Situational Leadership ® according to Blanchard & Hersey

Situational leadership > Blanchard & Hersey

In the latter part of the 20th century Situational Leadership ® got a new face when Ken Blanchard and Paul Hersey introduced what has become know as ”The situational leadership”. A situational leadership in their definition had its basis in the co-workers readyness, which they viewed as the most important situational factor.

The degree of readyness is central in Situational Leadership ®

From this degree of readyness in the the members of the team or the group the leader then adapts his och her leadership behaviour. The two gentlemen here mentioned had to key terms that formed a foundation for their model of situational leadership. The first being directing which is the same as a taskoriented leadership. The second being support or consideration which is the same as a relationshiporiented leadership.

Directing and supporting leadership

The degree of focus on either directing or supporting, or both at the same time, is dependent upon the knowledge, willingness and courage of ones co-workers. With individuals who are unknowledgeble, unwilling and feeling insecure a higher degree of directing is required, a clarity and direction which creates trust. If the group you are leading is compent, has a high level of willingness and dares to go into action, then less directing is needed and so on. These are some of the basic principles of situational leadership.

Four leadership styles in Situational Leadership ®

Their thoughts about adapting the leadership to the development level of the group, Blanchard & Hersey have formulated in different ways, one of them being in Ken Blanchards ”The One Minute Manager” series of books. By combining the two concepts of directing and supporting leadership we find four different leadership styles, four different pairings, high direction – low support etc. These four styles have had different names through the years but can for example be called Directing Leadership, Coaching Leadership, Supporting Leadership and Delegating Leadership.

Situational leadership II

In later years the model for Situational Leadership ® has been further developed and for your leadership training you probably will now find it under the name of Situational Leadership II.

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