No two people are alike, so why would you try to manage everyone the same way? There’s a form of leadership called Dynamic Leadership (you might also hear it referred to as Adaptive Leadership). At its core, it is a form of management in which leaders take on the process of adaptation—specifically, its principles encourage employee engagement to help the organization adapt to its environment. A dynamic leader knows how to easily adjust their form of leadership based on those they are leading and the situation surrounding them.
This responsive and responsible form of leadership works well between generations. Some may say today’s generation feels entitled or yesterday’s is too old-school. Dynamic leadership acknowledges these differences, bridging generational and cultural gaps, and draws on the experience and expertise of employees to contribute to the organization’s survival. It’s considered a dynamic approach because it’s a system characterized by constant change.
- Mentors employees to help them grow and succeed within the organization
- At the forefront of change within the organization; helps lead the change
- Relies on delegation and shows trust in their direct reports
- Understands when to be hands-on and when to be hands-off with direct reports
- Facilitates new activities
How do we understand how each individual should be managed to maximize effectiveness? Many resources are available to help us assess the personality traits of each employee. My recommendation is to speak to your human resources department regarding your options. I used a DISC profile. This assessment tool is categorized into quadrants (dominance, influence, steadiness, and conscientiousness) and determines a person’s behavioral style, tendencies, and preferences. A DISC profile allows leaders to understand what makes their team members tick—how they learn, communicate, and focus.
By taking the time to understand how each individual works, you can adapt your responses specifically to those you’re speaking to depending on their DISC style. Identifying someone’s core traits and encouraging a balance of attitudes among direct reports could also help set them up for success within the organization.
The best way to assess your dynamic leadership is to look at the people you have developed. The measure of a true leader is in the amount of leaders that have developed under one’s leadership. Have your direct reports advanced their careers, been promoted rapidly through the organization, or improved in their current role? The goal here is to lead, not boss. Put your direct reports in the best position for success by understanding and exploiting their strengths. Another way to assess your own leadership skills is by welcoming feedback from those under your leadership. Keeping open lines of communication not only allows you to help them improve, but is a way for you to see areas where you could improve as well.
Some are born leaders while others have to learn the skills of leadership. Becoming a dynamic leader will provide you with a strong foundation to develop people within your organization. Understand that this style might go against your comfort level. It will require you to adapt to personalities that are polar opposite to yours. Your style of correction might be harsher than necessary for one person. Others respond to an even harsher corrective style. Just remember, the goal is to develop those around you, as success is not measured by an individual, but the whole. This adaptive style of leadership will be the key.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Shane is the OEM Sales Manager for Onspot of North America. He has five years of industry experience. Shane received an MBA from Walden University and a Bachelors from Pennsylvania State University. Shane enjoys spending quality time with his family and playing golf on the weekends. Contact Shane at firstname.lastname@example.org.