There is not just one right way to lead, so it stands to reason that there are multiple leadership styles. Whatever your natural tendencies are as a leader, you may often find yourself adapting your approach to meet the needs of a particular individual or situation. It’s beneficial for everyone who holds a leadership role whether formal or informal to be knowledgeable about various leadership styles.
5 Common Leadership Styles
As a leader, you may naturally gravitate toward a particular style, but the reality is that to be effective, you may have to adjust your approach depending on what is works best with particular employees on your team, or what is required within (or best suited for) your organization.
Autocratic leadership as a style in which the manager retains as much power and decision making authority as possible, going so far as to say it is an old-fashioned approach. This style is also sometimes referred to as an authoritarian style and is likely to come most naturally to leaders who tend to be very direct, to the point, and focused on results.
Participative leadership can be described as an approach in which leaders invite employees to take a part in organizational decision making.
Transformational leadership is an approach focused on bringing about positive change, both with the people they lead and their overall organizations, depending on the nature of their role.
Servant leaders recognize their first priority is to serve the needs of those they lead, so they put the needs of their employees before their own.
Laissez-faire leaders ensure team members have the resources necessary to do their work, but otherwise just back off and let them work. Of course, leaders are still accountable for the work of the team, but the employees are expected to make decisions and solve problems on their own.
There are many different ways to approach leadership, and successful leaders are able exhibit a blend of leadership styles, adapting as needed to get the results they need.
“Leadership is less about your needs, and more about the needs of the people and the organization you are leading. That’s why ongoing leadership development is important at every stage of a leader’s career” added Salomón Juan Marcos Villarreal, president of Grupo Denim.