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Can My Leadership Style Change? (#65)

The Confident Leader

Leaders who utilize one leadership style in every situation as a one-size fits all approach effectively authored the cliché, “If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” Is there another way?

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.
— Albert Einstein

This Week’s Edition

Does my leadership style change over time? Or how flexible do I need to be to adjust it to increase my effectiveness?

Clarify Your Thinking

“Robin, I’ve gotten pretty good results from my leadership, but recently I’m experiencing diminished results. My team isn’t responding like they used to. Your newsletter last week on leadership style intrigued me. My question is: does your leadership style change over time?” William asked.


“It better.” I responded. “But it won’t change on its own.”


“What do you mean?” he asked.


“Well, your leadership style is not set in stone. Your style may not fit all situations you will face. The practice of leadership is fluid, and a leader’s style may need to evolve over time. It’s time to adjust.”


The effectiveness of a static leadership style diminishes over time as situations change. Teams change. Generations change. Business climates change. Goals change. “You want to be effective in the broadest set of leadership situations!” A leader’s style has to change to meet the new leadership situations.”


Old Thinking: I guess my leadership isn’t good enough. I wonder if something is wrong with me. I’m stuck. I’ve lost my MOJO.


New Thinking: My current style is good for certain situations. It may not be effective for this situation. I may need additional leadership skills, and I need to know what other styles or approaches work for this situation.

Thoughts Lead to Actions

“Wait. I’m just now understanding the concept of a leadership style. Now you’re telling me I’ve got to adapt mine, make it fluid and evolve it over time?” William asked. “How do I do that?”


Sometimes leaders may not know how to adjust, evolve or change their style to meet the diversity of leadership situations. Absent this information, leaders resort to just trying harder or settling for mediocre performance. This is a fast track to leadership doubt.


“William, here are a few steps to considering adding more elements to your leadership style so that you can flexibly apply them across situations,” I suggested.


1.   Recognize that no one leadership style is perfect for all situations and that your style may need to be broadened.

2.   Evaluate each aspect of your leadership. See last week’s newsletter for defining your leadership style.

3.   Determine in which situations your leadership is working, not working and missing.

4.   Seek out the skills necessary to improve what’s not working and fill the gap of what leadership elements might need to be added.


William started by researching all possible leadership styles. This gave him a starting point to create an inventory of all facets of his leadership style. It also educated him on those elements he did not possess.  He chose some aspirational aspects he believed to be most authentic to his leadership and useful in future leadership situations he may encounter. 



Boost Your Performance

In the leadership cohorts that recently launched, we are spending an entire month on leadership styles. The revelations the leaders are having about how they can adapt and broaden their leadership styles are huge. Through this process, the leaders are discovering their leadership identity, a concept that decreases leadership doubt and increases leader confidence.

What’s Your Opinion?

What is your leadership style? Share it with me at

Don’t let doubt count you out. Have a confident week!

Robin Pou, Chief Advisor and Strategist

If this was helpful, feel free to share it with another leader who needs to defeat doubt and complete their confidence.

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What is “The Confident Leader”?

During the Covid-19 Pandemic, I began a video series called “Panic or Plan?” It was designed to equip leaders to navigate the doubt they experienced and to rise in the confidence they needed to lead during turbulent times. It took off. I then started this newsletter to equip leaders in the same fashion each week for the doubt that crashes across the bow of their leaderSHIP.

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