Most Common Leadership Skills

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Most common Leadership Types are:
- Autocratic leadership.
- Bureaucratic leadership.
- Charismatic leadership.
- Democratic leadership or participative leadership.
- Laissez-faire leadership.
- People-oriented leadership or relations-oriented leadership. - Servant leadership.
- Task-oriented leadership.
- Transactional leadership.
- Transformational leadership.
 
Autocratic Leadership
Autocratic leadership is an extreme form of transactional leadership, where a leader exerts high levels of power over his or her employees or team members. People within the team are given few opportunities for making suggestions, even if these would be in the team's or organization's interest.  

Most people tend to resent being treated like this. Because of this, autocratic leadership usually leads to high levels of absenteeism and staff turnover. Also, the team's output does not benefit from the creativity and experience of all team members, so many of the benefits of teamwork are lost.  

For some routine and unskilled jobs, however, this style can remain effective where the advantages of control outweigh the disadvantages.  
Bureaucratic Leadership
Bureaucratic leaders "work by the book", ensuring that their staff follow procedures exactly. This is a very appropriate style for work involving serious safety risks (such as working with machinery, with toxic substances or at heights) or where large sums of money are involved (such as cash-handling).  

In other situations, the inflexibility and high levels of control exerted can demoralize staff, and can diminish the organizations ability to react to changing external circumstances.  
Charismatic Leadership
A charismatic leadership style can appear similar to a transformational leadership style, in that the leader injects huge doses of enthusiasm into his or her team, and is very energetic in driving others forward.  

However, a charismatic leader can tend to believe more in him or herself than in their team. This can create a risk that a project, or even an entire organization, might collapse if the leader were to leave: In the eyes of their followers, success is tied up with the presence of the charismatic leader. As such, charismatic leadership carries great responsibility, and needs long-term commitment from the leader.  

Democratic Leadership or Participative Leadership
Although a democratic leader will make the final decision, he or she invites other members of the team to contribute to the decision-making process. This not only increases job satisfaction by involving employees or team members in what's going on, but it also helps to develop people's skills. Employees and team members feel in control of their own destiny, and so are motivated to work hard by more than just a financial reward.  

As participation takes time, this style can lead to things happening more slowly than an autocratic approach, but often the end result is better. It can be most suitable where team working is essential, and quality is more important than speed to market or productivity.  

Laissez-Faire Leadership
This French phrase means "let them do" and is used to describe a leader who leaves his or her colleagues to get on with their work. It can be effective if the leader monitors what is being achieved and communicates this back to his or her team regularly. Most often, laissez-faire leadership works for teams in which the individuals are very experienced and skilled self-starters. Unfortunately, it can also refer to situations where managers are not exerting sufficient control.  

People-Oriented Leadership or Relations-Oriented Leadership
This style of leadership is the opposite of task-oriented leadership: the leader is totally focused on organizing, supporting and developing the people in the leader's team. A participative style, it tends to lead to good teamwork and creative collaboration. However, taken to extremes, it can lead to failure to achieve the team's goals. In...
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