The point of this exercise is simple. It demonstrates that people like to be led in different waysways that are natural to their interpersonal preferences. The results of failing to adapt to others preferencesmiscommunication, resentment, irritation, and lack of commitmentbear directly upon productivity and quality. Conversely, adapting to others leads to greater buy in, motivation and understandingall of which positively affect the bottom line.
There exists a widespread myth that there is one right or best way to lead. Much of the current literature on leadership supports and promotes this myth. However, my experience as a leader and as a leadership development specialist suggests otherwise.
I believe that leadership effectiveness arises out of the combination of two key factors: (1) actions that are appropriate to the dynamics of the circumstances, and (2) an interpersonal approach that is appropriate to the individuals being led.
With regard to the first of these two factors, my business partner, Ellen Samiec, and I have identified five distinct tacticswhat we term, leadership dimensionsthat need to be employed when responding to the varied circumstances and situations leaders encounter. These dimensions address the first half of the equation of leadership effectiveness, actions that are appropriate to the dynamics of the circumstances.