Situational Leadership Theory is a theory developed by leadership consultants Paul Hersey and Ken Blanchard. This follower style is often seen with new employees who are keen to impress their supervisor, but still lack the work experience to be productive right from the start. The Hersey-Blanchard situational leadership theory suggests that there is a fifth type of leader: one that can adapt their style based on the situation that they encounter. The Hersey-Blanchard Situational Leadership Theory was created by Dr Paul Hersey, a professor and author of "The Situational Leader," and Ken Blanchard, author of the best selling "The One-Minute Manager," among others. That allows for fires to be put out and morale to be salvaged, but it also creates issues where personal development can be stalled. Situational Leadership emerged as one of a related group of two-factor theories of leadership, many of which originated in research done at Ohio State University in the 1960s. Paul Hersey and Ken Blanchard. Lacoursiere's research in the 1980s synthesized the findings from 238 groups. The horizontal axis the level of maturity (independence of the employee) is indicated in the gradation high to low. And where Hersey used ‘Telling’, ‘Selling’ and ‘Participating’, Blanchard used the words ‘Directing‘, ‘Coaching‘ and ‘Supporting‘ respectively. The theory was first introduced as ‘life cycle theory of leadership’ (Blanchard & Hersey 1996) and later renamed to situational leadership theory’ (1972). Telling:Directive and authoritative approach. Instead, it all depends on the situation at hand and which type of leadership and strategies are best-suited to the task. [2] During the mid-1970s, life cycle theory of leadership was renamed "Situational Leadership Theory. The model can therefore be considered as part of the larger Situational and Contingency Theories of Leadership of which Fiedler’s Contingency Model of Leader-Situation Matches is also part. Of these, no one style is considered optimal for all leaders to use all the time. In addition, the leader puts a high level of trust in the follower to achieve the day-to-day tasks as the follower’s competence has also grown over time. This means to what extent a leader puts emphasis on building and maintaining a good relationship with subordinates by paying attention to the security, well-being and personal needs of the employees. Hersey and Blanchard characterized leadership style in terms of the amount of task behavior and relationship behavior that the leader provides to their followers. An important note about Hersey and Blanchard to start with! Moreover, Blanchard used the term Competence (meaning: skills, knowledge and abilities) instead of Hersey’s term Ability. Situational leadership is related to contingency theory therein they both view success as a result of matching leadership abilities and style with the situation. As reaction to behavioural leadership approaches such as Blake and Mouton’s Managerial Grid, Hersey and Blanchard developed a theory (Hersey and Blanchard Situational Leadership Theory) that suggests that the most effective leadership style is affected by the circumstances leaders find themselves in. The Situational Leadership Model has two fundamental concepts: leadership style and the individual or group's performance readiness level, also referred to as maturity level or development level. Even though Hersey and Blanchard worked together for years to support the notion that leadership styles should be situational, they decided to go separate ways in 1977 to focus on their own agendas. ! Instead of staying focused on the overall objectives, situational managers can fall into a trap where they are evaluating or responding to an immediate circumstance all the time. As the individual gains experience and is appropriately supported and directed by their leader they reach development level 2 and gain some competence, but their commitment drops because the task may be more complex than the individual had originally perceived when they began the task. A R2 follower is just like a R1 follower unable to perform a certain task, but in contrast to a R1 follower, willing to try anyway. In some situations, they may need to have a telling style. The S3 leadership style applies to both R3 and D3 followers. They categorized all leadership styles into four behavior styles, which they named S1 to S4. Individuals are experienced and able to do the task but lack the confidence or the willingness to take on responsibility. New York, NY: Warner Books. [4], According to Ken Blanchard, "Four combinations of competence and commitment make up what we call 'development level. A leader’s relationship with followers is therefore likely to go through different stages as these abilities and willingness can change over time. Their skills, knowledge, and ability will affect their delivery of a task independently of a leader’s guidance. Despite its intuitive appeal, several studies do not support the prescriptions offered by situational leadership theory. Cycle Theory of Leadership,”1 and it was authored by Drs. Pro’s The simplicity of the theory makes it easy to apply. Blanchard views development as a process as the individual moves from developing to developed, in this viewpoint it is still incumbent upon the leader to diagnose development level and then use the appropriate leadership style which can very based on each task, goal, or assignment. focuses on the followers and their readiness! Individuals lack the specific skills required for the job in hand and they are willing to work at the task. Tuckman's later work identified