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Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 1
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 2
Leadership in itself is a somewhat fluid principle. Generally, most leaders adapt their leadership
styles to suit their situation. This is particularly true the longer they lead; they adapt their
leadership style as they learn and engage with their employees.
To become a more successful leader, leaders must understand their current leadership style. In
this article, we’ll answer the question “what a leadership style?”, and then look at 6 of the most
common leadership styles and their effectiveness.
TABLE OF CONTENT
In This Article We will look at The six most common leadership styles are:
1. Transformational Leadership
2. Delegative Leadership
3. Authoritative Leadership
4. Transactional Leadership
5. Participative Leadership
6. Servant Leadership
How to Know The leadership style of your Leaders?
Detailed feedback is one easy way to know your leadership style. Asking those who you lead to
provide you with open and honest feedback is a helpful exercise. Doing so will allow you to
adapt your style's characteristics within your day-to-day responsibilities as a leader.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 3
A leadership style refers to a leader’s methods, characteristics, and behaviors when directing,
motivating, and managing their teams. A leader’s style is shaped by a variety of factors,
including personality, values, skills, and experiences, and can have a significant impact on the
effectiveness of their leadership.
Their leadership style also determines how leaders develop their strategy, implement plans and
respond to changes while managing stakeholders’ expectations and their team’s well-being.
In many cases leaders will express a wide-range of leadership styles – and will likely adapt this
dependent on their situation. However, leader will often have one pre-eminent style that they
tend to express more often.
As a leader, understanding your leadership style is critically important. When you understand
your leadership style, you can determine how this affects those you directly influence. It also
helps you find your leadership strengths and define which leadership skills to develop.
Some leaders can already categorize their current leadership style, recognizing whether this
makes them effective. Or how their employees see them. But it is not always so defined. It is
usually the case that leaders can categorize their style; however, they often exhibit traits of many
other leadership styles.
Detailed feedback is one easy way to know your leadership style. Asking those who you lead to
provide you with open and honest feedback is a helpful exercise. Doing so will allow you to
adapt your style’s characteristics within your day-to-day responsibilities as a leader.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 4
We’ve likely all been in a group situation where someone took control, communicating with the
group and creating a shared vision. Creating unity, developing bonds, creating energy, and
instilling passion. This person is very likely to be considered a transformational leader.
Transformational leadership is a leadership style that emphasizes change and transformation.
Leaders who adopt this approach strive to inspire their followers to achieve more than they ever
thought possible by tapping into their potential. This type of leadership can be highly effective in
organizations looking to make significant changes or transformations.
Some of the key characteristics of transformational leadership include:
A focus on the future: Transformational leaders always look ahead and think about what needs to
be done to achieve the organization’s goals. They inspire their followers to do the same.
A focus on change: Transformational leaders are comfortable with change and understand it is
necessary for organizational success. They work to ensure their followers are comfortable with
change and can adapt to it.
A focus on people: Transformational leaders see the potential in every one of their followers.
They strive to develop their followers’ individual strengths and abilities so that they can reach
their full potential.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 5
Transformational Leadership
Transformational leadership is a style of leadership that has become increasingly popular in
recent years. Leaders who use this approach strive to inspire their followers to achieve more than
they ever thought possible by tapping into their individual potential. This type of leadership can
be extremely effective in organizations that are looking to make major changes or
transformations.
Get a complete view of what Transformational Leadership is:
1. What is transformational leadership and what are its key characteristics
2. How can a transformational leader inspire their followers to achieve more than they ever
thought possible
3. What are some of the benefits of using a transformational leadership style
4. How can you become a transformational leader?
1. What is transformational leadership and what are its key characteristics
Transformational leadership is a style of leadership that emphasizes change and transformation.
Leaders who use this approach strive to inspire their followers to achieve more than they ever
thought possible by tapping into their individual potential. This type of leadership can be
extremely effective in organizations that are looking to make major changes or transformations.
Some of the key characteristics of transformational leadership include:
A focus on the future:
Transformational leaders are always looking ahead and thinking about what needs to be done in
order to achieve the organization’s goals. They inspire their followers to do the same.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 6
A focus on change:
Transformational leaders are comfortable with change and understand that it is necessary for
organizational success. They work to ensure that their followers are also comfortable with
change and are able to adapt to it.
A focus on people:
Transformational leaders see the potential in each and every one of their followers. They strive to
develop their followers’ individual strengths and abilities so that they can reach their full
potential.
2. How can a transformational leader inspire their followers to achieve more
than they ever thought possible
Transformational leaders are able to inspire their followers to achieve more than they ever
thought possible by tapping into their individual potential. They focus on the future and work to
ensure that their followers are comfortable with change.
