Like any classic, Bernard Bass’s book, Leadership and Performance Beyond Expectations, remains relevant 30 years post-publication. He said leaders who transform their environment, and the people around them:
- Demonstrate integrity and fairness.
- Set clear goals that require stretch.
- Have high expectations of self and others.
- Encourage others to perform well – to be and do their best.
- Provide support.
- Recognize others for contributions and a job well done.
- Get others to consider the good of the whole.
- Captivate the heart and mind of followers and inspire them to pursue goals that seem unlikely or impossible.
- People feel good about themselves more confident and capable.
Goleman identified six leadership styles. Each style is effective when used in the appropriate situation. Four of them are especially relevant when you want to inspire new levels of performance and insure team members work well together and make the best use of the range of diversity that’s present.
The four styles include:
- The visionary style, which moves people in a new direction when change is required.
- The affiliative style helps the team navigate stressful times and heal from challenging circumstances.
- The coaching style is most effective at helping people improve their performance and strengthen or develop new skills.
- The democratic style values input from a wide range of people and works to gain consensus and build buy-in.
Effective leadership requires more than adopting one static style. No one style, no matter how comfortable you are with it, works in all situations. So don’t get too attached to one approach. Be flexible. Understand what each situation calls for and behave in ways that inspire excellence and support goal achievement.
If you’re looking to create the transformation that’s needed in your workplace, learn more about proven approaches that work. Read Goleman’s Emotional Intelligence. You’ll lead with greater confidence and competence, and get the most out of your team.