a fifth stage of development called "termination". Situational Leadership Model - Hersey and Blanchard Paul Hersey and Ken Blanchard first published their Situational Leadership® Model in their 1982 book, Management of Organizational Behaviour: Utilizing Human Resources . Blanchard preferred to use the word Development instead of Readiness as followers are likely to ‘grow’ in their abilities throughout time. In The Art of Strategy we learned the importance of fully understanding a situation before even considering action. A leader’s primary concern lays with the task delivery and less with the personal needs of the subordinates. Situational Leadership Theory, or the Situational Leadership Model, is a model created by Paul Hersey and Ken Blanchard, developed while working on Management of Organizational Behavior. Situational Leadership Theory. The four leadership styles that are presented in this theory are Telling, Selling, Participating, and Delegating. As followers gain experience they reach development level 2 (D2) and gain some competence, but their commitment drops because the task may be more complex than the follower had originally perceived at the start of the task. What Is Situational Leadership® Theory?. Blanchard and his colleagues continued to iterate and revise A Situational Approach to Managing People. The next leadership style is the high directive and high supportive S2 leadership style. The idea behind situational leadership is that you, the leader, should change your leadership approach to be more or less directive, and more or less supportive, based on the situation.. And the situation means whether your direct report (i.e., team member) is a competent and committed superstar, or on the other end of the scale, an incompetent … These theories mainly focus on task requirements, peers’ expectation and behavior, employees’ characteristics, expectations and behavior, organizational culture and policies, etc. width="25%" align="center" | S4. A follower’s or subordinate’s Psychological Readiness is the degree to which they are willing to take on responsibility for their actions. [4], In 1985 Blanchard introduced situational leadership II (SLII) in the book A Situational Approach to Managing People. In this model, leaders are flexible according to the needs of their subordinates and the demands of the situation. The Hersey–Blanchard situational leadership theory identified four levels of maturity M1 through M4: Maturity levels are also task-specific. "[3] Hersey and Blanchard's model is considered as part of the larger Situational and Contingency Theories of Leadership of which Fiedler's Contingency Model of Leadership Situation is also a part. They propose that different leadership styles be employed depending on the situation, as defined by both the orientation of the manager (either task or relations focussed) and the maturity (or experience) of the employee. A person might be generally skilled, confident and motivated in their job, but would still have a maturity level M1 when asked to perform a task requiring skills they don't possess. Typical behaviour for a S1 leadership style, according to Hersey, is offering step-by-step instructions, clear explanation of the consequences of non-performance and close supervision. Hersey and Blanchard Situational Leadership Model: Adapting the Leadership Style to the Follower The Hersey-Blanchard Model is also referred to as the Situational Leadership Model or Theory. These two-factor theories hold that possibilities in leadership style are composed of combinations of two main variables: task behavior and relationship behavior. The reason for this behaviour are twofold: followers could be unmotived to comply with the leader’s request or could (still) be nervous about performing the task without enough support and encouragement from the leader. Over time, this group made changes to the concepts of the original situational leadership theory in several key areas, which included the research base, the leadership style labels, and the individual's development level continuum. width="25%" align="center" | S3 In 1979, Ken Blanchard founded Blanchard Training & Development, Inc., (later The Ken Blanchard Companies) together with his wife Margie Blanchard and a board of founding associates. Lastly, we have the R4 followers: they are ready, able and willing to perform. These behaviors serve as resistance to group influence and task requirements and can cause performance to drop. The final leadership style assumes a low supportive and a low directive behaviour and applies to R4 and D4 followers. A leader’s directive behaviour will fall somewhere on a spectrum from high to low and reflects the ‘concern for production‘-dimension of Blake and Mouton’s Managerial Grid. To Hersey and Blanchard, there leadership styles stem from four basic behaviors, designated with a letter-number combination: 1. S-1 Telling 2. Situational leadership theory is also known as the Hersey-Blanchard Situational Leadership Theory, after its developers, Dr. Paul Hersey, and Kenneth Blanchard. Hersey argued that this style is needed for R2 followers who are willing, but not able to perform a task. The Hersey-Blanchard Model is also referred to as the Situational Leadership Model or Theory. R3 followers are likely to be able to perform well on their task, since they have developed the necessary skill set. Individuals are experienced at the task, and comfortable with their own ability to do it well. This includes aspects such as their motivation, drive, energy and confidence in their own ability. For this, Blanchard used the term