Additionally, they see the potential in each and every one of their followers and strive to develop
their individual strengths and abilities. This approach can be extremely effective in organizations
that are looking to make major changes or transformations.
3. What are some of the benefits of using a transformational leadership
style
There are many benefits of using a transformational leadership style. Some of the key benefits
include:
 Increased creativity and innovation: When leaders focus on change and transformation, it
encourages their followers to be creative and come up with new ideas.
 Improved performance: Transformational leadership can inspire followers to achieve
more than they ever thought possible. This can lead to improved performance within the
organization.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 7
 Greater motivation: Transformational leaders are able to motivate their followers by
tapping into their individual potential. This type of motivation can lead to increased
productivity and engagement.
 Better communication: Transformational leaders typically have excellent communication
skills. This allows them to effectively communicate their vision and inspire their
followers.
 Stronger relationships: Transformational leaders often build strong relationships with
their followers. This can lead to increased trust and loyalty.
4. How can you become a transformational leader?
In order to become a transformational leader, you need to focus on the future, be comfortable
with change, and focus on people. Additionally, you need to have excellent communication skills
and be able to inspire your followers. If you are able to focus on these key characteristics, you
will be able to successfully lead an organization through change and transformation.
Are you looking to become a transformational leader? Do you have what it takes? Use the tips in
this article to start developing your transformational leadership skills.
Discover the Transformational Leader program by IMD and unlock you full leadership
potential.
Often referred to as “laissez-faire,” a delegative leadership style focuses on delegating initiative
to team members. This is generally known as one of the least intrusive forms of leadership; this
translates to “let them do.” This is therefore considered a very hand-off leadership style.
Leaders who adopt this style have trust and rely on their employees to do their jobs. They don’t
micromanage or get too involved in providing feedback or guidance. Instead, delegative leaders
allow employees to utilize their creativity, resources, and experience to help them meet their
goals.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 8
This can be a successful leadership strategy if team members are competent and take
responsibility for their work. However, delegative leadership can also lead to disagreements
among team members and may split or divide a group.
It can be challenging for newcomers to adapt to this style of leadership or staff members to
develop an understanding of who is ultimately in charge and responsible for outcomes.
Therefore, this leadership style must be kept in check.
Delegative Leadership
Identifying your preferred leadership style is the best way to cement yourself as a knowledgeable
and successful leader. All leaders and those interested in becoming leaders must understand the
different leadership styles: transformational, authoritative, transactional, participative, and
delegative leadership.
Each leadership style has unique characteristics, benefits, and potential to help grow your career.
This article will cover delegative leadership to help you determine if this style is best for you.
Get a complete view of what Delegative Leadership is:
1. What is delegative leadership
2. How delegative leadership can change you and your career
3. What are the benefits of using a delegative leadership style
4. How can you become a delegative leader?
what are its key characteristics
Delegative leadership, referred to by many as laissez-faire leadership, is a less intrusive style
where a leader delegates tasks and initiatives to individual team members. Delegative leadership
is considered less intrusive because it gives more control and power to the team.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 9
Delegative leadership requires leaders to trust their employees and their skills. Delegative
leadership is primarily hands-off and can only be successful and sustainable when there is
complete trust between a leader and their employees. Delegative leaders refrain from
micromanaging tasks and allow team members to rely on their judgment for the best actions and
strategies.
Delegative leadership can be successful if a team is composed of members that are consistently
reliable and take responsibility for the work they present. While delegative leadership is a
valuable leadership style for many, the laid-back attitude can be challenging for some employees
to adapt to, making it essential to have open communication and familiarity between team
members.
2. How delegative leadership can change you and your career
Though a laissez-faire approach might seem like the leader isn’t doing any work, this is far from
the truth for successful delegative leaders. Delegative leadership benefits your career and
reputation amongst colleagues when executed correctly. While finding a balance between
allowing your employees to be independent and remaining somewhat involved is challenging for
some, the results can be advantageous.
Delegative leadership still requires leaders to support and train team members. You gain respect
as a leader when your employees successfully navigate their own tasks based on your training
and guidance. Additionally, delegative leaders often find success by guiding a project’s start and
allowing employees to take what they’ve learned and implement it into their work.
