Home Computer Science Safety at the sharp end a guide to non-technical skills
Use of authority and assertiveness
this refers to the ability to create a proper challenge and response atmosphere, by balancing assertiveness and team member participation and being prepared to take decisive action if required by the situation. the leader must also know when to apply his or her authority to achieve safe task completion.
Providing and maintaining standards
this relates to compliance with essential standards, e.g. standard operating procedures (Sops and others) for task completion, as well as supervision and intervention that may be required due to deviations from standards by other team members.
Planning and prioritising
This element describes how leaders apply appropriate methods of planning and prioritising for organised task management and delegation to achieve the best performance. this also involves co-ordination by communicating plans and intentions.
Managing workload and resources
Leaders must manage not only their own workload and resources but also that of the team. this involves understanding the basic contributors to workload and developing the skills of organising task-sharing to avoid workload peaks and dips. Causes of high workload include unrealistic deadlines and under-resources.
there are a number of different accounts of the skills required by leaders and these can differ depending on whether they are derived from research with military, industry or elsewhere. Several versions are presented below. For instance, Zaccaro et al. (2001) suggest that leadership aspects that affect team performance include:
Flin’s (1996) study of incident commanders showed that the most effective leaders:
Leaders carry a great deal of responsibility for ensuring that their team achieves its goals and one aspect of this is to solve complex problems. Salas et al. (2004) proposed four dimensions of a team leader’s behaviours for problem-solving (see Table 6.2).
Table 6.2 Team leader problem-solving behaviours (Salas et al., 2004)
These behaviours show what needs to be done to encourage adaptive team performance, and it was suggested that this can be applied in any team context.
In summary, skilled leadership may be required to handle a range of situations and depends on a number of different skills and competencies discussed elsewhere in this book, such as decision-making, communication, teamwork and situation awareness. Situational demands affect how a leader can perform or is viewed. Different tasks may require different leader characteristics and/or behaviours. Thus the context or organisational factors can support or frustrate a leader’s behaviours and actions. The next section describes various leadership theories that have attempted to explain leadership effectiveness.
|< Prev||CONTENTS||Next >|