Successful teams don’t just happen - they are built by impactful and intentional leaders.
And intentional and impactful leaders are people who know themselves - their own personality, their strengths, and their areas for growth. One great way to get in touch with these important internal aspects of yourself is to understand your leadership style.
Knowing your leadership style can help you become a better leader. Here are just a few reasons why knowing your leadership style, or leadership type, is so vital.
Through our lives we have our own unique experiences, our own individually developed minds, and different types of information available to us - this impacts how we perceive the world and, therefore, how we make decisions, treat others, and lead. Knowing your leadership style helps you understand your perceptions of the world and can open you up to learning about other perspectives.
Your leadership style serves as a compass directing your decision-making process. Whether you naturally lean towards a direct, hands off, or coaching approach, recognizing your style enables you to align your choices with your inherent strengths and values. This self-awareness allows you to review decisions through different lenses - leading you to the best results.
Knowing your leadership style is just like holding a roadmap for personal growth. It unveils areas where improvements or adjustments can be made, allowing for opportunities for intentional growth. By acknowledging both strengths and weaknesses within your style, you pave the way for continuous learning and refinement, ultimately evolving into a more effective and adaptable leader.
Effective communication lies at the heart of successful leadership. Being cognizant of your leadership style aids in refining your communication methods to resonate better with different personalities and preferences within your team. This heightened understanding fosters clearer, more empathetic, and persuasive communication, driving better collaboration and results.
While there are a numerous number of leadership assessments out there, there’s only one specifically for early childhood education directors: The Leadership Edge is designed for ECE leaders by ECE leaders and covers five (5) leadership styles:
RINGLEADER: The Visionary
This person is pioneering, creative, and is highly dynamic. They can see the big picture and put the right people in the right place to bring it to fruition. But beware - this leader's natural gift for seeing the big picture can lead them to missing vital steps.
MAESTRO: The Systematic Leader
They know what needs to get done and they will do it well. They put a lot of thought and consideration into their work and it shows. The challenge comes in when they have to learn to trust others through delegation.
COACH: The Encourager
The coach is curious, compassionate, and is highly strategic. They believe in their team and will help them reach their dreams. This leader instills self esteem and determination in everyone on their team. But because they are so focused on the needs of the day and getting people to move forward on their goals they might have a hard time managing their time.
CAPTAIN: The Direct Leader
This leader has all the information ready and processes prepared. They are ready to take on any challenge that might come their way. This leader knows their expectations and wants tasks completed exactly as they communicated. This leader's lack of flexibility can be frustrating to staff.
ENCHANTER: The Thoughtful Leader
They value the people in your program and are an expert at creating community wherever they go. Highly diplomatic and thoughtful, this leader is loved by many. But their dedication to trying to please everyone can lead to slow decision making and staff frustration.
While all of these leaders have strengths and areas of growth - they all can positively impact a team if they know themselves well enough.
Knowing your leadership style is a pivotal step in your personal professional development, and becoming the most effective leader for your team.
The CCC leadership assessment, The Leadership Edge, helps you define your natural strengths, your edge, and highlights some of the areas of growth you may need. Take the quiz today and embrace the journey of discovering and understanding your leadership style; it will undoubtedly pave the way for profound growth and impactful leadership!
Please note: here at Famly we love sharing creative activities for you to try with the children at your setting, but you know them best. Take the time to consider adaptions you might need to make so these activities are accessible and developmentally appropriate for the children you work with. Just as you ordinarily would, conduct risk assessments for your children and your setting before undertaking new activities, and ensure you and your staff are following your own health and safety guidelines.