What Does a Visionary Leader Act Like – 7 Styles of a Visionary
When you think of a visionary leader, what or who comes to mind? You could point out some of the most creative thinkers of the modern times like Steve Jobs or Elon Musk. In fact, they might have inspired this style of leadership. Over the years, there are many styles of leadership that have emerged but none as compelling or as revolutionary as the visionary leadership style.
Many would agree that this particular style of leadership is vital for organizations to thrive and achieve long-term success. But how exactly do they achieve that?
What is a Visionary Leadership Style?
It was Daniel Goleman, in his book “Primal Leadership: Learning to Lead with Emotional Intelligence,” who popularized the concept of adopting various leadership styles. In this book, he identifies six leadership styles and visionary is one of them. According to him, the most effective form of leadership must possess all six styles.
However, the visionary leadership style is the one that has seen tremendous amounts of adaptation and success by organizations of different kinds. According to Goleman, this style of leadership is most effective when blazing new paths. This is most effective in settings wherein creativity, innovation, and experimentation are allowed to thrive.
Visionary leaders are ones with a compelling vision for their business. They are fuelled by their own inspiration and are willing to chart a new course for the future of their organization.
In doing so, they inspire the members of their team to adopt that same vision. But at the same time, they provide their subordinates the freedom to carve their own path to realize this shared vision. They do not dictate or seek control.
Visionary Leadership Style: Key Attributes
These are the 7 defining attributes that make visionary leaders different from the others:
A visionary leader believes that having a shared goal will increase your odds at success. This is why visionary leaders do not work alone. Instead, they inspire the members of their team to adopt the same goal.
Your goal is to ignite the same passion within every member of your team. Having this shared goal will drive their emotions toward the right direction – towards achieving your goal. It will light the fire in everyone to give it their best and to support one another.
With inspiration comes the desire to innovate.
Visionary leaders are not afraid to think outside the box. Since they are naturally creative thinkers, their minds are always wandering with possibilities about how they can realize a vision that some people might not have.
And yet, they are not afraid to speak their minds or be different from others. In fact, being different and doing something that others have not done before is what drives them to innovate some more.
The best part is that visionary leaders inspire others to think outside the box as well.
The desire to innovate comes with it a sense of open-mindedness. When you are open to new possibilities, your mind is not limited in terms of what it can achieve. This is the mindset that visionary leaders possess.
They do not limit their perspective to one; they love to explore different mindsets and perspectives. Their ability to see the big picture also means they are highly flexible and adaptable.
They do not let any setbacks stop them in their tracks. They are not afraid to carve out a new path in areas where one does not exist.
Visionary leaders are team players. This is what sets them apart from other types of leaders. The visionary leadership style is all about getting each member of the team involved. This type of leader likes to bring out the best in every member of the team.
Visionary leaders know that they cannot achieve a vision on their own. They need to rely on the help of their subordinates.
Therefore, they work on putting together a talented team with each member having a vital role to play. It is their goal to harness every skill or gift that others possess.
In doing so, they foster an open environment wherein everyone is free to learn and use their skills to their fullest potential.
You can identify a visionary leader just by talking to one. Their energy is magnetic; you feel inspired just by talking to them or listening to them speak.
This is why visionary leaders experience a lot of success. They are about making others feel included. They invite you to aspire to make your own vision. This is why many young and talented individuals are drawn to these types of leaders. They exude a lot of passion in what they do, and that can be very infectious.
Visionary leaders foster an innovative culture within their organization.
6. Emotionally Aware
Visionary leaders establish an emotional connection with their subordinates. They are not distant; instead, they cultivate relationships on a personal – not just professional – level.
This empathy towards their employees or members of the team makes them feel valued. By recognizing the contributions that your subordinates make to an organization, you will find they repay that trust and recognition with more effort and commitment.
Visionary leaders have a laser focused attention towards their goal. The moment they set a goal, they utilize their time and resources towards achieving that. They are resolute enough to not let anything get in their way of achieving that goal.
Their optimism helps them to succeed in any situation. They do not dwell on the difficulties and challenges of the task; instead, they are inspired by them to work even harder.
Why Is This Leadership Style Important?
All organizations go through a period of constant change and uncertainty, especially as you try to grow your business. However, the visionary leadership style can help you overcome these challenges by remaining focused on the task at hand and having a clear vision of your end goal.
By holding that vision of your goal, you facilitate commitment from every member of your team. You can also use your visionary leadership to inspire everyone to rally towards your common goal. The ability to align every member of your team towards a shared vision will give you a competitive edge in the market.