Which Business Leadership Style is Right For You

Leadership is undoubtedly one of the most important skills for executives, management, owners, etc. Without proper leadership, a company is destined for failure, with no direction, guidance or affirmed strategy for success.

But leadership isn’t a one size fits all discipline, in fact, there are different styles for different situations. It’s important to identify a leadership style that suits your individual preferences. This will increase the probability of reaching business goals, and to motivate your team in the most authentic way possible.

But what are some of the main leadership styles to consider? Let’s take a look at some different types so you can establish an approach which suits your leadership style:

Democratic Leadership

Democracy means including team members in the decision-making process. Democratic leadership gives workers an opportunity to contribute valuable input, which can be applied to make well-informed decisions.

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Though you’ll ultimately be responsible for decision-making, you’ll benefit from advice from team members who are more familiar with certain aspects of your business than you are. Democratic leadership can increase engagement among team members, boosting morale and forging a collective business unit.

Transformational Leadership

This is a proactive, progressive approach to leadership, especially given today’s fast-changing digital business landscapes. Transformational leaders look to constantly improve the performance of workers, with a clearly defined vision for future success.

As a transformational leader, you’ll regularly communicate your vision to employees, to ensure staff align and work toward company goals. A transformational leader is empathetic, self-aware and authentic. They hold themselves and team members accountable and can handle conflict with measured, non-confrontational means.

Autocratic Leadership

Autocratic leaders coordinate decisions without consulting their team. This style is preferred among business owners who need to make quick, uninterrupted decisions.

One of the problems with this style, however, is the way it tends to disenfranchise staff, who can feel isolated and as if their opinions are unneeded. An out of touch workforce can lose motivation to hit business targets.

This can ultimately lead to a dissatisfied team who feel out of touch with important decisions, something which can negatively influence productivity.

Laissez-Faire Leadership

This leadership style involves giving your team members significant freedom to explore new avenues and approaches.

Support and resources are offered when necessary, though invested leadership parties don’t micromanage employees. This is a great style if you have a highly skilled workforce you can trust to go about their daily duties without much direction.

In this situation, employees will be capable of managing their time well and ultimately performing. But for a less established team, this approach is ill-advised, especially when employees need effective guidance.

Bureaucratic Leadership

This method of leadership is deeply rooted in rules and procedures. Strict procedures are implemented for team members to follow precisely.

Bureaucratic leaders hold themselves to the same strict standards, using a style that doesn’t mesh well with creative problem solving and innovation. In these types of industries, employees should be given more room to think outside the box, rather than their creativity being nullified by policies.

But in a routine-oriented industry, bureaucratic leadership can be a good fit. Sometimes a cut and dry set of rules are easier for employees to follow, rather than workers being left wondering what’s expected from them in different situations.

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