Adair Leadership Model
John Adair developed this simple but powerful and widely used model when he was senior lecturer in military history and adviser in leadership training at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. It has since been used widely internationally in leadership development and training.
The Adair model describes leadership as the balancing of the three elements depicted above as overlapping circles. They are:
The Task Needs
The work that the team leader needs to carry out to ensure that the task gets done satisfactorily. Key words are:
- objectives, constraints,
- resources, planning, standards,
- priorities, progress.
The Needs of the Team or Group itself
The need to develop and maintain working relationships amongst team members so that the task can be accomplished. Key words are:
- team-working, morale and team-spirit, motivation
- coordination, cooperation,
- climate of the group, discipline,
- conflict resolution, roles, feedback.
The Needs of each Individual.
Each team member also has their own needs, pressures and ideas, and is also usually a member of other groups (their family, section, profession) who also have their own needs to fulfil. Key words are:
- support, coach and develop,
- recognition, praise,
- responsibility, delegate.
He emphasises the importance of distinguishing the individual from the group. There will seldom, if ever, be a perfect match between the needs of the individual, the group and the task. The leaderís job is to be aware of the tension and to manage it. The key to success lies in the leader achieving and maintaining the appropriate balance for the particular group that they are leading, and resisting the urge to focus on those areas that they personally feel most at home with.
The following assessment checklist has been used by some leaders with their groups.
TASK: Did the leader:
GROUP: Did the leader:
INDIVIDUAL: did the leader: