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The Four Managerial Roles - Adizes' PAEI Model

What is the ideal manager? How about the ideal managerial team? This is an incredibly different question to answer. However, Dr Ichak Adizes - founder of the Adizes Institute - created the PAEI model during the 1970s with the aim of defining all the roles required of a managerial team or the behaviours required of a well-balanced manager.

The four roles defined by Adizes were:

  1. Producer
  2. Administrator
  3. Entrepreneur
  4. Integrator

These roles can be used when trying to build a well-rounded managerial team - if you have some individuals who fill every role, the team will be effective and able to meet its objectives - but it can also be used as an individual to identify one's strengths and weaknesses and therefore isolate areas which need development. In addition to this, individuals can use the model to identify which role they best fit into best on their current skills and behavioural attributes.

Each of these four roles is discussed in detail below.

PAEI Matrix

1. Producer - Adizes' PAEI Model

  • The primary goal of any organisation or team is to achieve results. A Producer feels responsible for the finished product, which is generally designed to meet the needs and wants of stakeholders. 
  • Alongside products, "Producers" are generally tasked with meeting all the smaller goals and objectives of the organisation, ensuring that each individual achieves what is required of them. 

Characteristics of Producers: These individuals are often fast and hard workers, experienced in meeting specific deadlines and requirements. They are also incredibly ambitious and often put a significant amount of pressure on their team members to meet their individual ideals. 

2. Administrator - Adizes' PAEI Model

  • Administrators are responsible not for whether a task is done; instead, they focus on how it is done. 
  • They understand and are interested in all the roles, processes and systems which underpin organisational function and ensure that all team members are following these. If organisations do not have existing systems, Administrators may be tasked with producing them. 

Characteristics of Administrators: They are highly analytical individuals, often taking a slow and methodical approach to decision-making and problem-solving to ensure that the final outcome is efficient and effective. Subsequently, these individuals can often be found in highly analytical jobs which involve lots of information and processes, including those within finance.

3. Entrepreneur - Adizes' PAEI Model

  • Entrepreneurs are the visionaries of the organisation, seeing things on a global scale, rather than looking inwards towards the current state of the organisation and leading towards what it can be. 
  • These individuals are crucial to the overall development of organisational strategy, allowing them to stay ahead of competitors and exploit new and unique niches in the market. These individuals have a greater vision of new opportunities and threats to the organisation and are therefore important in the process of preparing for and handling any unexpected or planned changes. 

Characteristics of EntrepreneursWhereas others may follow processes and systems when handling issues, problem-solving and decision-making, Entrepreneurs take a less structured approach, trialling new ideas and suggestions. They are incredibly optimistic about what is possible, often taking calculated risks which can take the organisation or team to the next level through new ideas innovation. They are often found in important Leadership and Management roles as the visionaries of an organisation, developing strategy, but also in marketing or research teams.

4. Integrator - Adizes' PAEI Model

  • Integrators are the glue that binds teams and organisations, ensuring that all the cogs remain synchronised towards the same goal. 
  • They are great at building relationships and bringing individuals together with several different skill-sets and personalities. Alike Entrepreneurs, Integrators are fairly unstructured in their working methods, applying themselves slowly to the task as they are more concerned with the process, rather than the end results. 
  • Because of their ability to influence individuals toward their cause, they are often useful in developing or changing the culture of a team, or even an organisation. 

Characteristics of Integrators: These individuals are skilled communicators, with a high degree of self-awareness and emotional intelligence which they use to facilitate the harmonisation of different individuals and groups. As leaders, they operate with a high degree of integrity and openness which builds trust and understanding within the team. They are often associated with Servant Leadership as they are openly willing to work in a way that aids specific team members.

Applying the PAEI Model to Leadership in Practice

Developing a Team Using the PAEI Model

In Adizes' view, a team or leadership requires a balance of the four different styles in order to be truly successful. Therefore, this framework can be handy when one is trying to develop a team, as it can be used to identify areas in which the organisation or group is lacking and consequently recruit or train individuals to fill these gaps based on their personality, attributes and behaviours - Diversity is always beneficial to organisational progress.

Using the PAEI Model as an Individual 

As an individual, you may find it useful to rank your personal traits and behaviours and use them to identify which of the four styles you most closely associated with and the areas in which you are lacking as an individual. Once you have done this, you can design yourself a personal development plan in order to fill these gaps, or also surround yourself with others who complement your skill-set.

When doing so, one should always consider self-improvement and recruitment alongside the culture, values, beliefs and objectives of the organisation. Teams should always be built in such a way that they align themselves with organisational direction. However, if you find that your individual, or team, traits and goals do not align with the organisational culture, it is also sometimes possible that this can be reconsidered in order to match your group.