Leadership Styles and Irony . . .








Below you will find a link to a chapter from the book: Handbook of organization development  By Thomas G. Cummings, Sage Publications  that looks at a comparison of four general strategies that a leader my employ. Truthfully not all leaders can effectively lead from all four strategies.  Some are ‘tellers’, others are ‘participatory’, others are really into the authority of ‘force’ and some can and do lead in ‘transformative’ ways.

I share this because I believe we, our country and the state of Michigan – need participatory and transformative leaders.  Look it over and think about what you think we need to move forward.  Also think about sharpening your participatory and transformative skills.

Here is them link to the chapter:

Below are explanations form the authors related to TIME and ACTUAL CONTROL just to answer any questions people may have about these two concepts, as Quinn and Sonenshein , the authors of the chapter, see it.

Time. The four change strategies require different time investments. The telling and forcing strategies take little time commitment. In the former strategy, the change agent simply transmits more persuasive information to the change target. In the latter strategy, the change agent simply exercises legitimate or illegitimate authority to institute change. The participating strategy takes more time investment. Establishing a win–win, participative dialogue takes much time and effort. The transforming strategy is also highly time consuming. The change agent has to go through self-reflection and then repeat the process on a regular basis.

Actual Control. The irony of the telling and forcing strategies is that although these approaches have high perceived control, they result in little actual control. Recipients of the telling strategy rarely change deeply rooted behaviors. In the forcing strategy, where perceived control appears extremely high, we damage the relationship with change targets. Consequently, as soon as monitoring ceases, compliance disappears. As we become skilled in the participating strategy, we develop an enormous sense of control in that we can turn most situations into win–win outcomes. In the transforming strategy, we have the ability to reach complete control because we are both the change agent and the target. As we reduce our hypocrisy and increase our commitment, others are free to choose their course of action.

The source for this information is: Four General Strategies for Changing Human Systems by ROBERT E. QUINN and SCOTT SONENSHEIN, page 74 through 79 from the book: from the book Handbook of organization development  By Thomas G. Cummings  Sage Publications


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