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Types of Leadership Styles

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Leadership style is the way, manner and approach of providing direction plan implementation and motivation of the employees. It should be noted that good leadership requires good knowledgebase. Different leadership style is required for a different situation and category of employees. There are generally four categories of leadership styles: autocratic, bureaucratic, democratic and laisse-faire. Each and every leader should know when and how to apply a different leadership style depending on the situation. Good and effective leaders are known to apply the different types of leadership styles as determined by circumstances.

The factors influencing the type of leadership style to be used are: time available; are the workplace relationships based on disrespect or trust and respect; who holds the information, the manager, employee or both; what is the level of training of the employees and how well are they informed about the task to be performed; stress levels; internal conflicts; type of task; and the established procedures and legal framework (kapena, 2000). Autocratic Leadership StyleThis is usually considered as the classical approach. The manager retains most of the decision making authority and power and does not consult employees.

In this type of leadership style, the employees give no input to the success of the company or organization. The employees respond to the orders given by those in authority and are expected to perform those duties without queries or explanations. The style emphasizes the use of a discriminatory set of punishments and rewards. The leaders give the employees orders on how to carry out a certain task, give the procedures to be followed in accomplishing the task without giving the employees a chance to contribute.

The style yields best results when there is a shortage of time and the employees are self-motivated. The style should be used on rare occasions and only when there is a need to. The style has been highly criticized in terms of employee turn over and absenteeism. Usually, the employees are resistant to autocratic leaders and mainly tend to disobey their orders.    

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