Leadership styles refer to the various approaches undertaken by management personnel for motivating their subordinates while trying to achieve a common goal. All the implicit and explicit actions are undertaken by the leader draws an idea from the various forms of styles of leadership. Today we are going to take a look at the three broad classifications of these approaches.
Styles of Leadership
Authoritarian or Autocratic Leadership Style
Under this form of leadership, the manager exercises supreme control over his subordinates. He is the ultimate decision maker and believes in centralization of power. All his calls are taken without considering the views of his subordinates who are coerced and commanded to follow his orders.
Such a type of manager never delegates authority to anyone and is in complete awe of the power conferred upon him. Employees who follow his orders are rewarded while the ones who deviate from the same face hefty penalties.
- Strongly motivates and satisfies the leader dictating the terms.
- Helps in quick decision making.
- Can yield positive results in scenarios requiring prompt action.
- Less competent subordinates fill up the lower levels.
- Leads to low morale, frustration and even conflict amongst subordinates.
- Complete potential and creative flair of employees remain unutilized.
- Subordinates often tend to evade responsibility.
- Employees do not get an opportunity for development which in turn threatens the continuity of the business in the absence of a leader.
Browse more Topics under Leadership And Management
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- Leadership Continuum
- Likert’s System of Management
- Contingency Approach to Leadership
- Leadership Effectiveness
- Measures for Developing Leadership Ability of Managers
- Importance of Motivation
- McGregor’s Model of Motivation
- Maslow’s Model
- Herzberg’s Model
Participative or Democratic Style Of Leadership
Such a type of manager pays supreme importance to his subordinates by encouraging their participation in the decision-making process. He believes in the decentralization of power and proceeds with a particular decision once it receives the ascent of his employees.
The subordinates are kept adequately informed about the various matters which might affect their interest. A democratic leader offers his employees with ultimate freedom of expression and thought.
- The contribution of followers multiplies the ability of a leader.
- Morale of subordinates and their level of job satisfaction improves through consultative leadership style.
- Substantial reduction in labor turnover and absenteeism.
- Employees develop a positive outlook towards their leader which in turn diminishes resistance to change.
- Mass participation improves the decision quality.
- This leadership style is very time consuming and might lead to unnecessary delay in the decision-making process.
- Managers might make use of the same as a means of abdicating responsibility.
- Requires adequate persuasion and communication skills of the leader.
- Followers interpret this consultation as the leader’s sign of incompetence while dealing with problems.
Learn Leadership Continuum here in detail.
Laissez-fair or Free-Reign Form Of Leadership
Under this leadership style, the manager delegates the authority completely to his subordinates thus empowering them to take the decision. Such a manager actually relinquishes his position and believes in equal distribution of power. The leader provides his subordinates with necessary resources and serves as a point of contact.
- Maximizes the scope of development of subordinates.
- Brings a positive effect on the morale of subordinates as well as their level of job satisfaction.
- Subordinates do not actually receive the support and guidance of their leader.
- Employees might even ignore the contribution of their leader at times.
- The interest of subordinates might not be in harmony with that of the organization as a whole.
Questions on Styles of Leadership
- Skilled and educated subordinates require autocratic leadership – False.
- A consultative style is compatible with our prevailing value system – True.
- An autocratic style is a successful form of leadership in cases where subordinates wish to interact with the leader – False