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Posted: 02 Mar, 2021

Last week, TMA NextGen hosted a mentoring session with Adrian Doble, a qualified NLP Master, CBT Coach and hypnotherapist, who highlighted two leadership styles that, if you can master them, will set you up for life.

Thank you to Anna Nolan, of TMA NextGen London, for moderating this webinar and to everyone who joined the session. You can find the recording here 

Practical Leadership
Adrian began his session by saying that most talks about leadership tend to focus on inspirational leaders and leaders that have left a legacy such as Winston Churchill or Martin Luther King but in reality, most of us aren’t leading countries, social movements, or billion-pound companies. Most of us are leading projects and teams. So rather than discussing inspirational leadership styles, Adrian’s session focussed on practical leadership styles that are applicable to our reality.


And in reality, those of us in the restructuring and turnaround community are business people. We’re engaged by our organisations to generate profit, provide services, accomplish tasks, get things done, and moreover, keep people motivated and happy. But keeping everyone happy doesn’t necessarily come easily when you also need to get things done. That’s where Adrian thinks we can blend two leadership styles to strike the right balance between being effective and keeping your team on-side and motivated.


Two Practical Leadership Styles
In classic management theory, we learn that there are two extreme types of leaders. The laissez faire type and the autocrat type. But 99% of modern leading goes on in between these two extremes.
And while there are multiple styles of leadership, Adrian thinks that understanding the following two leadership styles, and striking a balance between them, can set you up for life.


1. Pace Setting
The pace setting leadership style, Adrian explained, is where tasks are prioritised, performance is reward based, time constrained, event driven and focuses largely on the individual or small team. Success is measured on results.

This style of leadership 'gets things done' but at its worst, can lead to frustration in teams where the success of the few is not shared with the needs of the whole team.


2. Transformational Leadership
The transformational leadership style prioritises relationships. Individuals are valued in a nurturing and intellectually stimulating environment, inclusivity is prioritised, and successes are shared.
Both these two styles of leadership have their merits but used together, they are most effective. Pace setting leadership can get things done but, showing empathy, valuing team members and sharing success leads to a different outcome where the whole organisation benefits.

Many new leaders struggle with this equation. It is all too easy to allow the transaction to take over, particularly when deadlines need to be met and the pressure is on. But it’s important not to let it take over to the detriment of relationships with team members and colleagues. Striking a balance is key to becoming a more effective leader.

To conclude his session, Adrian also showed a video where Simon Sinek talks about the qualities of a good leader: “The real job of a leader is not about being in charge, it’s about taking care of those in their charge.” If you would like to watch the video, you can find it here.


We thank Adrian for sharing his insights and hope they will prove useful for anyone looking to improve as a leader.

The Next TMA event will be a webinar on 3rd March on ‘Navigating Business Recovery’, supported by AlixPartners. Register here.

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