What are the 7 leadership styles?

Within my jobs over the years (entering the workforce when I was 19 – interning for a payroll manager; demanding but enjoyable!), I have learned about different leadership styles and the impact each one has on the workforce. In all these years, I have endured boss would raise his voice to an unconscionable level, the fearsome boss who often fired people to keep up the fear factor, to the boss who treated everyone with fairness and humility. Now that I look back, I recognize the importance of good leadership in the workplace. We all deserve to feel valued, respected, and motivated to be a part of a larger success story; and to be led by a supportive motivator.

To learn more, I decided to research on ‘what makes a great leader?’ and ‘major leadership styles.’ In the process, I realized there is no all-encompassing style of leadership. Sometimes leaders don’t even know that they are leading within the capacity of a major role. And so, it makes perfect sense to have various styles of leadership fit the different personalities and working environments in which people respond to most effectively.

7 Types of Leadership Styles

Portraying leadership is an extension of a person’s personality and speaks a lot about their credibility as a working professional. However, the concept of leadership and a leader has changed over the years; it is no more the tyranny and bossing and giving orders to others. It is more handling a team well, showing them the right path, and being role models themselves.

Every work needs leadership qualities, and every employee needs to show leadership qualities some time or the other.

 There are different types of leadership prevalent in the world. Every person is a leader and has an individual leadership style that comes to the fore when required. Here is a list of major leadership styles and a brief summary of their pros and cons.

Autocratic Leadership

Autocratic leadership is where the leader makes all the decisions and rarely accept advice from followers. Typically, autocratic leaders are bossy in nature and do not have much faith on their employees. They are the ones who retain decision-making rights with them and expect employees to follow the same. They determine the strategies, techniques and policies that dictate overall functions in the organization. This oftentimes ends into a one-sided affair where the outcomes are efficient but less-creative.

Autocratic leadership is also known as the authoritarian leadership style. Employees are expected to adhere to the decision at a time and pace set by the leader. This severely affects the overall motivation and engagement level of the employees. It also restricts the workplace communication which is effective for overall organizational performance.

Such leadership style, however, is known to be quite effective in the short term.

Democratic leadership style

In this leadership style, the leader is more participative and involves all team members in making crucial decisions. This leadership style is perfect for an organization where team members are highly experienced. This leadership style is also called participative leadership and focuses on communication as a crucial tool. It requires a leader who is intelligent, creative, and considerate towards others.

Coaching leadership style

This is one of the effective leadership styles prevalent today where the leader doesn’t lead directly, but indirectly. Here, the leaders are like trainers or teachers who involve in supervising team members. This is a new leadership kind across many organizations. It also leads to many

It comes with a bouquet of additional benefits such as boosting employee motivation, increasing their performance skills, grooming, and motivating team members.

Strategic leadership style

This leadership style refers to the leader’s ability to express a strategic vision for an organization and implement that vision with the right strategies and tools. The style enables a leader to create a team of well-trained professionals who are well-equipped to deal with any risks that might come in the future.

Transformational leadership style

This is one of the most popular leadership styles and aims at creating a vibrant work culture with effective communication among the team members. However, the leadership style also demands a good vision and intellectual stimulation to bring in a change in the organization. It focuses on keeping high goals with practical and working together to accomplish that vision.  

Laissez-faire leadership style

Laissez-faire means ‘let them do’ or ‘let it be’ in English. In this leadership style, the leaders delegate responsibilities and tasks among the team members and let them work with no or minimal interference. This style gives unlimited scope to the organization for innovation and flexibility.  

Charismatic leadership style

The charismatic leaders are the people who unknowingly or quite attract people with their charm and stature. These people are self-motivated, passionate, and confident. This leadership style is useful to create a robust standing in the marketplace and earn a vast fan-following. However, this style is considered less-favorable because the result primarily relies on the leader.

Leadership is an important trait required everywhere, be it at home, an organization, or a country. Being a leader comes with its own set of responsibilities and challenges which the leader needs to tackle effectively and strategically. It is hard to determine what leadership style needs to be implemented when, where, and how. It is upon the leader and the situation in which the organization is that determines this!

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Diana Coker

Diana Coker is a staff writer at The HR Digest, based in New York. She also reports for brands like Technowize. Diana covers HR news, corporate culture, employee benefits, compensation, and leadership. She loves writing HR success stories of individuals who inspire the world. She’s keen on political science and entertains her readers by covering usual workplace tactics.

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