Different Management Styles To Help You Lead The Way
Wed 25th August 2010
This means that a firm but fair convention may be effective in one scenario but a softer more tactful style more apt in another. The severity of your firmness and fairness will depend upon your personality so if you are a fairly serious person by nature, you may want to see if you can soften that edge so as to avoid difficulties with your staff.
If you are curious as to which type of management category you fall into, there are many personality tests available online. Couple this with your approach to organization and how you expect things to be done and you will have the key components of your leadership style.
There are many books which outline in detail the individual management styles available so you are sure to identify yourself amongst two or three. Once you determine your management style, you become aware of your individual strengths and weaknesses in the various approaches and will be able to expand on your own personal development.
The three significant management styles used today are as follows:
This tier of order relates to differing levels of control that the manager has over his workforce and consequently the rise or fall in his profits. We will look at each of these in turn.
With this technique, authority is 100 percent in the managers hands and this is echoed throughout the workforce. No-one is in any doubt as to who has the first and last say within the organisation and there is no fear of having too many chiefs and not enough Indians for everyone is working under their own individual pressure to produce the demands which are expected of them. This regimental approach demands action without question, there is no room for employees to offer input and it is unlikely that they would dare to try. For businesses that require no-nonsense effective and direct leadership which produces synchronised results, this dictatorial method of commanding a team is especially favourable for people who are doers rather than thinkers. No room for sensitive employees in such an establishment so those who like to question decisions or lack confidence will be swiftly replaced. Although this kind of environment can seem highly regimented, it can be highly effective in organisations that have to respond immediately such as the armed forces or a fast-paced trading environment.
Cranking down the pressure a bit, we look at a management approach where employees are encouraged to air their views and opinions. Their thoughts are highly respected, appreciated and often acted upon. Sometimes referred to as participative management, this approach forms a democratic environment where both staff and management intermingle for effective decision making. Whilst this approach invokes a more relaxed ambience and staff feel that they have a sense of belonging, there can be a thin line between dominant employees and their superiors. If not carefully monitored, staff may prefer to take orders from a fellow colleague rather than management so they need to know that decisions are welcomed but that management have the final say.
This is an ideal approach for the board room and in a slower paced environment where there is room for integrated deliberated discussion and consideration from management and staff. A manager who uses the democratic level to leadership will delegate empowerment to his staff. This means that they become completely responsible for completing tasks using their own methods to produce results. This motivates the individual to give every project their full attention and work is normally always presented at a very high level. Democratic management is very popular today but it can slow progress as staff need to be consulted every step of the way. It can also produce areas of confusion and conflict when staff offload some of their responsibilities to other team members and the level of responsibility is not evenly distributed.
A very liberal approach to management where communication flows naturally between staff and management. Particularly effective when used with staff who are highly trained professionals with a self-motivated attitude as the manager gives employees a free rein to make nearly all of their own decisions. The manager is somewhat detached from decisions related to running the company and is there primarily to supply additional information or answer any queries. Staff are usually guided by a supervisor or their own initiative which encourages a higher level of autonomy within the workplace. A successful approach in creative fields as individuals feel motivated to do their own personal best but this could cause confusion as a fragmented team working at their own pace and time frames could fall behind schedules.
Whilst each of these categories have their advantages and disadvantages, one is neither better than the other. However, it is necessary for employees to work under management just as an orchestra works better with a conductor. If staff were simply left to their own devices, it is likely that individuals will look for ways to make life easier for themselves rather than the productivity of the company.
Gurus and writers continue to churn out interesting and not so interesting ways to create an effective management style. Just keying in the word 'management style' brings up over 113 million terms, so there is plenty of reading material out there. Add to this the many instructional DVDs, courses and seminars and you will certainly be spoilt for choice. If you want to streamline your choices key in the words 'management style choices' where you will have just 42 million hits to sift through!
Original article appears here: