Leadership Theories Matrix

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Leadership Theories Matrix

Resources: The Art and Science of Leadership, Ch. 3 and Leadership Theories Matrix

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As a leader, you often need to display or clarify a concept. A matrix is a grid that contains information and offers a visual model of ideas. For this assignment, you will create a matrix that explains leadership theories.

Research the following five leadership theories and include these in your matrix (use the matrix template provided):

  • Trait theories of leadership
  • Behavioral theories of leadership
  • Contingency models of leadership
  • Skills approaches to leadership
  • Situational methods of leadership

Develop the definition and characteristics of various leadership theories and approaches to leadership (trait leadership, behavioral leadership, contingency leadership, skills leadership and situational leadership). 

Provide one or more examples to support the definition or characteristics of each form of leadership. 

Write out your explanations in each theory and example section; each theory and example should be at least 100 words. Be sure to include citations for definitions.


University of Phoenix Material

Theory Definition/Characteristics Examples
Trait Leadership The trait theory of leadership is typically an old assumption stating that leaders are strategically born, and due to this assumption, people having the right qualities and characteristics are best opposite to leadership. The theory is centered on the features of several leaders who are both successful and unsuccessful and thus applied in predicting leadership effectiveness (Winkler, 2010). Some of the characteristics associated with this type of leadership theory include firmness, flexibility, initiative, right knowledge regarding the business, and creativity. This type of approach is significant as it gives an informed knowledge and understanding of the leader’s element in the leadership procedure. A good example is that of the late Steve Jobs who was typically known for his charisma and his efforts to effectively tackle his visions thus made people to follow his lead.


The behavioral theory of leadership typically concentrates on the behaviors of leaders. A leader’s way of behaving is an efficient predictor of his or her leadership influences, and due to that, it is an active determinant of his or her leadership achievements. This type of leadership theory is different from the trait theory as it gives full credence to the notion that leadership can be taught and gained. And those behaviors can be conditioned thus allowing a leader to have provided feedback to specific stimuli (Winkler, 2010). Some of the characteristics of this leadership style include people who are good in observation, listening and encouraging others to perform. This type of leadership is articulated by a leader who happens to be task-oriented as this focuses on planning, coordinating and giving workers the right responsibilities.


This type of leadership theory focuses on getting to know the best match existing between a leader and a particular situation. It also figures out the manner in which a leader’s style matches the context of the situation at hand (Odumeru & Ogbonna, 2013). Therefore, effective leadership is only considered contingent when it matches a leader’s style to the appropriate setting. One of the characteristics of this type of leadership style is that the success of a leader is viewed to be a function of different contingencies like task or group of variables. Some of the examples of this type of theory incorporate the strategic contingency theory and the Fielder’s contingency theory.


This type of leadership concentrates on the skills of a person rather than the behavior and also discovers guidance about the various skills a person possesses. An Administration is typically viewed as a skill that can be acquired through learning and therefore leaders should lead via skills to motive their workers and make them do their best towards achieving the institution’s goals and objectives. The theory mentions five essential skills that are significant characteristics of leadership  (Odumeru & Ogbonna, 2013). They include competencies, leadership results, career experiences, personal attributes and surrounding influences. An excellent example of acquiring this theory is through training and adapting to the needed set of skills necessary for a leader.
Situational Leadership This is a theory of leadership that is part of a larger group of approaches referred to as contingency theories of leadership that states that a leader’s efficiency is associated with his or her traits in various conditions. The type of styles a leader applies in this theory is centered upon bringing together multiple levels of a directive and supportive characters. Characters associated with situational leadership include flexibility and simplicity in carrying out organizational duties  (Winkler, 2010). Situational leaders should also learn and exercise the four essential leadership competencies such as diagnose, adapt, effectively communicate, and advance. A leader who continually keeps an acute awareness within the business should be categorized as a situational leader.


Leadership Theories Matrix


Complete the following sections using the provided matrix template.

Develop a leadership theories matrix thatdescribes the definition and characteristics of various leadership theories and approaches to leadership (trait leadership, behavioral leadership, contingency leadership, skills leadership and situational leadership).

Provideone or more examples to support the definition or characteristics of each form of leadership.

Write out your explanations for each theory and example in designated cells; each theory and example should contain at least100 words.Be sure to include citations for definitions.





Odumeru, J. A., & Ogbonna, I. G. (2013). Transformational vs. transactional leadership theories: Evidence in literature. International Review of Management and Business Research2(2), 355.

Winkler, I. (2010). Contemporary leadership theories: Enhancing the understanding of the complexity, subjectivity and dynamic of leadership. Springer Science & Business Media.

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