14 Powerful Leadership Styles in Project Management

Part Two: Unconventional Leadership Styles for Project Success

In the first part of this series, we discussed the foundational leadership styles commonly employed in construction project management.

If you want to read Part 1 of this series, find it here: PART 1: LEADERSHIP STYLES IN PROJECT MANAGEMENT

Now, as we delve into part two, we’re venturing into the lesser-traveled territory of leadership styles that often don’t receive the attention they deserve. These unconventional styles may hold the key to unlocking the full potential of your construction projects.

“Leaders are made, they are not born. They are made by hard effort, which is the price that all of us must pay to achieve any goal that is worthwhile.”

Vince Lombardi

Let’s continue our exploration:

Leadership Styles in Project Management (Contd.):

8. Situational Leadership

While situational leadership is not necessarily unheard of, its nuances and practical applications are often underestimated. This style emphasizes the importance of adapting your leadership approach based on the specific needs of your project and team at any given moment. In construction, where projects evolve and face various challenges, situational leadership can be a powerful tool. It requires project managers to be agile and responsive, tailoring their leadership style to match the ever-changing dynamics of the project.

9. Inclusive Leadership

Inclusive leadership goes beyond democratic leadership by placing a strong emphasis on diversity and inclusion. In a multicultural and multi-disciplinary field like construction project management, fostering an inclusive environment can be a game-changer. It not only promotes a sense of belonging and equality but also encourages a wide range of perspectives and ideas, ultimately leading to better decision-making and project outcomes.

10. Adaptive Leadership

In the realm of construction projects, adaptability is crucial. Adaptive leaders excel in navigating uncertain and rapidly changing situations. They are skilled in problem-solving, quick decision-making, and adjusting strategies on the fly. Construction projects are notorious for unforeseen challenges, and adaptive leadership equips project managers with the tools they need to stay on course, even when the waters get rough.

11. Collaborative Leadership

Construction projects are team efforts, often involving multiple stakeholders, from architects and engineers to subcontractors and laborers. Collaborative leadership focuses on uniting these diverse parties and aligning their efforts toward a common goal. It’s about breaking down silos, facilitating effective communication, and fostering a culture of collaboration. In the construction industry, where a lack of coordination can lead to costly delays and mistakes, collaborative leadership can make all the difference.

12. Ethical Leadership

Ethical leadership may seem like a given, but in a high-stakes industry like construction, it’s worth highlighting. This style places a strong emphasis on integrity, transparency, and accountability. Ethical leaders set the bar high for ethical behavior and decision-making. They not only ensure that the project adheres to ethical standards but also inspire their team to do the same. In a field where ethical lapses can lead to legal and reputational issues, ethical leadership is invaluable.

13. Agile Leadership

Agility is key in modern construction projects. Agile leaders are skilled at managing complex, fast-paced projects that require iterative planning and a willingness to adapt to change. Agile project management methodologies have gained popularity in recent years, and agile leadership complements these methodologies perfectly. It’s about embracing change, fostering flexibility, and ensuring that the project remains aligned with evolving goals.

14. Quiet Leadership

Quiet leaders lead by example and are not necessarily the most vocal members of the team. They earn respect through their dedication, reliability, and the consistent high quality of their work. In the construction industry, where actions often speak louder than words, quiet leadership can have a profound impact. It’s about demonstrating professionalism, competence, and a strong work ethic, inspiring others to follow suit.

The Art of Blending Leadership Styles

As you’ve probably noticed, the world of leadership in construction project management is incredibly diverse. While each style has its unique strengths, the real art lies in blending these styles effectively.

Project managers often find that a mix of leadership styles is necessary to tackle the multifaceted challenges they face. A successful project leader is like a skilled chef who combines various ingredients to create a masterpiece. It’s about selecting the right leadership “ingredients” for each project’s unique “recipe.”

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader.”

Quincy Adams

In this multifaceted world of construction projects, leaders must adapt and evolve. The ability to switch between leadership styles seamlessly, understanding when to be transformational, transactional, or even quiet, can be the key to consistently delivering successful projects.


In part two of our exploration into leadership styles in construction project management, we’ve ventured into the often-overlooked territory of unconventional leadership styles. Each of these styles brings unique qualities that can enhance your ability to navigate the complex landscape of construction projects.

Remember, the effectiveness of a project manager isn’t solely determined by their adherence to a single leadership style; rather, it’s their flexibility and adaptability in applying the right style at the right time.

Stay informed, stay adaptable, and always be open to the possibilities that unconventional leadership styles can offer. By doing so, you’ll be better equipped to lead your construction projects to new heights of success.

In this ever-evolving field, embracing diversity and exploring the uncharted waters of leadership styles can be your secret to staying ahead of the curve.

As a reminder from the previous Part of this article: For the complete discussion on the six common project management leadership styles and their real-world applications, refer to this article by BrightWork. Here, you’ll find valuable insights that can complement your understanding of leadership styles in project management.

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Stay Ahead of the Curve in Construction Project Management

In construction project management, staying at the forefront of industry trends and continuously seeking new insights is a hallmark of excellence. Whether you are a professional or a student passionate about project management, there’s always room for growth.

Stay tuned for more in-depth articles that shed light on the lesser-explored aspects of construction project management. By equipping yourself with a diverse toolkit of leadership styles, you’ll be well-prepared to tackle any project that comes your way.

Keep an eye out for our next articles, where we’ll continue to delve into the intricacies of construction project management, unlocking the hidden gems that can elevate your project leadership to new heights.

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