Delegative leadership reflects positively on you and your team members and builds trust between
everyone. By mastering this leadership style, your team will learn to think independently while
still collaborating and getting feedback from their coworkers. This style can be excellent for
building trust and open communication between employees. When successful, delegative
leadership will show that your company is reputable for its actions and the accomplishments and
skills of every person in your organization.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 10
3. The benefits of using a delegative leadership style
A delegative leader stands to benefit massively when successfully implementing this unique
style. There are various benefits your company will gain if you master delegative leadership and
your team adapts to a hands-off approach where they have as much influence on a project as
everyone else. Below are some ways delegative leadership can benefit your organization and
help produce high-quality work.
Delegative leadership boosts creativity
Delegative leadership is essential to strengthening creativity among your employees. By stepping
back and putting more power and control into your employees’ hands, you encourage them to
think creatively and independently. Whereas other leadership styles require employees to follow
specific guidelines, delegative leadership highlights each employee’s unique skills and
demonstrates innovation.
Delegative leadership requires fast decision-making on behalf of each employee. While this can
be stressful at first, as you and your employees begin to adapt, you will find that decision-making
becomes easier as employees are encouraged to exercise their creativity at all times. If your
organization lacks innovative ideas, stepping back and delegating tasks to your team members
can encourage newfound creativity.
Delegative leadership encourages employee growth
Along with boosting employee creativity and innovation, delegative leadership promotes
individual employee growth. By delegating tasks to your employees, you encourage them to take
responsibility and accountability for their work and become more involved in your business.
Delegative leadership encourages employees to be confident in their abilities and recognize their
unique contributions to the company. Employees under a delegative leader learn to trust
themselves and understand the value of their work.
With this leadership style, employees will identify their strengths and weaknesses and can craft
an effective strategy to improve in areas lacking. Instilling confidence in employees is crucial for
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 11
any organization to succeed, and delegative leadership is a fantastic way to nudge employees
toward recognizing their capabilities.
Delegative leadership strengthens employee satisfaction
When a leader successfully implements a delegative leadership style, the organization can
improve immensely regarding employee satisfaction. Giving employees the power to recognize
their talents will make them feel more valued by your organization and boost their overall
performance and satisfaction with your company.
Delegative leadership emphasizes the individuality of each employee while still encouraging
teamwork and allowing individual employees to bring their unique contributions to the table. By
encouraging employees to recognize their skills and giving them the freedom to conduct tasks
based on their judgment, your team will be comfortable with their work and satisfied with their
position in the company.
4. How can you become a delegative leader?
You can begin taking steps toward implementing a delegative leadership style in your
organization and encouraging employees to take more responsibility. However, because of the
hands-off nature of delegative leadership and because many people are unfamiliar with working
with this style, it’s essential to understand how to become a delegative leader and succeed.
Though you might step back once your employees start working, thorough training and guidance
are necessary at the start of a project. Without giving employees any information, delegative
leadership will not be successful when executed.
Additionally, set strict deadlines for each employee and individual tasks. A laissez-faire
leadership style will fail if you don’t state your expectations, and perhaps the most important
expectation of communicating to your employees is deadlines. Without a timeline for their work,
employees will feel comfortable postponing their tasks and neglecting work because you aren’t
watching over them.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 12
Delegative leadership requires you to trust your employees and establishing a foundation of trust
before thoroughly implementing this style is crucial. Finally, delegative leaders must know when
to intervene. No matter how skilled your employees are, there is always a chance for something
to go wrong, especially as everyone adapts to this style. Take charge if something seems off, an
incomplete project, or worsened employee performance.
Authoritative leaders are often referred to as visionary. Leaders who adopt this style consider
themselves mentors to their followers. Not to be confused with authoritarian leadership,
authoritative leadership emphasizes a “follow me” approach. This way, leaders chart a course
and encourage those around them to follow.
Leaders who display authoritative traits tend to motivate and inspire those around them. They
provide overall direction and provide their teams with guidance, feedback, and motivation. This
promotes a sense of accomplishment or achievement.
The authoritative leadership style relies heavily on getting to know each team member. This
allows a leader to provide guidance and feedback on a more personalized level, helping
individuals to succeed. This means authoritative leaders need to be able to adapt, particularly as
the size of their team grows.
Authoritative leadership is very hands-on, but leaders must be cautious not to micromanage. This
is a tendency with this style, which can be overbearing for team members and create negative
sentiments.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 13
Authoritative Leadership
Everything you need to know about Authoritative Leadership
Authoritative Leadership
A concrete leadership style is essential to helping your organization and its employees succeed.
Company leaders and those interested in pursuing leadership must identify their primary
leadership style to understand how they want to guide their company.
An authoritative leader has unique strengths and characteristics that allow them to foster
company growth. Knowing the characteristics and benefits of authoritative leadership is essential
to determine if this style is best for you. This article will describe everything about authoritative
leadership before implementing a leadership style.
