That saying — “style over substance” — makes an important point. Sure, a rocker’s getup is part of the package, but no one wins a Grammy on an outfit alone.
When it comes to Leadership Styles, the same lesson applies. Leaders can’t succeed on swagger. But I believe style does have something to do with their success. In fact, when leaders discover their style, they unlock greater “substance” and lead with improved agility and heightened confidence.
Leading with your Best Styles
PeopleBest research has revealed six natural leadership styles: Autocratic, Consensus, Compassion, Mentor, Navigator, and Relentless. Many leaders use their predominant style almost exclusively, resulting in mixed degrees of success. The most effective emerging leaders in today’s rapidly changing business environment find and use a blend of their unique strengths.
Here’s a quick run-down on the six leadership styles.
Autocratic: Demands immediate change and compliance in a very directed style.
Consensus: Builds agreement and harmony through participation.
Compassion: Works to create emotional bonds that bring a feeling of bonding and belonging to the organization.
Mentor: Identifies people’s unique strengths and weaknesses and ties them to personal and career aspirations.
Navigator: Mobilizes a team toward a common vision and focuses on end goals, leaving the means up to each individual.
Relentless: Expects extremely high-performance standards, as found in oneself.
The dark side of substance
Each of these leaders is naturally gifted in a specific type of management. In other words, each style is accompanied by “substance.” But these have a potential downside if not used well. Each type of leader has several strengths where managers excel. Each type also has a couple of areas where leaders naturally struggle.
Take leaders who fall in the “compassionate” category. These leaders shine as they create loyalty through the strong emotional bonds they’ve built with their reports. Their teams are marked by flexibility and trust. And they’re willing to give employees plenty of autonomy to accomplish their best work.
But these leaders are often swamped in process — they’re the type to hold those should-have-been-an-email meetings. They may also give workers a little too much trust, inspiring mediocrity rather than excellence. And they can sometimes excuse poor performance when they’re reluctant to correct sloppiness quickly and directly.
Discover your style — and its substance
Here’s the good news about the two sides of substance: When leaders understand their natural style and the “substance” that comes with it, they’re equipped to maximize their strengths and minimize their weaknesses. This self-awareness will allow leaders to pick and choose when they put their natural styles to use, and when they deliberately employ another style — even if it’s not their go-to method of management. With increased agility, they’ll see success in no time.
To learn more about your leadership styles, get in touch with PeopleBest: [email protected]. We can equip you, your leaders and your teams with style and substance, book a demo and set up a time to chat with one of our specialists.
PeopleBest is a revolutionary, simple and powerful way to capture the exact ‘DNA of success’ inside people, teams and companies.