Today we conclude our discussion on the styles of leadership that are most effective. In my eBook, Ethics in the Real World (2013) my research work revealed that an individual’s attitude and values reflects their predispositions toward other people, objects, concepts, and events. They rely on their experience and perceptions to solve issues sometimes allowing their emotions to govern the thinking and decision-making process. An individual, for instance, without suitable self-management skills, may experience more challenges in social situations and make different decisions than a confident manager with self-esteem. In addition, a leader that lacks self-awareness may be unable to pick up on the feelings and emotions of others. This can make it difficult to develop healthy relationships because of an inability to relate with compassion to other people (Berry, 2013). All of these components can help shape an individual’s leadership style and what they perceive as ethical behavior.
In my experience, the best leaders are those that continue to re-examine outdated views and business paradigms to develop, or upgrade systems, maintain smooth operational functions, and inspire staff members to achieve high production rates. This style of leadership exhibits a kind of manager who makes mindful choices and works diligently to keep morale up.
In his book, Leadership Aikido, John O’Neil (1999) introduces six concepts inspired by the martial arts tradition that focuses on victory without harm. The following six master practices helps to provide an outline that managers can use to assess and develop an effective leadership style:
- Cultivating self-knowledge;
- Practicing the paradoxical art of planning;
- Speaking the language of mastery;
- Letting values drive the decision making process;
- Turning failure into success; and
- Heeding the law of unintended consequences (O’Neil, 1999).
O’Neil asserts that through the elements of Aikido, leaders are in a better position to identify and overcome what he defines as the five inner enemies that can impede progress: (1) failure to grow emotionally; (2) failure to make creative decisions; (3) failure to empathize; (4) failure to manage ego; and (5) failure to overcome alienation and boredom (O’Neil, 1999). This perspective embraces personal power and energy as the vital components for developing effective leadership styles.
My research work on leadership styles, led me to conclude, that being liked is not the most important component of an effective leadership style. I do believe, however, that when developing a leadership style that will yield successful results, individuals must cultivate the ability to garner high levels of trust and respect and by doing so, they will automatically be liked.
The truth is, leaders will not always be able to produce satisfactory results for everyone in the workplace because not all policies and regulations enforced are popular. It is imperative nonetheless, that managers display a kind of leadership style that staff members can accept – one that commands respect, nurtures relationships, and builds employee loyalty. In other words, if a manager is not acknowledged, valued, or venerated on some level, it will be difficult to achieve objective goals and experience higher levels of success in the organization.
Well, that’s it for this week. Thanks for checking in! Until next time … stay organized!
“Trust your own instinct. Your mistakes might as well be your own, instead of someone else’s.” – Billy Wilder
For more information on Media Magic’s digital publications, or to purchase any of our Business Life audio book titles, please visit amazon.com’s new feature called “Author Central” to view:
Berry, M. A. (2013). Ethics in the Real World. USA: Kindle Direct Publishing.
O’Neil, J. (1999). Leadership aikido. New York, NY: Three Rivers Press.