Get a complete view of what Authoritative Leadership is:
What is authoritative leadership?
How authoritative leadership can change you and your career
What are the benefits of using an authoritative leadership style
How can you become an authoritative leader?
Ready to start your Authoritative Leadership journey and give a boost to your career?
1. What is authoritative leadership and what are its key characteristics
Authoritative leadership is a leadership style that takes a hands-on approach to guide an
organization and its employees. Authoritative leaders act as mentors for their employees and
work to inspire the team. Often referred to as visionary, authoritative leaders encourage
employees to follow their lead and guide them toward success.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 14
Authoritative leaders are vastly different from leaders who take on an authoritarian attitude.
While authoritative leadership is hands-on, the leader charts a course and encourages their
employees to follow and grow along with them.
Authoritative leaders motivate their teams to do their best and ensure that employees have a clear
direction in work, along with offering guidance for those uncertain of their performance.
Authoritative leaders offer feedback that is motivating rather than overly-harsh criticism.
Authoritative leadership relies on communicating and getting along with team members. Open
communication, understanding, and familiarity with one another are essential to a successful
authoritative leadership strategy. Authoritative leaders help their teams succeed and encourage
them to keep trying when they make mistakes
2. How authoritative leadership can change you and your career
Authoritative leadership can help you grow your career and strengthen employee relationships. If
your career requires quick turnarounds for projects, experiences emergencies, or wants to boost
productivity, authoritative leadership can help you guide your team to handle whatever comes
your way.
Authoritative leadership can help create a more efficient work environment and encourage high-
quality, error-free work. As an authoritative leader, you learn to make quick decisions and
always think ahead, which is incredibly valuable to any business. An authoritative leadership
style can help you act fast while paying attention to detail and guiding your employees to follow
your lead.
Additionally, authoritative leadership can boost your career by encouraging stronger bonds
between you and your employees. By positioning yourself as an authoritative figure, you ask
your employees to trust you to guide them. A deeper bond is formed between everyone in your
workplace by putting their trust in you.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 15
Authoritative leadership encourages you to take an empathetic approach and requires that you
understand and validate employee emotions while guiding them down the right path.
Authoritative leadership strengthens your work ethic and helps you envision your organization’s
future.
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3. The benefits of using an authoritative leadership style
You and your organization can grow exponentially with a successful approach to authoritative
leadership. An authoritative leadership strategy can lead to consistently high-quality, accurate,
and timely work. Below are the primary benefits of authoritative leadership to consider if you are
interested in adopting this leadership style.
Authoritative leadership provides clarity
One of the primary benefits of authoritative leadership is its ability to provide clarity within an
organization. Authoritative leaders give their teams a clear and actionable vision of the
company’s goals and growth potential. Authoritative leaders understand the company and can
strategize and think ahead to prepare for the organization’s future.
Authoritative leadership is also beneficial because it encourages open communication when
something isn’t clear. Employees can follow the guidance of an authoritative leader when they
are confused or conflicted over their tasks. The authoritative leader oversees everything to
guarantee everyone is on the same wavelength and moving toward the same goal.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 16
Authoritative leadership encourages trust and empathy
Authoritative leadership is beneficial to encouraging trust between you and your employees
while remaining empathetic to their struggles. Authoritative leadership requires that you inspire
your employees and form a bond with them to ensure that they trust your vision for the company.
Authoritative leaders can encourage employees to follow them willingly through positive
reinforcement and a visionary approach. With solid trust between the leader and employees,
authoritative leadership can be successful.
Authoritative leadership is the perfect fit for organizations where employees require a clear
direction and knowledge of their work. This style encourages high-quality work and helps
employees perform their best. Employees will follow an authoritative leader when they trust the
leader to guide them toward success.
Authoritative leadership promotes consistent results in less time
Authoritative leadership sets clear standards and guidelines for an organization’s employees.
When implemented successfully, authoritative leadership will promote consistent, high-quality
results in less time than before. With your guidance, employees can confidently take on any task
and develop new strategies to achieve their work goals.
By confidently leading your team toward a unified vision, you can ensure success and achieve
your organizational goals. Additionally, authoritative leaders know how to take quick action and
make decisions to promote high-quality results that take less time to complete. A comprehensive
authoritative leadership plan will guarantee that your work is on time, every time.
4. How can you become an authoritative leader?
If your organization is suitable for an authoritative leadership style, you can begin by taking a
few steps toward becoming a successful authoritative leader. To begin your journey towards
authoritative leadership, you must identify the strengths and weaknesses in your organization.
