Leadership Connection

An effective leader matches his or her leadership style to “fit” the people they are leading and the situation they are in.  This “fit” is based on two critical areas…

  • The competence of the people involved
  • The relationship of the people involved to the situation to be handled

There are a number of ways one can define “competence.” Surely, though, if we were able to describe an ideally “competent” person, we would no doubt say that that this is a person with a lot of background in the job, who is highly interested in the job, and who can set goals and carry out the work very well. For our purposes then, we will say that “competence” depends on three things…

  1. Enthusiasm: the amount of interest, commitment to and “motivation” for doing the job well  (Attitude)
  2. Work ability: how well the person can set appropriate goals and carry out the work correctly (Skill)
  3. Background: the amount of prior education, training and experience in doing the work (Knowledge)

An easy way to use this is to say that there are three levels of competence: low, medium, and high. And, from competence we can identify three types of leadership styles. Each leadership style is appropriate for a given level of competence.

In Summary

Leadership In Us All Diagram

An effective leadership style describes a pattern of communication between the leader and the other person. Depending on the competence in the situation, the leader spends varying amounts of time in relationship with the other person.  The most inspiring and motivating leader uses a style that “fits” the other person’s needs and matches appropriately to the


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