Leadership is defined as the act of organizing a group of people to achieve a common objective. It entails giving directions to other people mostly to the subordinates by authority and being accountable for the results obtained (Johnson and Hackman, 2003, p.38). Leadership in an organization is an important tool of management. The leadership of an organization is a key determinant of success. However, it is important to note that there are different types of leadership, which are applicable in an organization. For instance, people like Winston Churchill, Martin Luther, Malcolm X, and Steve Jobs are some of the world-renowned leaders who applied different leadership styles. The manner in which a leader expresses his/her ideas provides directions and implements plans are referred to as a leadership style (Lussier and Achua, 2010). Some of the commonly used leadership styles include democratic, participative, situational, autocratic, and goal-oriented leadership styles, among others. This paper is an exploration of three different leadership styles by comparing and contrasting them in terms of the impact they have on organizational change and quality management.
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The autocratic leadership style also known as authoritarian provides clear expectations and determines the process of achieving the set objectives (McNichol and Hamer, 2006). For instance, autocratic leaders provide clear guidelines of the work to be done in terms of place and time. They also set a clear division between them and their subordinates. Autocratic leaders are known to practice independent decision-making processes. They do not interest in the ideas of the rest of the members. In that case, the process of making decisions in this leadership style is fast but less creative. As a rule, leaders under this leadership style are viewed as bossy and controlling. This is not the appropriate style to be used in businesses because the employees, as well as the customers, will feel inferior despite being the important party in the business organization.
Democratic leadership, on the other hand, is characterized by the active participation of the parties involved. As such, it is termed as the most effective leadership style to be used in all the areas starting with politics, economy, and family life. In this style, all the parties involved have their input, which is respected by everyone. The leaders under democratic leadership are there to give guidance and organize the group. Unlike autocratic leadership, the organization ruled under this leadership is more productive given the active participation of all its members. Thus, this style is the best to be applied for businesses as it gives employees and customers a room to air their views, which the business manager uses to improve the quality of the output (Appelbaum et al., 2008, p.23). Employees, as well as customers under this style, feel a part of the company, which enhances a good relationship within the business. However, it is important that the business leaders remain as the final decision maker but not allow the customers to make decisions for them.
The goal-oriented leadership style focuses on having the job done in whichever manner. In most cases, leaders under this style could be autocratic. They are also known to closely monitor the work done after it has been assigned. Such a leader can be involved in other tasks of standards maintenance in a bid to improve the company’s performance. They are also strict on time and make sure that deadlines are met. A businessperson using this style will be focused on profit maximization without caring about the customers. It is, therefore, not suitable for businesses because of a lack of proper customer relationships.
Appelbaum, S., et al. (2008). The impact of organizational change, structure, and leadership on employee turnover: A case study. Journal of Business Case Studies, 4(1), 21-38.
Johnson, C,. and Hackman, M. (2003). Leadership, a communication perspective (4 ed.). New York: Waveland Press.
Lussier, R. N., and Achua, C. F. (2010). Leadership: Theory, application, skill development. Australia: SouthWestern/Cengage Learning.
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McNichol, E., and Hamer, S. (2006). Leadership and management: A 3-dimensional approach. Cheltenham, U.K: Nelson Thornes.