The four major classifications of leadership theory all represent a change in leadership paradigm. A leadership paradigm is a shared mindset that represents a fundamental way of thinking about, perceiving, studying, researching, and understanding leadership (p. 16).
- Leadership trait theories attempt to explain distinctive characteristics accounting for leadership effectiveness (p. 16).
- Behavioral leadership theories attempt to explain distinctive styles used by effective leaders, or to define the nature of their work (p. 16).
- Contingency leadership theories attempt to explain the appropriate leadership style based on the leader, followers, and situation (p. 17).
- Integrative leadership theories attempt to combine the trait, behavioral, and contingency theories to explain successful, influencing leader–follower relationships (p. 17).
Lussier, R. N. & Achua, C. F. (2010). Leadership: Theory, application, and skill development (4th ed.). Mason, OH: Cengage Learning.