Leadership and followership
Leadership and followership

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6 Assessing your own leadership style

Are you an autocratic leader or do you prefer the transformational style? Are you facing significant change within your organisation and feeling drawn to the adaptive or strategic approach?

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Figure 8 What is your leadership style?

Activity 6 will start your thinking. There are no right or wrong answers. Many experts conclude that your leadership style is not fixed, and that you are able to adapt and develop it as your career progresses.

Activity 6 How do you lead?

Timing: Allow about 10 minutes

In the box below, write three words that you feel describe your leadership style.

If you need inspiration, consider if someone was observing you in a leadership role, what would you want them to see, hear and feel?

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Are you happy with your current style? Would an observer see different elements to the ones you outlined? Would you like to make any changes to your leadership style?

Experts agree that you can change your leadership style. You can learn different skills and behaviours, implement elements of the models outlined here and in the wider literature, or choose a style that inspires you and work towards developing that.

There are many online tools available that will help you to analyse your leadership style. They are not designed to give you a definitive outcome, but reflect your preferences for different styles and approaches. In Activity 7, some tools are suggested.

Activity 7 Leadership style questionnaires

Timing: Allow about 1 hour

Investigate some of the online leadership tools available. Choose one from the list given or find something else that you like the look of. If you use a tool that isn’t on this list, please do make sure there is no charge for the assessment. Do the test and use the box below to summarise your results.

Skills You Need: What sort of leader are you? [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)]

University of Kent Careers: Leadership style questionnaire

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You can refer to this summary when you start your own leadership skills audit in Week 3.

If you are interested in exploring your style in more detail, it might be worth investing in a copy of Leadership Theory and Practice by Peter Northouse. This publication covers a different leadership style in every chapter, and includes a relevant leadership style questionnaire for each.

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