Difference between autocratic and participative leadership

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Difference between autocratic and participative leadership

By | October 2010
Page 1 of 8
Introduction
This report aims to describe a leadership style that enables and helps contain employee work activity. Boundaries set by leaders help them provide guidance and direction, motivate action and creativity, stimulate individuality and ideas, and protect and nurture a space for employees to perform in. Leadership prescriptions have gone through many phases. While the consultative leadership was considerate, it was soft, and too idealistic. Authoritarian and directive leadership on the other hand were strict, and not very humanitarian, but got the work done. Though previous models have their value, a reality check is needed now. Leaders need to be flexible and should demonstrate a balanced behavior to be practical. They should be able to understand when to get involved and when to let go. This can be done by setting a boundary, ensuring the leader is involved and allowing space for the employees. Leadership

“More change always demands more leadership”(Ansari 1990). The most important function of leadership is to produce adaptive or useful change which involves aspects like direction setting and alignment. Direction setting is a process that produces vision and strategies and is completely different from planning which is a managerial function. On the other hand alignment is the process of getting people to understand, accept and line up in the chosen direction. In efforts to produce change in complex organizations, sizeable barriers of some sort are always encountered. Overcoming these barriers often takes a big effort, which only comes from energized people. This is why motivation and inspiration are central aspects of leadership.(Kotter 1990) The basic difference between a successful and unsuccessful organization is its leadership. As cited by Ansari “the successful organization consistently differs from ineffective organizations in one respect- the former are characterized by dynamic and effective leadership”(Ansari 1990). The term leadership has...