Daniel Goleman conducted a research and noted six leadership styles. The styles identified were visionary, coaching, affiliative, democratic, pacesetting, coercive and pacesetting. The first four are dissonance styles while the last four are resonance style as the last four encourage listening while the others do not (Goleman, 2002) The visionary leader communicates the “dream” and vision. He is there to inspire people not to give up but to keep on pursuing the vision.
He understands the hurdles faced along the way as the employees work towards achieving the dream. He is empathetic. This style is appropriate when the company has changed the management and style of doing things. A radical change has to take place. The employees need to be focused on the new changes and strategies so as not to be left behind in the new system. The coaching leader helps an individual identify his strengths and weaknesses.
This is with an aim to help him or her excel in performance. The individual goals are aligned to the company goals. He coaches and encourages. The employee though has to be receptive to the improvement suggestions given (Sharlow, 2004). The affiliative leader is interested in the harmony of the organization. He is a problem solver. He enhances the moral of the employees. At the end of the day employees feel a sense of belonging. They feel connected to each other.
This kind of leader is important in times of conflict resolution. Where certain employees have disagreed he comes to mend the broken connection. The drawback of this method is that since it is needed when team morale is low, when an employee is underperforming he may not be corrected since the focus on this style of leadership is to encourage employees. Employees may receive too much praise from the leader leading to complacency. There is the pace-setting leader who is a strong personality.
He pushes employees to achieve the organizational goals. He tends to micromanage and is highly impatient. He is not understanding or empathetic at all. This style of leadership is appropriate where high-quality results are required. The impact on an organization is extremely negative. First all the employees will get tired quickly as they are being overworked.
The leader does not collaborate with the team at all. As a team consulted reviewing two companies involved in banking I observed the following two styles of leadership that is coercive or commanding and the democratic style. Goleman argued that these styles of leadership emerge as a result of different manager shaving different combinations of emotional intelligence.
An emotional intelligence is the ability to regulate and work with emotions to enhance leadership (Fleming, 2009) A good leader should be able to gauge the environment and know when to exercise which type of leadership. He should be a master of all the leadership styles. Goleman put forward that the leaders who mastered four or more kinds of leadership styles were the best.
The Commanding Style of Leadership Old School Management: In this organization, the CEO adopted a “divide & rule” approach, setting the teams against each other in an effort to obtain resources including staffing. Through budget & allocation of resources, the CEO controlled staffing levels & encouraged the team leaders to “fight for their resources”.
The team leaders felt decisions about resourcing were made on the basis of being favored by the boss rather than objective criteria. In this style of leadership, the manager is controlling by setting the staff against each other. This helps him as he gets the staff attention from him. They do not notice his own inadequate performances as a manager as the teams are all so busy fighting each other. (Itoje, 2008). This style of leadership kills team spirit. It further discourages talent and morale of an individual.
The staff view each other as competitors in the same organization yet they are working to achieve the same vision. The profits one department makes is cancelled by the losses of another department. It becomes clearly a win lose situation in the departments and overall the organization does not gain at all. The teams instead should be approaching their work with a win win strategy.
It is possible to have a scenario where every team in the organization gains. This makes the organization make a profit. Most organizations pay bonuses after the company has made a profit at year end. These bonuses are paid out only when the company makes a profit in overall. Where one department has made a loss and another one a profit none in the organization may get a bonus. This style of style of leadership breeds a culture of unhealthy competition in the organization.
There is healthy competition that involves transfer pricing style of accounting. Every department is analyzed as a cost and profit centre. Other departments are encouraged to cut costs like the way a certain department has done over a certain quarter. It is an extreme style of management. People become bitter and very resentful towards these kinds of managers. The level of absenteeism in staff coming to work is high. The various teams contribute suggestions however at the end of the day the manager’s decisions rule.
The staff feels powerless and drained of energy as he spends most of the time fighting. There is absolutely no time to be creative or innovative to generate new ideas. The organization may also end up experiencing high levels of staff turnover. The staff will get tired of their environment and seek new opportunities elsewhere. The working environment is one of the incentives of any job. With this kind of hostile environment the staff will seek new areas of work where they are appreciated and there is teamwork.
An employee also desires a sense of belonging. The hours an employee spends in the workplace are a lot so it is natural for him or her to desire some peace of mind. Constant fighting really wearies the staff down. This style of leadership also affects productivity (Wilson, 2003) Listening skills are not used at all by this kind of leader. There is a lot of fear in the organization as people who oppose the leader can easily be fired. This manager usually has two or more departments reporting to him.
He is therefore able to manipulate them into fighting as he backbites each to the other. The effect of this kind of leadership is negative on an organizational climate. This kind of leader also demands instant compliance. It is “Do what I tell you basis” leadership (Amato, 2003). The subordinates become highly disempowered and confused. (Parish, 2010).
This style of leadership is useful when there are emergencies and severe situations. It is because he provides clear direction in critical situations (Acharya, 2010). He is useful in grave situations or when a company needs an urgent turnaround (Jonge, 2010).
