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How to Determine What Kind of Leader You Want to Be in a Team Setting


You could find yourself in a leadership capacity in a team in various settings. Consider the annual trade exhibition, the performance review board, and the computer-installation committee.

Leadership in this situation should focus on getting people to work together, both with you and between themselves. This is extremely important to remember if you are in charge of a group of your peers or coworkers.

There are three possible camps to which you might assign your leadership style while dealing with your team. You may be in charge of High Direction, where you have a more directive role. Low Direction is one possibility in which you take on more of a facilitative and counseling role. Alternatively, you might adopt a style of leadership that combines elements of both High Direction and Low Direction.

The difficulty lies in deciding which style of leadership to adopt. In general, you should give your team members Low Direction if their performance is good, High Direction if it is terrible, and High and Low Direction if average.

A Low Direction leadership style might be appropriate in the following three scenarios. If your team members do not fit this description, you may need to modify your approach to leadership.

The members of this team are fully invested in their tasks: This could be the case if team members are eager to contribute to the group’s goals. It could also be the case if team members know the advantages of participating.

If members have this attitude, it won’t be necessary to “sell” them on the value of pitching in. Instead, as team leader, it will be up to you to strengthen their resolve. One way to achieve this is to express gratitude for members’ efforts. Maintaining team member awareness of how their contributions affect team success is also essential.

When team members have worked together before, they may have developed strategies for resolving disagreements and improving communication. Members may also have had to work through differences or find common ground with challenging coworkers.

If this is the case, members need time to cool off and figure out how to resolve their differences. Do not rush to be a referee at the first sign of conflict in a close connection. In addition, you shouldn’t have to “tell” others how to disagree civilly.

Instead, as team leader, it will be your responsibility to ensure that only valuable ideas are being discussed. You should contribute in a way that sustains a discussion of the team’s objectives and ultimately results in a shared appreciation for the merits of different points of view.

You can trust your team members to get the job done right since they have the specialized knowledge and experience necessary to complete the tasks. This may also be the case if team members have previously worked together. Perhaps they have a complete picture of the team and their roles.

If this is the case, you won’t have to micromanage everyone’s time by telling them exactly when and how to get things done. As the leader, it will be your responsibility to ensure that everyone in the team knows what they need to do and when and what can affect their workload or how they are evaluated. You should also ensure everyone can access the data and tools they need to succeed.

One of the keys to being an effective team leader is learning to adapt.

Being a team leader cannot be taught in a classroom. There may be moments when detailed explanations and directions are required. The “hands-off” method may be necessary in other situations. Consider the strengths of your team members as a whole as you formulate your leadership strategy. There are a few to think about, and this article highlights three: role dedication, conflict skills, and task competence.

Dr. Barbara Brown is a consultant, trainer, and author specializing in methods for peak performance in the workplace.

She has developed over a dozen apps for the iPhone and iPad that offer advice on improving one’s career prospects.

Teamwork: Effective Strategies for Building Cohesive Groups is a mobile app.

Read also: Finding Happiness Through Risk-Taking Activities.