Any leader needs a certain technique to coordinate and direct others. Depending on the number of subordinates and the working environment, a person can choose from quite a big number of these techniques. Therefore, before choosing the approach, the leader needs to consider all the factors involved. There are different types of leadership styles for every situation.
What is a leadership style?
A leader has a series of resources they can use to act it their superior position. Leadership style is the technique a leader applies to its power and resources to guide other people through their actions. What is tricky here is to choose the ideal approach in any kind of situation. This is influenced mostly by the behavior of the leader and of their subordinates, but also by other organizational factors.
Different types of leadership styles
Judging from the situation, people can adopt more leadership styles. Some of them are interchangeable, but not everything can be used in anytime. Of course, each of them is more suitable in a certain context, so you need some research before opting for one.
1. Autocratic leadership style
Just like its name suggests, this type of leadership holds the leader at the center. They have supreme authority over problems and decisions, and take responsibility for everything they choose to do. However, this isn’t the most suitable leadership style for the subordinates.
In such an approach, the leader takes all decisions without consulting the employees. There is no flexibility on their part, meaning that they reach a decision, communicate it to the subordinates, and then ask them to respect it as it is.
Such a leadership style is not really sustainable. A company is not only about the boss, and it needs employee support to function. For a short period of time, such an approach might work but, in the end, the employees will want some more freedom when doing their tasks.
2. Democratic leadership style
This approach is the opposite of the autocratic one, as employees stay in the center. The leader asks their subordinates about their opinions. Even if they are the ones that take the final decision, they consider all the feedback they receive before doing that. These leaders can also give some authority to other people, and offer them freedom to make their own decisions.
If you ask employees, they prefer this among different types of leadership styles. They appreciate that their opinion counts, and enjoy participating in decision making. Usually, these leaders are more likeable and open to discussions, leaving a good impression on their employees.
3. Transactional leadership style
This leadership style can mean two different things. It’s either a maintaining of the current status, or consists of an exchange between the leader and the employees. The passive one where the status doesn’t change might not seem that sophisticated.
However, through the exchange one, leaders give indications to the employees and expect them to fulfill them. Then, they are willing to offer immediate rewards. Leaders inform the employees on their expectations and then motivate them with the help of these rewards.
4. Transformational leadership style
This type of leadership is directed towards change on all levels in the company. The change can be both at the organizational level, as well as the group or individual level. These leaders are extremely proactive, and set new challenges on a regular basis. This way, they can get better results and also help the employees grow.
5. Strategic leadership style
This type of leader has a broader view on the organization and on leadership in general. They communicate with members from all layers, not only with the superiors, and make sure everything works towards a goal.
Such leaders need a lot of strategy to deal with all kinds of situations. Usually, they can cope with satisfying the need of a company and offering growth resources.
6. Laissez-faire leadership style
As the name suggests, this style involves almost no interaction between the leader and the employees. The leader doesn’t get involved in any of the decisions these employees or departments take. Although this sounds like an ideal situation for many, too much freedom isn’t always beneficial.
Statistics show this is one of the least effective among different types of leadership styles. Employees still need some guidance, as they are not aware of all the organizational perks and might not know how to make the best decisions for the company.
7. Charismatic leadership style
This leadership style depends a lot on the personality and charisma of the leader. Therefore, for this approach, you need to be likeable and to have some power over the employees. From several points of view, some elements of the charismatic leadership and transformational leadership overlap. Both leaders are willing to drive some change in their employees, and have the power to do it.
However, charismatic leadership is not productive in all situations. The drawback is the fact that it depends on the personality of the leader. If they are not so outgoing, they might have some difficulties in approaching such a technique.
8. Coaching leadership style
Through this approach, leaders take personal responsibility to train and teach their employees. They are constantly seeking improvement and a better performance, and help employees develop their skills. This type of leadership is quite effective, as it succeeds in motivating people to do their job, in aiming higher, and in staying engaged in what they do.
9. Visionary leadership style
This approach requires a vision from the leader that is likely to make drastic changes in the company. Most of the time, visionaries realize they need people to achieve success. As a result, they treat their employees better and take care of their needs and requests. Also, what makes a good visionary leader is following the dream they had and turning it into reality.
There are different kinds of leadership styles suitable for all kinds of people. Some approaches might work in any environment, while others are highly dependent on the leaders and their employees. Whatever leadership style you pick, do not forget how important your employees are. Always value their opinions and respect their needs, and they will bring you the desired results.
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