Beyond a shadow of a doubt, the best facilitators of Situational Leadership® are practitioners. They are undoubtedly familiar with the pioneering research contributions that form the foundation of the model, but they rarely spend precious time during a workshop reviewing that history. Conversely, they communicate the essence of what learners need to know to immediately enhance their potential to effectively influence others.
In fulfilling that responsibility these facilitators position what we affectionately refer to as “inevitable a-ha moments.” These are the points in time during training when learners understand how the Situational Leadership® Model works and simultaneously envision its common-sense utility. In no order of priority or import, these are some of the practical realities that come to light:
- Leaders are thoughtful people; they control their impulses no matter what kind of chaos is going on around them and discipline themselves to think before they do!
- The most inconsistent thing a leader can do is to treat every person and approach every situation the same way!
- There is no such thing as a good or a bad leadership style. They all work—and they all don’t!
- Organizational resiliency at a macro level is a function of frontline-manager adaptability and flexibility in the moment and in the trenches
- Managers in organizations add value by accelerating the development and redirecting the performance slippage of the employees and associates on their teams
- We live in a dynamic world! Nothing … ever … stays the same! Things are either getting better or they are getting worse! As such, leaders need to accurately assess their current reality—and respond accordingly
Armed with that insight, novice Situational Leaders return to their roles with fresh perspective and a plan to implement what they have learned. At a minimum, they are aware of their natural leadership-related strengths, as well as the styles and situations that provide them with the most trouble. They know the importance of channeling their efforts to influence on a task-specific basis. People do not fit into “boxes!” However, their readiness fits into boxes based on the explicit activity they are being asked to perform and the circumstances that surround that performance. This distinction is critical! Above all else, Situational Leaders are performance catalysts. They direct and reinforce the iterative progress of those they influence through ebbs and flows of performance development, all the way to mastery. They are also the first responders when it comes time to effectively manage the inevitable, and periodically intimidating, forces of change.
So, why should people take the time to learn Situational Leadership®? Because learning the language of Situational Leadership® is the all-important first step to becoming a practicing Situational Leader!