The suggested article by de Vries, Bakker-Pieper, and Oostenveld (2009) has led me to the following assumptions. First of all, the study has made me think about the importance of communication which may vary depending on the type of leadership but cannot be denied.
The idea of equating leadership to communication, as the authors suggest, is not valid for every leadership style. Still, it appears to be logical that the specifics of leadership are manifested through the type of communication the leader prefers.
Therefore, communication is not only the means of knowledge and information exchange, but it is also a leadership tool that may be used to increase the employees’ satisfaction, trust, respect, and devotion (De Vries et al., 2009, p. 371). According to the article, the possible ways of achieving this result include (but are not limited to) exhibiting assuredness, argumentativeness, lack of verbal aggressiveness, preciseness, and supportiveness (De Vries et al., 2009, p. 369).
It was especially important for me to receive a kind of scientific confirmation to the effectiveness of supportive leadership behavior (De Vries et al., 2009, p. 377). It is connected to my personal beliefs concerning leadership. Apart from that, the suggested article proves that either communication style has its positive outcomes.
While I have to admit that the human-oriented leadership is the one that appeals to me, every leadership model appears to have its advantages. For example, the positive qualities of a task-oriented leader include assuredness and preciseness (De Vries et al., 2009, p. 377). It is the latter of them that I consider especially important.
In my opinion (which is supported by personal experience) vague goals are extremely disturbing for followers and reduce the trust and respect that a leader may potentially inspire. Since I would always respect a leader who is capable of providing consistent and clear instructions, I intend to pay particular attention to the preciseness of my own communication style in future.
Taking into account the fact that different communication styles offer various opportunities, incorporating the elements of several models appears to be a promising activity. It could be useful to point out that the models suggested to us by the previous studies are complex and extensive, but there is always a limitation to them.
In my opinion the generalized ideas that describe the way people appreciate different kinds of communication or leadership may be misleading, even though they do provide useful guidelines. In the process of leadership, a variety of suggested models can be used, and their choice is determined by the specific circumstances and the characteristics of the group the leader works with.
I am not trying to diminish the importance of scientific works, but I attempt to highlight the importance of practical experience. Therefore, I assume that a leader may and should custom his or her own communication and other leadership tools to achieve better results depending on any particular circumstances. I wonder, though, if my peers would agree with me on the matter. This is the first issue I would like to suggest for the class discussion.
The second one is connected to the previous conclusion. Since the process of leadership requires customizing communication models to suit the changing environment, it also presupposes flexibility and quick thinking. At the same time, I realize that leaders must be consistent in their actions, and, therefore, there must be a limit to their flexibility. The question of balance is always a controversial one, and I would like to discuss this issue with my peers to achieve a more comprehensive conclusion.
De Vries, R., Bakker-Pieper, A., & Oostenveld, W. (2009). Leadership = Communication? The Relations of Leaders’ Communication Styles with Leadership Styles, Knowledge Sharing and Leadership Outcomes. Journal Of Business Psychology, 25(3), 367-380. doi:10.1007/s10869-009-9140-2