Leadership is a powerful and far-reaching concept that can have an overwhelming number of definitions and perspectives. It is said that some people are born leaders and some want nothing to do with being ‘in charge.’ Others are simply given no choice but to lead, especially in the workplace. Regardless, many in leadership positions, be they managers, supervisors or bosses, are unaware of how their leadership style impacts the team’s effectiveness.
If you are in leadership, your style is important to understand. Your leadership style can provide the special ‘something’ needed to motivate a team through challenges to successes. Developing that leadership styles goes beyond what’s taught in business school or many training programs. As a leader’s impact and reputation is a reflected in his or her team, it makes sense that the ability to develop an effective leadership style is enhanced through team building activities.
One role of a leader is as the resource for guiding and managing a team’s process, and differing leadership styles will have differing degrees of impact. Team building activities provide a venue for teams members to offer feedback and reflection on the effectiveness of a leader’s style. When facilitated well, the activities provide immediate tools for shifting or enhancing said style. Activities can provide a cooperative learning environment for leaders to see and asses their impact, and for team members to learn alongside the leader – building more trust and camaraderie.
Good team building is about the entire team – members practice communicating and functioning together with more excellence, while providing mutual support. Team leaders are given opportunities to understand the strengths and weaknesses of their styles through observation and feedback from the rest of the team.
By understanding their impact, a leader can discover and cultivate more effective behaviors and apply them within the team building simulations. These “real time” lessons, gleaned through team building, are invaluable for leadership success – and are easier to assimilate in a lower-pressure, less risk team building session (vs. the actual working environment).
To be an effective leader, it is important to observe how one’s leadership style can evolve into a new method of management that inspires creativity and innovation throughout the team. This ability ultimately gives the leader more potential to provide the guidance, motivation and inspiration that takes a team to success.