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How predictable is your boss’ leadership style?

2 min read


SmartPulse — our weekly nonscientific reader poll in SmartBrief on Leadership — tracks feedback from more than 150,000 business leaders. We run the poll question each Tuesday in our e-newsletter.

Last week, we asked: How predictable is your boss’s leadership style?

  • He or she is predictable most of the time but occasionally surprises me: 53%
  • I always know what to expect from my boss and how he or she leads: 22%
  • My boss is mostly unpredictable, and I have to react to his or her shifting style: 16%
  • My boss is completely unpredictable, and his or her leadership style is not clear to me: 9%

There’s a lot of uncertainty out there about how our bosses act. Only about a quarter of you can count on your boss to be totally predictable. Many of you are surprised, with varying frequency, with a quarter of you declaring your boss is mostly or completely unpredictable. Those lines of communication and consistency need to improve. The next time your boss surprises you, take it upon yourself to ask him or her the rationale behind the decision. The more views you can get into your boss’ thought process, the more predictable he or she will become for you. You might also consider sitting down with your boss and asking for expectations and how he or she likes to work. That kind of clarification will help you better understand what to expect from your boss.

Mike Figliuolo is managing director of ThoughtLeaders.