Commitment (meaning: confidence and motivation) instead of Hersey’s term Willingness. Hence, the Hersey and Blanchard Situational Leadership Model (Figure 1), which was originally labelled The Life Cycle Theory of Leadership, has developed into two slightly divergent models. [1] The theory was first introduced in 1969 as "life cycle theory of leadership". ).2 Kanfer and Ackerman's study of motivation and cognitive abilities and the difference between commitment and confidence, task knowledge and transferable skills. The leader will therefore only encourage and offer feedback when needed to motivate and develop the subordinate, but not as a comment on the task performance. A 2009 study[11] found the 2007 revised theory was a poorer predictor of subordinate performance and attitudes than the original version from 1972. Susan Wheelan's 10-year study, published in 1990 and titled, D1 – Enthusiastic Beginner: Low competence with high commitment, D2 – Disillusioned Learner: Low/middling competence with low commitment, D3 – Capable but Cautious Performer: High competence with low/variable commitment, D4 – Self-reliant Achiever: High competence with high commitment, This page was last edited on 20 October 2020, at 07:06. In the late 1970s/early 1980s, Hersey and Blanchard both developed their own slightly divergent versions of the Situational Leadership Theory: the Situational Leadership Model (Hersey) and the Situational Leadership II model (Blanchard et al.). Effective leadership varies, not only with the person or group that is being influenced, but it also depends on the task, job, or function that needs to be accomplished.[3]. Hersey and Blanchard's 1969 life cycle theory of leadership (later renamed situational leadership theory) was based on an interpretation of existing empirical research. Management of Organizational Behavior: Utilizing Human Resources. Hersey, P. (1985). This approach to leadership suggests the need to match two key elements appropriately: the leader’s leadership style and the followers’ maturity or preparedness levels. But they still lack the competence, which increases their need for directive behaviour. [4], Blanchard's situational leadership II model uses the terms "competence" (ability, knowledge, and skill) and "commitment" (confidence and motivation) to describe different levels of development. The situational leadership concept was originally developed by Paul Hersey, author of the book Situational leader and Ken Blanchard, a leadership guru in (1969). These ‘Disillusioned Learners‘ therefore need a leader with a higher concern for supportive behaviour that helps them gain confidence and become motivated again. Blanchard, however, believes this style is necessary for D2 followers, who used to be highly enthousiastic in the beginning but who lost confidence because their competences are failing them. ! Situational Leadership®, once called the Life Cycle Theory, is a business management model created by Paul Hersey and Ken Blanchard.Blanchard and Hersey's model, which first gained notice in the early 1970s, is based on a contingency leadership style. In chronological order, the leadership styles rank from least ready (requiring the most amount of direction and support) to most ready (requiring the least amount of direction and support). The appropriate level of directive behaviour that leaders will have to choose depends on the readiness or development level of followers. The situational leadership theory was developed by P. Hersey and Kenneth H. Blanchard. In the Blanchard SLII model, the belief is that an individual comes to a new task or role with low competence (knowledge and transferable skills) but high commitment. As the team moves through the stages of development, performance and productivity increase. The Hersey-Blanchard Situational Leadership Theory, is a leadership theory conceived by Paul Hersey, a professor who wrote a well known book Situational Leader and Ken Blanchard, author of The One Minute Manager, while working on the first edition of Management of Organizational Behavior (now in … S-3 Participating 4. Situational Leadership Theory, or the Situational Leadership Model, is a model created by Paul Hersey and Ken Blanchard, developed while working on Management of Organizational Behavior. Situational Leadership Theory of Hersey-Blanchard Explained The general belief of situational leadership theories is that leaders are products of real situations rather than gifts of nature. width="25%" align="center" | S1 New Jersey/Prentice Hall. Hersey and Blanchard continued to iterate on the original theory until 1977 when they mutually agreed to run their respective companies. Effective leadership is task-relevant, and the most successful leaders are those who adapt their leadership style to the performance readiness (ability and willingness) of the individual or group they are attempting to lead or influence. Situational leadership® is a leadership model, which has been largely influenced and molded by its early developers Ken Blanchard and Paul Hersey. Paul Hersey and Ken Blanchard designed these four styles of situational leadership on the basis of a parabola. They are able and willing to not only do the task, but to take responsibility for the task. The situational theory of leadership suggests that no single leadership style is best. This leadership style may also be referred to as "Situational Leadership Theory" or the "Situational Leadership Model" and was originated by Ken Blanchard and Paul Hersey during the development of the book, Management of Organizational Behavior. In the opposite direction on the