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4 leadership styles you need to know about

4 different leadership styles

Almost everybody wants to be a leader. Maybe it’s for money or power, or maybe they mistakenly think that once they’ve made it into a leadership position, they’ll be able to put their feet up and rest – but as most of you know, this couldn’t be further from the truth.

Leadership is not just a title or label – it’s a mindset and a pattern of behaviour. The higher your position in a company, the bigger your responsibilities will be and the greater the expectation to consistently perform at a high level and deliver results will be.

So to be a great leader, you’ll have to essentially be a living and breathing bundle of soft skills and constantly find new ways to add value to an organisation.

It’s definitely not a walk in the park. 

There are actually 4 different leadership styles, and understanding which leadership style best suits you will allow you to perform and lead at your highest potential.

Task-based leadership

Key Concern: WHAT is the idea?

Ideas are the bread and butter of task-based leaders and many entrepreneurs fall under this leadership style.
They’re all about pushing forward new ideas and project proposals, and constantly moving on to the next big thing. It’s all about taking action. 

While these leaders are great at getting things moving, they aren’t so great at completing projects over a longer period of time.

People-based leadership

Key Concern: WHO is the best person for the job?

As the name implies, this particular style of leadership is based around working with others.
More specifically, it’s about inspiring them and assisting them in performing at their highest level.
People-based leaders take leadership down to the individual level and personalise it, making sure that the entire team is on track.

Activity-based leadership

Key Concern: WHEN is the deadline?

These leaders have a more hand-on approach to leadership. They’re all about constantly checking up on the team and making sure everything is running smoothly and efficiently – and lending a helping hand if needed.
They will make sure what needs to be done will get done on time, and not a second later.

Data-based leadership

Key Concern: HOW will we reach our objectives?

Numbers and statistics are what data-based leaders thrive on. They’re the magicians of the business world; numbers-focused, leading the team using statistics to make informed decisions.

Believe it or not, everybody actually has a leadership style that comes naturally to them.
Yes, even you (although you might not be ready to lead quite yet!)

Your leadership style is more or less fixed – you definitely can develop the other aspects of leadership, but it can be a bit like trying to write with your non-dominant hand. It’s just going to make things harder than they have to be.
By focusing on correcting a weakness, you’re incurring an opportunity cost, which means you’ll have less time and energy to master what you’re already good at. 

However, it’s important to keep in mind that sometimes a weakness could be an undiscovered strength, and many of the skills that are required at higher levels don’t come naturally to a lot of people.
That being said; as a rule of thumb, unless you have any glaring weaknesses, developing what you’re already good at will produce a much higher ROI (Return On Investment) than trying to make up for what you’re not good at.

Of course, most people do not fit entirely into one category – most are a combination of at least two leadership styles, but you’ll always have a dominant leadership style, and this is what you should be aware of and begin developing.

Don’t forget – It’s a cycle!
You don’t need to be a master of everything in order to add value. Projects are almost always put through this production line of leadership – each leader adding something new and unique to the mix.

Until next time,
Thai Ngo.

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