There is a main fact, that there’s no perfect leadership style that works for every organization in every situation. Both of small startup and multinational corporation have their different needs and challenges and often need different leadership styles in management.
Knowing the different theories of organizational leadership can help you understand which type of leadership is right for you in a given situation.
Theories of Organizational Leadership
There are some of leadership styles in management appear on a lot of lists, such as autocratic, transformative and laissez-faire leaders.
There’s no ideal theory of leadership, so look for one that makes sense of the leadership styles you find in your organization or yourself.
The Autocratic Leader
The autocratic leader is the boss-end of the statement. They are responsible, and their employees do what is asked of them. The autocratic ruler has the power of making decisions and does not have to worry about soliciting the opinions of the employees.
Workers may get fed up with the lack of input and decide to jump ship. Having one person do most of the thinking can lead to a shortage of ideas. However, autocratic leadership has its benefits:
- There is no need for consultations, so decisions are made quickly.
- Whatever the organization’s stakeholders want, they can count on a despot who efficiently implements their vision.
- Autocracy works very well when jobs are routine or require a limited skill.
- It may be necessary for complex jobs that require everyone to follow the rules.
- In a crisis, it may be necessary to have one person make quick decisions while ignoring the worker’s input. Sometimes, different organizational leadership theories separate crisis leadership into its own management style.
The Laissez-Faire Leader
Among the types of leadership in an organization, a laissez-faire leader is almost the opposite of an autocrat. This laissez-faire leader sets goals for employees and then lets them find their own way across the finish line.
This leadership style big plus is that workers report high job satisfaction. It is especially effective with creative workers or those who have a lot of experience in their work. cons?
- May not work with inexperienced employees.
- Some workers need more guidance and continuous feedback than others.
- The laissez-faire manager risks becoming out of reach. It is still important to monitor performance, communicate expectations, and provide the team with the tools they need to work.
Some managers may use a laissez-faire policy with experienced employees they trust and exercise tighter control over others.
The Transformative Leader
transformational leaders are big-picture thinkers. This type of leader not only wants his employees to complete the current project; He wants to develop and improve the team to be better next time. Transformational leaders have a vision for the future, and they aim the team toward it.
Transformational leaders are inspiring, motivating, and imaginative. They value their employees and hold themselves and their team accountable. As they keep their eyes on the future, they may need a humble person, nuts, bolts, and right-handers to focus them on the present.
The Democratic Leader
The democratic leader makes the final decision but wants feedback from team members first. This type of leader wants to know the opinion of the team and takes the opinions of the members into account.
Workers usually prefer this style to autocratic “leadership”. Their opinions matter, which keeps them involved in the project. However, ordering and weighing the inputs before a decision is made is slow, and may be very ineffective when quick decisions are required.
The Bureaucratic Leader
Bureaucratic leadership derives its authority from the hierarchy of the organization. The department head or project leader does not rely on the personal charm of leadership. The rules of the leader’s bureaucracy define her authority and duties, and that is good enough.
This leadership style is often valuable in industries that must be tightly regulated. It can actually be effective because the role of a leader is clearly defined, and leaders are accountable to their superiors.
If decisions have to be scrutinized by several layers of management, the bureaucracy can be slow and cumbersome. Lower-ranking employees may find it difficult to get feedback or suggestions far enough up the hierarchy to make a difference.
The Charismatic Leader
The charismatic leader sits across from the bureaucrat. Their power lies in their character and existence, not in the power that company gives them.
Leadership through charisma can be effective and inspiring, just like a transformational leader. The difference is that the effects of transformational leadership persist after the leader has moved on. Inspiration of charismatic leaders disappears when they do.
The Transactional Leader
For the transaction leader, team management is all about carrot and stick policy. Employees are rewarded if they do a good job and are disciplined or criticized if they do not.
Transactional leaders assume that rewards and penalties combined with clear instructions should be sufficient to achieve good results.
For a simple, a transactional approach can yield good results. He is often inflexible; which employees find frustrating.
The Servant Leader
For the servant leader, Team needs come first. They value team input, willingly share authority, and place high priority on employee satisfaction. Sometimes it’s described as “altruistic leadership”.
Servant leadership enhances employee satisfaction with their jobs and can increase their commitment. Critics of this approach say that it is misplaced in assessing the needs of employees at the expense of the company. It is not suitable for all organizations.
The Situational Leader
The situational leader changes styles as often as necessary. When speaking with top management, they may ask for input and feedback. When addressing workers on an assembly line, they are more bureaucratic or authoritarian. They may be laissez-faire with established staff and more involved with newbies.
The disadvantage of situational leadership is that not everyone feels comfortable with it. If you are naturally drawn to transformational leadership or bureaucracy, for example, you may not find it easy to shift gears to other styles.
Applying Leadership Styles
Knowing the different theories of organizational leadership is just as important as applying them. If you use them to help you develop your own leadership styles in management or know the right project manager for a particular team, they have served their purpose. However, you still have to decide which style suits you best.
When one style comes naturally to you, that may make the simple decision for you. If you are not happy to leave decisions to others, you may be miserable trying a democratic leadership style. If you are not charismatic, trying to lead through charisma will feel unnatural and forced. If you’re more flexible with your style, there are other factors to consider:
- What does your team look like? Do they prefer clear, detailed instructions or do they want the freedom to generate their own ideas?
- How much time do you have to make decisions? If you need early decisions, democratic leadership likely won’t work.
- How much power do you really have? If the organization does not enable you to reward or punish your subordinates, you may not be able to enforce an autocratic or transactional leadership style.
- How much do you care about your team’s satisfaction? A style that engages them in decisions creates more job satisfaction than autocratic decision making.
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