horizontal axis the directive behavior from low to high is indicated. [9][10] To determine the validity of the prescriptions suggested by the Hersey and Blanchard approach, Vecchio (1987)[10] conducted a study of more than 300 high school teachers and their principals. Situational leadership is based more on meeting an exact need, at the moment, then an approach which looks toward the long-term needs of a team. Finally, the individual moves to development level 4 where competence and commitment are high. The problem, however, is that they are unwilling to do so. This is because the leader believes that the follower is capable enough of achieving the required tasks largely independently. Because of this, Blanchard decided to label this follower style with D1, as it is likely to be the first stage of a follower’s development. Hersey, P. and Blanchard, K.H. The titles for three of these styles differ depending on which version of the model is used . Effective leaders need to be flexible, and must adapt themselves according to the situation. Individuals are more able to do the task; however, they are demotivated for this job or task. Levels of Strategy: Corporate, Business and Functional Strategy, Hersey and Blanchard’s Situational Leadership Model, Fiedler’s Contingency Model of Leadership, How to Solve a Profitability Case Interview, How to Solve a Market Entry Case Interview, Fiedler’s Contingency Model of Leader-Situation Matches, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Situational_leadership_theory, Fiedler’s Contingency Model of Leadership: Matching the Leader to the Situation, Three Levels of Strategy: Corporate Strategy, Business Strategy and Functional Strategy, Hersey and Blanchard Situational Leadership Model: Adapting the Leadership Style to the Follower, Blake and Mouton Managerial Grid: A Behavioural Approach towards Management and Leadership, Crossing the Chasm in the Technology Adoption Life Cycle, Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Make the Competition Irrelevant. In their original theory, Blanchard and Hersey (1977) distinguished different styles of leadership and several maturity levels. THE place that brings real life business, management and strategy to you. On the contrary, leadership styles should be adapted to the context. Hersey’s personal website on The Situational Leadership Model: Blanchard’s personal website on Situational Leadership II. [4], The situational leadership II (SLII) model acknowledged the existing research of the situational leadership theory and revised the concepts based on feedback from clients, practicing managers, and the work of several leading researchers in the field of group development. The situational leadership theory is a model for leadership developed by Paul Hersey and Kenneth Blanchard. They are novice but enthusiastic. S-2 Selling 3. Based on these different follower styles, leaders should adapt their leadership style in such a way that it meets the needs of their subordinates. Blanchard, on the other hand, believes that this style should be used for D1 followers who are highly ‘Enthousiastic Beginners‘. Hersey and Blanchard's model is considered as part of the larger Situational and Contingency Theories of Leadership of which Fiedler's Contingency Mo… Moreover, they are either unwilling to deliver the required task or lack self-confidence. '", In order to make an effective cycle, a leader needs to motivate followers properly by adjusting their leadership style to the development level of the person. This is important because the leader believes that the follower (R1) either does not know what to do or is unwilling and requires therefore a certain degree of coercive power. Key Takeaways The Hersey-Blanchard Model suggests no leadership style is better than another. Figure 2: Hersey’s version of The Situational Leadership Model (Left) versus Blanchard’s version of Situational Leadership II (Right). ! The article served as a foundation for the future development of Situational Leadership®, as well as the core of what would become the best-selling organizational behavior text of all time: “Management of Organizational Behavior” (M.O.B. The fundamental underpinning of the situational leadership theory is that there is no single "best" style of leadership. The leader can further encourage autonomy, while keeping an eye on not overloading the follower with responsibility and not withdrawing completely from the follower’s proximity. The appropriate level of this relationship-focused approach is just like the directive behaviour determined by the readiness or development level of followers. It is a model created by Paul Hersey and Ken Blanchard and the theory was first introduced in 1969 as "life cycle theory of leadership. Hersey and Blanchard Situational Leadership Model, Follower’s Psychological Readiness (Psychological Development), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window), Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window), Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window). Blanchard decided to call his version of the model The Situational Leadership II Model (or SLII Model). The reason behind this choice is that Blanchard views this follower style as the second stage in a follower’s evolutionary development. Hersey-Blanchard situational leadership theory is that they are able and willing to not only do task... Of Readiness as followers are likely to ‘ grow ’ in their abilities throughout time required. And they are demotivated for this, Blanchard used the term competence meaning... 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