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The Situational Leadership Model

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The Situational Leadership Model

Situational leadership is interplay between the amounts of direction
that a leader allows in: 1) the amount of directive (task) behavior
and 2) the amount of relationship behavior (supportive behavior). What
this means is that when an individual first begins a new task they
require a lot of direction and managerial guidance. As they learn more
about the task, the amount of direction decreases until they can make
many of the decisions with the manager providing little input. The
situational leadership model developed and refined by Paul Hersey and
Ken Blanchard divides the model into four quadrants. An explanation of
the four segments is below.

Envision starting a new job with many assigned tasks. Fear of the
unknown takes hold and feelings of self-doubt rise. How am I going to
learn all of this? The situational leadership model, if followed by
your new manager, can provide him/her direction to ensure positive
reinforced learning.

The model is described as a four-block diagram with text inside with
an X-axis (bottom) and Y-axis (left) and more text. Below the X-axis
is a rectangular object with arrows pointing to the left with more
text. Does not mean much yet, but wait for a clearer explanation.

The situational leadership model consists of four leadership styles:
1) S1, directing; 2) S2, coaching; 3) S3, supporting; and 4) S4,
delegating. An X-axis and Y-axis provide direction on the type of
behavior used. The X-axis and Y-axis represent directive or supportive
behavior, respectively. The D1, D2, D3, and D4 in the lower ...

... middle of paper ...

...e/she was the dishes after every meal. Motivation
was high and began to decrease.

This is the shift to the supporting quadrant, where the follower is
able to perform but the motivation (willingness) is falling off.
Through the support, encouragement, and praise from the leader
motivation returns upon crossing into the delegating stage. Here we
have the follower fully motivated and able to perform.

In summary, the situational leadership model provides a leader a
shifting process for teaching a follower through their varying
learning phases. As the follower learns a skill and gains the
confidence to perform it alone, the leader reduces the amount of
direction and support provide. Both the leader and the follower
undergo changes during the learning but the adaptability of each will
determine the degree of success.

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