aligns with the needs of your team and your organisation. For instance, if you lead a team of creative professionals who value autonomy and the free flow of ideas, an authentic leadership style promoting openness, mutual respect, and feedback will create a thriving environment.
🚫 On the other hand - the wrong fit occurs when your leadership style clashes with your team or organisational needs. For example, an autocratic style in a team that values collaboration and inclusivity might lead to demotivation and disengagement.
Authentic - my personal fave.
The ONE style that I truly believe works in most corporate and start up instances is the "authentic leadership" style. It emphasises self-awareness, relational transparency, balanced processing, and internalised moral perspective.
- Self-Awareness: Understanding your strengths, weaknesses, beliefs, and values. This insight is essential to leading with genuineness and integrity. Related specific skills: self awareness, EQ, self development and growth focus, resilience.
- Relational Transparency: Being open and honest in expressing your thoughts and feelings. This transparency builds trust and fosters strong relationships within your team. Specific leadership skills: communication, EQ, trust.
- Balanced Processing: Fairly considering all relevant data before making decisions. This approach promotes a culture of respect and inclusivity. Specific leadership skills: thinking styles, strategic and ROI lens, agility.
- Internalised Moral Perspective: Guiding your actions with a strong internal moral compass. This element ensures ethical decision-making and establishes you as a role model for your team. Specific leadership skills: purpose, values, vision, motivation, confidence, discipline.
Authentic leaders are true to themselves. They understand their values, beliefs, strengths, and weaknesses and use this self-awareness to lead with empathy and understanding. These leaders are transparent, ethical, and open to feedback. By practicing authentic leadership, you stay true to your unique style while prioritising the objectives of your role. This is why I really like this style, because it allows you to be yourself, while still being an effective leader - and not only does it give you permission to be yourself, it actually says that being yourself will be (and is) part of your leadership super power.
HOW do you do this? Well firstly, you have to be yourself (doh!), then secondly you have to understand what your team and business need - and look at how your authentic style will be able to empower you towards the goals. A couple of key tips:
- Understand Your Team: Invest time in understanding your team's needs, strengths, and work preferences. This understanding enables you to adapt your approach to better suit your team.
- Feedback is Essential: Regular feedback sessions with your team can provide insights into how effectively your leadership style is working and where adjustments may be required.
- Be Open to Learning and Growth: Be prepared to learn and develop new skills. Sometimes, adapting your leadership style means learning to communicate better, improving your decision-making, or being more open to new ideas.
- Cultivate the leadership skills Authentic Leaders need to use this style. Leaders in my Epic Leader Acceleratorr will already recognise that list of leadership skills as that's the skill pathway we take within the program.
Leadership isn't a static quality but a dynamic process that evolves with you, your team, and your organisation. As a leader, your task isn't to find the "perfect" style. Instead, it's about continuously aligning your authentic leadership style with the evolving needs of your team and your role - that's why agility and growth is important because you'll always be evolving and growing. When you achieve this alignment, you create an environment where you, your team, and your biz can thrive.
Let's think about this for a moment..
1. How would you describe your authentic leadership style?
2. In what ways can your unique style align with your team's needs and your culture?
3. Can you recall a situation where you adapted your leadership style to better fit a context or meet a need? How did it play out?
4. Looking ahead, what aspects of your leadership style do you want to develop or adjust?
Enrol in the Epic Leaders Accelerator Program now and build your leadership skillset that empowers your best style ever.