Fiedler's contingency theory states that the manner in which a leader can be effective is dependent on what he calls as 'situational contingency', or the resultant product arising out of the interspatiality or interaction of leadership style and situational favourableness (or situational control).
Fiedler holds that in situations of extreme importance, as during floods, tsunamis, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, a task-orientated style of leadership would be more beneficial than a considerate (relationship-orientated) style. This is so, as because in such an uncertain situation the leader-member relations get strained, due to fear or anxiety, the task becomes haphazard or unstructured, and the subject position of power becomes weak. In such a situation, the task-orientated leader who gets things accomplished proves to be the most successful. On the other hand, Fiedler emphasises that the considerate style of leadership is appropriate when the leader-member relations are good, the task is unstructured, and the locus of power is weak. ...
For instance, there is some doubt whether the LPC is a true measure of leadership style.
In 1986, Fiedler proposed another contingency model. This was called the Cognitive Resource Theory and attempted to analyse the conditions whereby intelligence, experience, and expertise are predictive indicators of leadership effectiveness. Fiedler stated that the effects of cognitive resources shall be significant only when the leader is able to be direct, when he/ she suffers from little stress, and when the leader has some unique expertise that cannot be performed by other subordinates. The theory formulates the idea that in low-stress situations, the intelligence of the leader has a great impact on the effectivity of the workers, and in high-stress conditions, the leader's expertise gets important. Interestingly, this assumption is not supported by Fiedler's research.
An participatory discourse of the contingency theory is Vroom and Yetton's concept of Normative decision theory. Going by this variation, effectiveness of a decision procedure in an organisation is dependent upon various parts of a situation. It emphasises on the significance of the decision quality and acceptance by the people. What is interestingly is the fact that it values the criteria such as the amount of relevant information possessed by the leader and subordinates; under what circumstances would the subordinates accept a decision or try and co-operate in following a decision and the amount of disagreement among subordinates with respect to their preferred alternatives. This variation is definitely preferred over Fiedler's assumptions simple because it takes into account a thorough circumference of problems that the idea of decision making may face. The sheer flexibility, at times