No-nonsense guide to effective leadership skills, Part 6

By JOHNNY CARCIOPPOLO / Community Columnist

How do you know when your leadership style needs updated? It might be when a new task arrives that calls for different team members or when your responsibilities shift.

You may need to change your leadership style when the company itself changes. Other reasons for change may include the fact that the needs of the project have changed and grown.

Another reason why you should change your leadership style is that the one you are using is ineffective.

The first thing you need to determine is the reason for the change. Once you’ve done that, you need to determine what the right style would be. These might include:

  • Directive leader where you are focused on the task and emphasize a set schedule. This style is commanding and inflexible.
  • A supportive leader is friendly and has an open communication policy. You form relationships with your subordinates.
  • Participative leaders allow team members to make some of the decisions and ask for their opinions.
  • An achievement-oriented leader is one who set difficult goals. This style expects team members to be top performers.
  • Visionary leadership style creates vision and direction. They know team members’ commitment must be earned.
  • A pace-setting style is one where the leader is a strong role model and demonstrates standards. Pace setters do the work as well as lead others.
  • Coaching leadership style uses coaching to help others advance their skills and create positive work environment. They ask questions and guide the team members to find answers.
  • An affiliative leader creates harmony and builds good relationships. They provide regular feedback.
  • Democratic leaders share the problem with relevant team members to come up with solutions and alternatives.

There will be times you need to change the way you are leading others. It can be as simple as the members of the team are inexperienced and need a different type of leadership. Determining when you should change your leadership style will help you be an effective leader and stay in tune with what your project and business needs are.