Sunday, August 28, 2011

Management Theories # 28 - Action Centred Leadership

The concept of Action-Centred Leadership was created by leadership management guru John Adair whilst lecturing at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, and remains his best known work.

The Action-Centred Leadership model uses three circles to link the three key elements of leadership, the task needs, the team needs, and the individual needs, in a simple but effective tool for leadership development.

Responsibilities to the task include:

  • Define the task
  • Identify available resources
  • Formulate a plan
  • Delegate responsibility
  • Set quality standards
  • Maintain control
  • Keep to schedule
  • Report to higher authority
  • Assess progress and adjust plans as appropriate

Responsibilities to the team include:

  • Establish and communicate acceptable performance standards
  • Establish and communicate acceptable ethical standards
  • Maintain discipline and focus
  • Proactively resolve conflicts
  • Encourage team spirit
  • Motivate the team
  • Establish leadership roles within the team
  • Establish and maintain effective communication

Responsibilities to the individual include:

  • Understand individuals, their strengths, skills, personality, and needs
  • Support and assist individuals
  • Acknowledge effort and good work
  • Identify individual training needs
  • Encourage and develop individual creativity, freedom and authority

Often a leader will be operating in just one or two of the areas, the three circle model helps leaders plot exactly where they are and help develop their own leadership skills to take advantage more fully of the resources available from a whole team to get the task done.

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