The GILS Model >>Levels of Influencing  

Levels of Influencing

Interaction of Leader and Worker: unilateral Šnd multilateral

Thusfar we have described that leader and worker can fullfill tasks and solve problems when each one engages in unilateral influencing towards the other. This influencing is oriŽnted towards ways to perform the task within ex ante respected organisational or professional standards. In these cases the one with a relative higher or other taskmaturity adds knowledge and experience to the other and in doing so enables the other to perform a task better.
So in all these situations one of them knows certain elements best, is acknowledged therein by other and is then able to help and complement the other with his knowledge and experience. 

We can merge both blue and orange quadrants, thus sketching the relative complexity when both leader and co-worker interact in management reality.

This taskoriented interacting by leader Šnd worker helps realize more tasks and solve more organisational problems then when - as in many other models of leadership - only the leader has the responsability to engage in constructive influencing interaction with worker(s).  

But it must be stated that a lot of problems leader and worker wil face in daily practice can still not be solved with the mutually unilateral infuencing behavior thusfar presented. Especially the following situations are meant:

  1. when both together do'nt have the knowledge and experience to perform a (new) task and therefore have to search for new additional information and engage in creative problemsolving, and
  2. when to arrive at solutions, policys, prospects it is necessary to bring in discussion and (partly) merge fundamentally different views and perspectives

In what kind of influencing behavior leader and follower have to engage in order to generate solutions for these tasks. We introduce the following rule: "when the sum of unilateral influencing by leader and worker does not solve the task or problem adequately, it is time to interact multilaterally in order to generate viable solutions".

Multilateral influencing is interactive influencing by Leader and Worker towards each other, performed in a parallel way.
When engaged in a one-dimensional task and when both have the same relative taskmaturity not high enough to complete this task they can only invest in actions in order to get the task fullfilled. For example they can discuss starting a research on how to get the task performed an decide to go searching the internet for good practices, to interview persons with more knowlegde, to engage a qualified coach, etc.
More complex situations that demand multilateral influencing are the problems or opportunities that must be attacked from differing perspectives where each perspective brings its own merits to the situation. Then there is no one best way, but actors have to agree for best suitable solutions. Together one has to research problems with multi-dimensional characteristics, invest in surfacing relevant information, listen to different perspectives from wich one can look at problems, exchange and research possible solutions, surface the assumptions behind them in discussion, help each other test these propositions, and invest energy in optimising solutions.

Again we present both blue and orange quadrants merged, but now with a series of yellow fields connecting both quadrants in the heart-line. This yellow string of fields represents the cluster of managerial influencing behavior we do name: Multilateral Influencing.

Now look again at the resulting scheme for the Collegial Generating Domain. In resumee we say that when in this domain a leader posed before a task or problem should:

  1. scan his abilities to oversee the actions necessary to bring this task to an end
  2. scan level of competence of worker/other
  3. invest in serial unilateral interaction in order to solve the task as completely as possible
  4. when with 3 a not sufficient level of quality is reached or with problems that can not be solved from a one-dimensional level one has to engage in generative multilateral interaction.

Multilateral influencing asks for a qualityjump in managementbehavior, another (school-)level of behavior, "higher" values and an open attitude. This can only be realised through hard work and with an artfull will to be a more effective leader in person-to-person interactions with other people in organisational settings..>>>>>