Leadership Styles

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The role of leadership in management is largely determined by the organisational culture of the company. It has been argued that managers beliefs, values and assumtions are of critical importance to the overall style of leadership that they adopt. There are several different leadership styles that can be identified within each of the following Management techniques. Each technique has its own set of good and not-so-good characteristics, and each uses leadership in a different way. The Autocrat

The autocratic leader dominates team-members, using unilateralism to achieve a singular objective. This approach to leadership generally results in passive resistance from team-members and requires continual pressure and direction from the leader in order to get things done. Generally, an authoritarian approach is not a good way to get the best performance from a team. There are, however, some instances where an autocratic style of leadership may not be inappropriate. Some situations may call for urgent action, and in these cases an autocratic style of leadership may be best. In addition, most people are familiar with autocratic leadership and therefore have less trouble adopting that style. Furthermore, in some situations, sub-ordinates may actually prefer an autocratic style. The Laissez-Faire Manager

The Laissez-Faire manager exercises little control over his group, leaving them to sort out their roles and tackle their work, without participating in this process himself. In general, this approach leaves the team floundering with little direction or motivation. Again, there are situations where the Laissez-Faire approach can be effective. The Laissez-Faire technique is usually only appropriate when leading a team of highly motivated and skilled people, who have produced excellent work in the past. Once a leader has established that his team is confident, capable and motivated, it is often best to step back and let them get on with the task, since interfering can...
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