The best leadership strategies typically encourage initiative, create a common purpose, result in teamwork, and minimize friction. Many trends and fads exist in the search for leadership strategies, as this usually is a complex subject. There is no specific method that will produce the same results each time. In fact, a strategy that is very successful in one situation may have a completely different response in a different setting.
It can be important for a person to always remember that the purpose of leadership is to encourage others to contribute their best efforts toward a common goal, and to remain united in the face of adversity. The definition of good leadership usually varies depending on the culture, local expectations, and environment. This is an important point, as it can become very difficult to judge the success of different leadership strategies in other countries due to this gap in expectations.
The best leadership strategies always encourage initiative and creativity. There is a balance, however, between creativity and the structure of the organization. The initiative must be to help the organization fulfill the mission or goal. Any creativity that does not further the overall goal typically is not supportive of the organization.
Maintaining this control sounds complex, but it mostly is based on clear communication. A leader who can clearly communicate the short- and long-term goals, along with their expectations, typically will have few issues. Given clear boundaries and a mission, most people direct their energy toward furthering the overall organizational goal.
Creating a common purpose is an example of successful leadership strategies. People will come together despite personal differences or disagreements when united. The most common example of this is when people come together in the face of a shared adversity. This same result, however, usually can be achieved with a goal that requires input from everyone and represents a shared value.
The most effective leadership strategies continue to influence behavior when the leader is not present. Teamwork, group projects, and active participation are all signs of effective leadership. The ability for people to work together and meet the overall need is essential in any organization.
In any group of people, there always will be situations of friction and conflict. A strong leadership presence, however, usually provides a clear mission and behavioral guideline that minimizes this type of conflict. When everyone is aware of their responsibility and role in the process, there usually is an overall increase in productivity.