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BlogDefining Effective Leadership in The 21st Century

21st September 20150

Watch the video below “Terri Levine Defining Effective Leadership in The 21st Century”

Click below if you prefer to listen to the audio.


What Is Effective Leadership Today?

Leadership has changed a lot and there are new methods that determine effective leadership in this century.  When mentoring businesses and working with CEO’s I have learned not to take for granted that they know, understand, or use effective leadership skills.  I always begin by having them agree that the command and control leadership styles of the past era are long gone and management is dead.  I show them study after study to prove that you can’t manage people; you can only manage things or behaviors.  I then share the coaching methodology instead.  We now know that coaching is how to create effective change in organizations and within the people of those organizations.   Next I need to work with the organization to help them see how to create the best possible leaders. The journey of mentoring businesses and CEO’s always begins with a look at what effective leadership is and is not. I’ll now take you on that same journey so you can become a better leader today.


Leadership Styles

Let’s begin by defining the term “leader”. Leaders are typically big thinkers who have creative ideas and who can run with those ideas.  They may not always hold management positions and can be at any level of an organization.  Unlike the old command and control military style of managing great companies recognize that leaders can be cultivated from all positions of their organizations.  Tom Peters said, “Leaders don’t create followers, they create more leaders”.  So what leadership styles enhance an organization?


While there are many traits of leaders the most effective leaders can change their styles based upon what is necessary to achieve success. Leadership expert Daniel Goleman says that, based upon his research, a manager’s leadership style is directly related to a company’s bottom-line profits. Goleman uncovered these six leadership styles:

  1. Pacesetting leader – this leader is determined to get fast results and expects people to be self-directed
  2. Authoritative leader – this leader drives the team to a common vision and strives to get to end goals
  3. Affiliative leader –  this leader is all about people and creating emotional connections and bonding of a team
  4. Coaching leader – the coaching leader develops people and focuses on the strengths of each team member
  5. Coercive leader – this leader is demanding that people follow what the leader says and wants compliance
  6. Democratic leader – this leader builds their team by getting input from members and having people buy into the game plan and participating in creation of ideas for the game plan

A great leader uses these different leadership styles in various situations and to achieve different goals and can shift their style when necessary.


Emotional Intelligence and Leadership

What is emotional intelligence?  John D. Mayer and Peter Salovey coined the term emotional intelligence in 1990 and Mayer defines it as, “… emotional intelligence is the ability to accurately perceive your own and others’ emotions; to understand the signals that emotions send about relationships; and to manage your own and others’ emotions…”.

About a decade after the term was introduced Daniel Goleman, a Rutgers psychologist, brought light to how emotional intelligence played a huge and important role to business leadership.  His research showed that emotional intelligence is more important than the best training or an analytical mind or brilliant ideas.  Without emotional intelligence you can’t have be a great leader, according to Daniel Goleman.

There is still confusion as to what emotional intelligence is defined as.  To be clear it is not related to personality traits. Personal qualities such as motivation, happiness, optimism and others have nothing to do with emotional intelligence.  Prior to the term emotional intelligence psychologists had defined intelligence based solely on cognitive skills like problem solving and memory. Emotional intelligence takes into account non-intellective abilities to predict one’s ability to be an effective leader and to succeed in business and life.  Cognitive skills and abilities are added to the mix of general intelligence by psychologists who have studied or embraced the concept of emotional intelligence. My experience and readings have shown me that intelligent behavior, in leadership and in life, includes not only intellective factors it also includes interpersonal intelligences.

Effective leaders establish trust, rapport, respect and other traits that leads to better communication.  They have high interpersonal skills and are sensitive to others.  Salovey and Mayer described emotional intelligence as “a form of social intelligence that involves the ability to monitor one’s own and others’ feelings and emotions, to discriminate among them, and to use this information to guide one’s thinking and action” . They, like Goleman, understood that traditional tests of cognitive intelligence did not determine what it takes to be successful in life or as an effective leader.  IQ alone is not the predictor of job performance.   In fact social and emotional factors and non-cognitive abilities actually have been proven to help improve cognitive function. There is a wealth of research that shows that social and emotional ability can determine personal and business success.

If you are a leader who can manage feelings and who deals well with stress you have two strong emotional intelligence sills needed for success.  Knowing when and how to express your emotions and having empathy have also been determined to be key factors that leaders need and are needed for effective leadership.  These abilities are important to be successful in life and also have been determined to be necessary to be an effective leader in the 21st century.

positive team

Effective Leadership Summarized

The most effective leaders have behavioral flexibility and can adjust their leadership styles as needed. They have high emotional intelligence and they lead with social and emotional competencies and have access to cognitive, emotional, and physical resources. If you want to be the best leader in the 21st century it is important to know how and when to use various leadership styles and to become emotionally intelligent. Successful leaders will use their emotional intelligence to foster productivity and psychological well-being in the workplace and will expertly flow between leadership styles depending on the people involved, results to be achieved and the situation.

Emotional Intelligence And Guerrilla Marketing

The most successful marketers know that developing genuine, authentic and trusting relationships are they cornerstones of marketing. They look for prospects and fusion partners who share similar values. They have emotional intelligence and they use their emotional skills to create long-term relationships.  Guerrilla marketers not only recognize and deal with their own emotions they also are in tune with the emotions of others and display behavioral flexibility as well as know how to work with the emotions of others.

Guerrilla’s are effective leaders and marketers because they are emotionally intelligent. They understand human behavior and use creativity and unconventional marketing to attract their ideal prospects, convert those prospects to paying customers and then retain those customers long-term.

Don’t ever forget that your marketing team is part of your leadership team. Having guerrilla’s on board who have emotional intelligent marketing skills can bring you the tactics necessary to attract large audiences to your products and services using low and no-cost strategies.  Guerrilla’s will understand consumers and their behaviors and because of their ability to be emotionally connected to consumers their marketing messages will land and resonate with prospects.


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