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Protagonists of the contingency theory state that “most relationships between leaders and followers are based on authority and submission”. In this respect, Gardner (1995) stated that there should be “a sharp differentiation between the role of leaders and followers” where followers should not be mistaken for subordinates and should be “prepared to believe in the authority of leaders”. Therefore, the roles of effective followers are defined by their ability to be a resource for a leader, capability of building a relationship on their previous cognitive experience, and “provide the clay” for the transformation.

Furthermore, the leader-follower relationships occur in multiple situations and presuppose that supervisors and subordinates should know how “to shift easily from one role to the other” argued that “followers should do leadership, rather than followership”, rejecting the fact that insufficient sharpening of the followership skills leads to the suppression of effective followers and creation of conformists.

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 In this respect, effective leaders “must have a capacity of rational problem solving”, in order to address expectations of the different types of followers. In order to transform “sheep” or conformist followers, who lack “initiative and sense of responsibility”, an effective leader can share power of decision-making to encourage them to become leaders. In order to achieve organizational success with “yes people”, who have self-confidence but heavily “depend on a leader for inspiration”, a leader can use feedback-based communication to motivate them in seeing the opportunity for the development. In order to benefit from “critical and independent thinking” of “alienated followers” or passive followers, a leader can become a role model to reinforce creative and self-leading individuals. In order to accomplish timely-restrained goals with “survivors” who follow the style that minimizes risk in the situation-dependent conditions, a leader should create an environment that enables them to contribute their best.

In addition, an effective follower knows how to follow effectively, and, at the same time, exhibits leadership qualities. Additionally, leaders should create a sense of community through effective communicative processes with followers while sufficiently exercising their authority, which enables them to follow and be followed.

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