Every leader – just like every person – is different and unique. But there are some common leadership styles that you’ll adopt, whether you’re heading up a project, a team, a department, or an entire company.
Here are a few common samples. Can you identify yourself in any of them? (Hint: To achieve optimal effectiveness, you may use more than one leadership style, based on the specific situation or challenge you’re dealing with.)
If you’re a coaching leader, you can quickly spot team members’ strengths, weaknesses and motivators. You assist people in setting SMART goals and naturally provide regular feedback to promote growth and success.
- The possible drawbacks: Coaching leadership can be time consuming. It requires dedicated one-on-one time with employees. This may be difficult in a fast-paced, deadline-driven environment.
This type of leader – also known as authoritarian – is focused primarily on results and efficiency. You may fit the bill if you prefer making decisions alone or with a small group and then presenting them to others. Autocratic can be a useful leadership style in organizations with strict guidelines, or in compliance-heavy industries. It can also be useful in environments where employees need a great deal of supervision, such as teams with little to no experience.
- The downside? Autocratic leaders must take care not to stifle people’s creativity or make other team members feel confined.
Hands Off Style
This style is also known as laissez-faire – and it’s the opposite of autocratic. A laissez-faire leader focuses largely on delegating tasks and providing little to no supervision. This can be an effective leadership style when all other team members are highly experienced and well trained.
- But … a hands-off method can threaten productivity if team members are confused about their leader’s expectations or if they need more hands-on instruction, motivation or boundaries in order to succeed.
AKA participative, this leadership style is a hybrid of autocratic and laissez-faire. A democratic leader asks team members for input and considers their feedback before making a decision. Since others feel their voices are being heard and their contributions matter, this style is associated with higher levels of engagement and employee satisfaction. By being a participative leader, you help team members feel empowered and unified and often, this is a real morale booster.
- The challenges: This style may potentially be inefficient and more costly, as it can take a longer time to organize larger group discussion and feedback. It also may add social pressure to team members who don’t like to share ideas in group settings.
Do you need further insight or guidance developing as a leader, an effective contributor to your current company, or in making a career change to stay on track with your long-term professional goals? If so, contact PrideStaff Fresno today. We take pride – yes, it’s right there in our name – in helping professionals throughout the Central Valley area and beyond achieve all their goals. Reach out to us today for more information.