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Task-Oriented Leadership

Key Idea

  Task oriented leaders are often compared to relational leaders. The stereotype of a task-oriented leader is that he or she focuses more on the task at hand, ignoring or minimizing the importance of developing relationships with the members of their group. These types of leaders are often perceived as cold or distant to their followers. 

Book to Read

The Handbook of Leadership by Bass & Stogdill (1990), p. 473-511.

Quick Take from the Article

Some of the common characteristics of a task-oriented leader include:

  • More prevalent among males than females
  • A strong correlation between level of education and task-oriented behaviors
  • More common among first-born children 

Quote of Note

“The good performance of subordinates appears to increase the leaders’ tendencies to be relations oriented” –The Handbook of Leadership P. 476.


Related Terms: Autocratic Leadership, Directive Leadership


Return to List of Leadership Styles