He deals excellently with problem employees. This method should be used only as a last resort. For the coercive leader there are strategies on how to deal with it. The employees should neutralize the leader’s attacks. This kind of leader feeds off the negative energy he creates. By not reacting to their games you silence and they have no power over you. Secondly the employees should wait before responding.
When the leader poisons them against each other the teams should first cool down and approach the situation rationally especially where they feel other departments are being favored. One should act upon facts and not be emotional. This kind of leader is territorial, tears others down rather than uplifting them. They are incompetent, rigid, lack self-control and are corrupt (Warrilow, 2009). Democratic Style of Leadership New School Management: In this organization, the CEO adopted a market-based approach to resourcing.
Staffing & resourcing were directly related to the needs of the business team rather than being given on subjective criteria. The policy was clear to all concerned and allowed the organization to develop growth plans with all teams & areas. Staff training and development involved a proposal being assessed by a group of team leaders with a clear focus on what was best for the organization. This is a hands-off style of leadership with little guidance by the manager.
A leader realizes he requires help.(Sanborn, 2010) There is complete freedom for the people to make decisions. Tools and resources required for the project are provided by management. It is referred to as a “delegated approach” to leadership. The leader just sets the overall priority or goal. This is the listener leader where a group of individuals are involved in decision making or arriving at a census. This leader is an influencer, collaborator, team worker and superb listener.
He values the people’s ideas therefore they are commitment. In this approach, leadership can also be abused. If a leader is indecisive and afraid of making decisions he can misuse the team. If he is lazy he will throw the decision making process to the team expecting them to come up with the strategy and goals every time (Hallet, 2010).The leader when distracted can also misuse the team. He could be having many issues on his mind thus he passes the work to the team even when it is his own responsibility.
The leader needs to appreciate that this style of leadership requires very close monitoring. It needs supervision every step as the teams come up with decisions and projects to do. This style of leadership appropriate where one wants support or a consensus. When used effectively the leader builds flexibility and responsibility. It encourages talent growth and the generation of new ideas. The leader by using this style provides opportunities for employees to experience personal growth and satisfaction.
Achievement by employees is appreciated and they are encouraged to measure their own performance. The employees are kept aware of what is happening in the organization. There are several times that this style of leadership is not to be used.
This is when there is a time constraint. The drawback in this method is that since every decision made has to be a team effort it consumes a lot of time. It may also be easier and cost-saving at times for the leader to make a decision alone. This method is to be used only where the quality of decision making is more important than speed.
A leader may be reluctant to use this method where mistakes will not be tolerated. There are leaders who feel threatened and insecure by this kind of leadership. The listening leader may also be challenged at times. In diverse teams sensitive topics may be raised and tact is required. This method is unsuitable where the team members lack skills and knowledge needed to complete tasks given(Cherry, 2009)Some individuals are not good at planning or setting deadlines and can mess the whole decision making process.
The team members should be highly skilled and capable of working on their own. Conclusion : Analyzing the two approaches, the democratic approach is better since the effect on the organizational has more advantages than disadvantages. In, the coercive or commanding approach the disadvantages outweigh the advantages. In leadership, there are several factors affecting the style of leadership that can be used. Such factors include the size of team being led.
If it is a large group it should be a visionary kind of leadership. The other factor is the time available on the team hands. Where there is a time constraint, the kind of leadership that is appropriate is pace-setting or commanding. Leaders with a wealth of experience prefer a commanding kind of leadership style especially when they feel the team members in their skills, knowledge and knowledge.
The position a leader is in also affects the kind of leadership given. A leader who is the group head of an international organization may prefer visionary kind of leadership while a leader at supervisor level may be more comfortable involving the team to make decisions. What about the subject matter? If it involves the team a leader may also prefer involving the team. For example if it is a new system of ordering inventory since it is the employees who will be using it they are better placed to make decisions and contribute ideas.
By doing this, they will own the system, have a sense of belonging and be highly motivated. Finally are the decisions to be made complex or simple. Decisions of a complex nature require a lot of brainstorming. Employees have different perspectives and ideas which are all to be valued whether to be used at that point in time or not. Simple decisions can be made by the overall leader quickly. Other factors that affect the kind of leadership style used are the company, the personality of manager and the employees (Zweifel 2010).
The values, policies and practices of a company play a big role. Does the company practice open door policy or not? The manager’s personality, background, beliefs and experiences are also a factor. If the company used commanding style of leadership before in another organization and it failed he will be more open to the idea of using participative style of leadership. Finally the employees have different personalities and perspectives. In the same way there are different styles of leadership there are also different kind of followers.
Some employees desire to participate in decision making. Others are very comfortable just receiving orders. As the discussion reveals leadership is a very complex issue that the management of a company should invest in. There should be periodic appraisals of the leadership by employees for monitoring purposes. Managers can also be trained in leadership.
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