Situational leadership in Catholic schools

Joanna Marie Oliva

This article looks at the leadership theory of Situational Leadership, in particular how it is related to, and can be linked with, Christian principles.
Joanna Marie Oliva is a Professor of Theology of Assumption College, and adjunct professor of Our Lady of Angels Seminary, both in the Philippines. She is pursuing the MA in Catholic School Leadership at St Mary’s University, Twickenham.

Leadership theories seek to explain the effectiveness and value of different leadership styles. Such theories often focus on the characteristics of leaders, but some theories attempt to identify the behaviours that people can adopt to improve their own leadership abilities in different situations. There are many influential theories of leadership depending on the need and context of every institution. But there is no one perfect leadership theory.

Situational Leadership Theory is a model of leadership, which was originally studied and developed by Kenneth Blanchard and Paul Hersey (1969). It refers to the style of leadership where a leader at any level of an organisation adjusts her or his style of management and leadership according to the capabilities of the members, the context of the situation, or the urgency of the task that needs to be done. With situational leadership it is up to the leader to change her or his style and approach towards every member of the organisation or task, based on the needs of a particular situation.
Situational Leadership Theory proposes that leaders choose the best course of action based upon situational variables and context.

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