Situation Approach - Leadership

The Evolution of Leadership in the Twenty-First Century

The art and practice of leadership have evolved dramatically in the twenty-first century. The situational leadership approach is defined as a leadership theory or model that supports the benefits of combining a variety of managerial practices to accommodate diverse people working in the same organization. Situational leadership, according to Graeff (2013), is centered on the application of leadership styles to a specific situation and includes both directive and supportive elements. Leadership styles are used in a scenario to provide direction, create goals, and achieve objectives (Northouse, 2015). In terms of dimension, on the other hand, it assists workers in feeling at ease and developing successful communication tactics. Examples of situational leadership entail; coaching, directing, delegating and supporting styles.

The Focus of Situational Leadership

The primary focus of situational leadership is competence and commitment of the people. According to the provided case scenario, Tim Ferriss explains how he was afraid of swimming after his first attempt (Northouse, 2015). However, applying the situation leadership approach, he diagnosed the situation (identified his developmental level), and later adapted to the style, which in turn meant he adapted swimming and become a great swimmer (Ferriss, N.d.). Situational leadership possess a number of merits. These include; it provides with a practical way of practicing the learnt ideas, it’s a perfect model for employee training, and also highlights DOS, and Don’ts in giving situation within the workplace (Graeff, 2013). However, on the other side, the approach lacks firm empirical foundation. Nevertheless the approach is well applied in consulting practices.


Northouse, P. G. (2015). Leadership: Theory and Practice, 7th Edition (7th Ed.). SAGE publication, Inc.

Ferriss, T. (N.d.). Smash fear, learn anything. Retrieved August 30, 2017, from

Graeff, C. L. (2013). The Situational Leadership Theory: A Critical View. Academy Of Management Review, 8(2), 285-291

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