Understand the differences between main management styles and how your employees are likely to respond will surely help you lead the team through ups and downs.
There’s no doubt that leadership plays an important role in all organizations. This position requires lots of specialized knowledge and management skills to successfully lead, inspire and motivate your team to succeed. Your management styles in various business activities will determine the team’s overall outcomes, also how happy your employees are at work.
Quickly answer 8 questions below to find out what is your management styles:
1. Your catchphrase is:
- “Remember to follow my guidance.”
- “Do you have any suggestions?”
- “Just do it your way.”
2. Your team members are having a conflict. You will:
- Ask them to leave off and get back to work.
- Arrange a meeting, listen to their perspectives and help them ease the conflict.
- Let them manage it on their own—it’s not your concern.
3. When delegating tasks, you usually:
- Maintain full control over all operations to ensure the outcomes’ quality.
- Encourage individual styles and support the team whenever they seek for help.
- Expect the high level of self-inspection and let the team decide on how to complete their duties as long as they ensure established objectives.
4. How do you make decisions?
- I quickly make all the relevant decisions as discussions are unnecessary.
- I encourage my team members to contribute their ideas and suggestions on any decisions I make.
- My team makes their own decisions and I just motivate them to choose the most appropriate one.
5. When arranging meetings, you:
- Schedule the meeting and require everyone to join.
- Check with the team when they’re available beforehand.
- Schedule regular weekly meetings so that everyone’s on track.
6. When it comes to feedback, you:
- Don’t expect the team to criticize operations or methods at work.
- Encourage feedback and work with the team on solutions.
- Will listen to the team’s feedback and consider their suggestions.
7. How frequently do you check in with your team?
- I prefer to know what they are doing every day.
- Maybe once or twice a week.
- Not a lot since they all manage their own duties.
8. How much work-related information do you share with your team?
- Only what they need to finish the tasks.
- Almost everything to ensure transparency at work.
- Only what the etiquettes say I should share.
Now let’s see the result!
Mostly A – You are an Autocratic leader
In this top-down management style, managers have their underlings by the balls. They’re not interested in or required for their subordinates’ suggestions, and they certainly are the only ones who make all decisions in the workplace. An individual’s responsibilities are well-defined, and employees are expected to doubtlessly follow the orders and instructions while being constantly supervised.
Due to the strict deadline and management, autocratic leaders can effectively streamline operations and boost their employees’ productivity at work. When a crisis arises, these leaders can minimize mixed opinions and speed up the decision-making process. Also, as this is a one-way communication, there would be no misunderstanding when information is passed indirectly through other layers of management.
However, not being listened to and recognized can lead to a lack of work motivation among the employees, which can result in the failure of the employee retention strategy. As team members rarely have chances to contribute to the problem-solving process, the business could let the creative solutions fall through the crack.
Consider practicing autocratic management style in times of crisis, when leaders can better guide the team and control damage.
Mostly B – You are a Democratic leader
As its name suggests, democratic managers are those who value the team’s ideas. They encourage contributions, be willing to listen and let the team get involved in the business procedures. The leaders, in this case, can sometimes act as a consultant to advise their subordinates on aspects of work, or a spokesperson who represents the team on crucial occasions. Though leaders still make important decisions, the team also has more freedom to decide how they work. Within these teams, communication ranges from top-down to bottom-up.
This management style is especially useful when several specialized skills are required to run a project, also will help approach the issues with more diverse perspectives. As employees involve deeply in the processes, they will have more rooms for creative solutions, feel being appreciated and are better aware of their contributions to the company's achievements. It is also one of the good ways to improve employee retention strategy. Meanwhile, you will also get your teamwork as one through open communications and the understanding on the personal level.
On the other hand, in urgent situations, democratic managers will find it luxurious to spend time gathering ideas from teammates. In addition, it’s possibly a conflict of different views during the discussions. If one’s input is not taken, you should subtly show your appreciation to avoid the decrease in morale and work satisfaction.
Hence, the key to succeeding with democratic management is well-organized decision-making .
Mostly C – You are a Laissez-Faire leader
This management style is almost hands-off as supervision is curtailed. The leaders are mostly present to delegate tasks to their team members and provide resources if needed. They also possibly get involved when things go wrong or the team asks for help. Otherwise, it depends on the employees to proceed with the work and complete their duties. Employees are given a great amount of faith and responsibilities from their leaders, who confident that they can stay committed and inspired to achieve the final goals.
Laissez-faire management style gives experienced and self-motivated employees opportunities to flourish their full potential and strive for innovative ideas, from the creation of production processes. At the same time, as employees are trusted and empowered, they tend to be more diligent at work rather than being commanded. This style also helps streamline the daily workflow as redundant management steps are removed.
Although this may be true, it can’t be denied that without guidance and firm leadership, the team functions may stumble and stall if the members are not actually qualified for their roles. There’s also no chance the leaders can spot hidden issues and take timely actions to prevent further deterioration. Additionally, team unity may suffer due to the lack of interaction between members and each pursuing their own projects.
All things considered, the laissez-faire management style should only be used when you can be sure about the professional competence of your subordinates.
You might find yourself sharing characteristics from all three types above. This is probably good news since leadership is complicated and there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to management. The most successful leaders should know when and how to adjust their management styles to suit the demands of the teams and the issues they’re facing.