The other common name of Hersey Blanchard’s theory is situational leadership theory which draws out major points and views from contingency theories and its style of thinking. The title itself states that leadership upon the given situation and a single leadership style cannot be termed as the best form style. Therefore Hersey and Blanchard, assigns different tasks and each task may result in the display of a versatile leadership style. Good leaders have the ability to adopt principles that is perfect to achieve the desired goals. Various factors that determine a successful leader are setting up of a goal, taking responsibility, right education and lastly experience. The leadership style is not only the most important thing in determining a successful leader but also the maturity and understanding of the leader who is assigned to lead a given situation.

Hersey and Blanchard’s theory mainly has two pillars which include the leadership style and the understanding of the leader assigned to lead. Some of the basic leadership styles come from the roots as designated below.

  • Telling
  • Selling
  • Participating
  • Delegating

Given leadership styles are manifested with the behavior in relation to the task and also the behavior in relation with the group Now let’s talk about the above leadership styles. In the selling form of leadership style the leader does his best to convince the team that the leader who is leading the team should be supported with social and emotional support to each and every individual. There is always a two side communication but there’s no doubt in the leader that’s leading. Let’s move on to participation. The participating behavior is a behavior in which the leader assigns and shares his/her decision to the team. There is more emphasis on building human relation rather than accomplishing goals. The next one is delegating, which is means how the leader parcels task to his team members.

Some of the maturity levels of a group as stated by Hersey and Blanchard are given below:

  • Incompetence or unwillingness while performing a task.
  • Inabilities while doing a task but trying to do so
  • Ability to do the task but thinking that they cannot
  • All team members are ready and willing to do the task

In Hersey and Blanchard’s theory the ability level and the willingness to work can be produced by a leader by raising all expectation levels. Some of them are given below:

  • Less competent and commitment
  • Less competent and high commitments
  • Higher competence and lower commitments
  • Highly competent along with their commitments

Learn about various theories of Leadership Strategies

Important topics related leadership strategies

Fiedler's Contingency Model

Hersey and Blanchard's situational theory

Leader Member Exchange Theory

Path Goal Theory