Avionics News October 2016 - 45

experiences, and they each want something different from you, such as direct
orders, helpful suggestions, or for you to
get out of the way.
So we have a basic formula: Take a
situation that calls for leadership, add
employees who want to be led, and choose
the appropriate style. In essence, you're
deciding how much control you exert to
motivating people, directing action or
making decisions. Fortunately, the more
you lead, the better you tend to be at it.
You become more adept at managing
your personal idiosyncrasies, and you
also become more skillful at choosing the
approach that best connects with your followers.

Style points
Leadership style comprises one of six
flavors. While we all have our favorites - mostly based on our personalities
- we should recognize that no effective leader relies on only one, whether
dealing with new employees, seasoned
veterans or peers.
1. Telling. As the name suggests, this
style puts the leader in charge, telling people exactly what to do. This leader makes
decisions and provides direct instruction
so he or she can address a problem, such
as a complaining customer or a workflow
backlog, where the leader picks priorities
and plans of action. But the leader also
uses this style to work with employees
to teach them new skills and tackle novel
challenges. In both cases, the leader will
explain clearly and precisely the results
desired, then follow up with feedback that
evaluates and guides performance.
2. Selling. Here, the leader is still in
charge and knows what he wants the staff
to do, but relies on a gentler touch. Indeed,
this "what if you tried it this way?"
approach is more coaching than telling,
and instead of stepping in to help a struggling staffer work through a problem, the
leader will suggest a potential solution so
the employee can work through the process on their own. Likewise, if this leader
changes plans, he or she will explain how
and why a particular decision was made so
staff can adapt and overcome. The leader

does things this way because he's not only
thinking about results, he's also building
relationships, confidence and trust.
3. Consulting. Again, the leader makes
decisions, but now there's two-way communication. He or she identifies a problem
and provides background information,
asks questions, reflects on team input, and
then transparently chooses a solution in
a role-modeling manner. The followers,
who are increasingly skillful but may still
be relatively tentative, gain a greater sense
of participation, yet they benefit from
the leader's focus on building judgment,
teamwork and independence. The leader
may also start to ask employees to evaluate their own performance based on input,
yet for this to work, they must feel they're
in a supportive work environment where
they won't be criticized for mistakes.
4. Delegating. For the first time, the
team makes its own decisions and takes
responsibility for their results. Given a

challenging situation, the leader will ask
how the group thinks it should continue,
ensures that every voice is heard, and as
long as there's consensus and no overwhelming concerns, will let the group
follow through. This is the end goal of
leadership; the group is competent and
needs minimal supervision, which means
the leader is now a resource rather than an
arbitrator or director.
5. Laissez-faire. It will be hard to
recognize the leader using this specialized style unless a situation arises where
needed. The group is competent, collegial and motivated, and it (and each
member) has both skills and ability to be
successful. This occurs when there's little
risk to the core functions of the business,
so the leader can be more organizer than
facilitator; the leader has made a deliberate choice not to lead so long as the
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avionics news

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october

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Avionics News October 2016

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Avionics News October 2016 - Intro
Avionics News October 2016 - No label
Avionics News October 2016 - Cover2
Avionics News October 2016 - 1
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Avionics News October 2016 - Cover3
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