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Blake and Mouton Leadership Grid

Blake and Mouton studied leadership behavior and described two extremes of leadership concern:

Concern for Production: The leader cares little about people and operates in fear of something going wrong. This person's focus is on achieving results and productivity.

Concern for People: This leader cares little about productivity and operates wholly from a desire to be loved and approved.

The grid, shown below, that Blake and Mouton created from these two dimensions, can help you to understand your predominant style on the scale of concern for productivity and concern for people.

The scales run from 1-9 with, nine meaning a high amount of concern

Blake and Mouton Grid

The Five Styles Explained

Here's a snapshot of the five different leadership styles resulting from the grid:

(1,1) 'Impoverished' The leader applies (and expects) minimal effort and has little concern for either staff satisfaction or work targets. This is a leader who is going through the motions is indifferent, non-committal, resigned and apathetic. S/he is doing just enough to keep their job.

(1,9) 'Country Club' The leader is attentive to his/her people's needs and has developed satisfying relationships and work culture - but at the expense of achieving results. The leader is defined as agreeable, eager to help, non-confrontational, comforting and uncontroversial.

(5,5) 'Middle of the Road' (Politician)

This leader is a compromiser who wants to maintain the status quo and avoid any problems. Is aware of and wants a focus on productivity but not at the expense of the morale of his/her team.

(9,1) 'Authoritarian' The leader concentrates almost exclusively on achieving results. People are viewed as a commodity to be used to get the job done. Communication is de-emphasized and conflict is resolved by suppressing it. Leadership is controlling, demanding and over-powering.

(9,9) 'Team' The leader achieves high work performance through 'leading' his/her people to being dedicated to the organizational goals. There is a high degree of participation and teamwork, which satisfies the basic need of people to be involved and committed to their work. The leader may be characterized as open-minded, flexible and one who inspires involvement.

Cautionary note: This model could lead you to think there is one best style. Please avoid that mistake. Certain styles work extremely well in different circumstances. If your plane is crashing you'd want the captain to use a 9,1 style of leadership - which is an autocratic style in that moment. At another time a different style of leadership may be more appropriate.

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