Authoritative leaders should focus on weaknesses in their organization, such as late work and
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 17
unclear expectations. When you identify what needs to change, you can understand your
purpose.
Becoming an authoritative leader also requires interacting and communicating with your
employees as often as possible. Authoritative leaders cannot take on the detached style of
delegative leadership–overseeing everything and getting involved with your team is essential.
Knowing your team members and their strengths can help you address their unique contributions
to your organization and determine a path forward.
When developing an authoritative leadership plan, ensure you know why you’re taking specific
actions. This style might be new to many of your employees, and they will likely ask questions.
As you guide them through the process and toward success, be prepared to explain issues you’ve
noticed and detail how your solution will benefit them and the organization.
Transactional leadership, often referred to as managerial leadership, is a leadership style that
relies on rewards and punishments. This leadership style clearly emphasizes structure, assuming
individuals may not possess the motivation needed to complete their tasks.
With this reward-based system, a leader sets clear team goals or tasks. Leaders also clarify how
their teams will be rewarded (or punished) for their work. Rewards can take many formats but
typically involve financial recompenses, such as pay or a bonus.
This “give and take” leadership style is more concerned with efficiently following established
routines and procedures than making transformational organizational changes.
Transactional leadership establishes roles and responsibilities for each employee. However, it
can lead to diminishing returns if employees are always aware of how much their effort is worth.
Therefore, incentives must be consistent with company goals and supported by additional
gestures of appreciation.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 18
Transactional Leadership
Everything you need to know about Transactional Leadership
Transactional Leadership
Finding a leadership style that works for you is challenging for many business leaders. As you
search for the best way to guide your employees, you will likely encounter five different styles:
transformational, delegative, participative, authoritative, and transactional leadership.
These styles have unique advantages that can help you grow as a leader. However, determining
which style is best for your organization is essential to guide your employees successfully. This
article will cover transactional leadership, its benefits, and how to become a transactional leader.
Get a complete view of what Transactional Leadership is:
1. What is transactional leadership
2. How transactional leadership can change you and your career
3. What are the benefits of using a transactional leadership style
4. How can you become a transactional leader?
1. What is transactional leadership and what are its key characteristics
Transactional leadership, also known as managerial leadership, relies on rewards and
punishments. Transactional leadership prioritizes structured tasks with clear guidelines to ensure
that employees stay on task with minimal error. Transactional leaders often implement this style
to prevent employees from losing motivation to complete their tasks.
Transactional leaders use a reward-based system to give their teams specific goals and tasks.
When providing these guidelines, transactional leaders emphasize the potential for the employees
to receive a reward, most often with monetary value. Offering rewards help transactional leaders
keep their employees motivated to ensure that work is high-quality and on time.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 19
The “give and take” method in transactional leadership establishes specific roles and
responsibilities for each employee and rewards employees based on effort, outcome, and success.
The transactional leadership style requires structure to be successful.
2. How transactional leadership can change you and your career
Transactional leadership helps progress your career by encouraging you to take a practical
leadership approach. Transactional leaders are deeply sourced in consistently creating a structure
that works within an organization and following that structure.
You and your organization will benefit immensely when you successfully execute a
transformational leadership style. Transactional leadership helps you strengthen your
communication style between yourself and your employees. You will understand how to clearly
express your expectations from each employee and master a direct, transparent communication
style.
Being a transactional leader entails fast and confident decision-making on your behalf.
Transactional leadership can help you and your organization manage crises. With transactional
leadership comes newfound confidence in your executive abilities.
3. The benefits of using a transactional leadership style
Transactional leadership has the potential to benefit you and your business substantially.
Understanding why transactional leadership is a beneficial strategy and a valuable option for
identifying your leadership style is essential. Below are the primary benefits of a transactional
leadership style.
Transactional leadership encourages fairness among team members
When employees feel like favoritism is involved in their success, tensions arise in organizations.
Whereas other leadership styles could strengthen these sentiments, transactional leadership
encourages fairness and peace.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 20
By implementing a rewards system where each employee has an equal opportunity to succeed,
you eliminate any doubt employees have over perceived favoritism that you have for specific
members. With transactional leadership, all employees are on equal footing.
Transactional leadership implements a simple and structured system
Transactional leadership is one of the most straightforward styles for employees to stay on track
and motivated. As a transactional leader, you provide employees with specific roles and require
them to follow a structured framework for their tasks.
Transactional leadership is effective because all employees understand the organization’s
definition of success and the expectations of each employee. This style ensures that every
employee understands their job and has no questions about their work or role. Transactional
leaders provide employees with a singular goal for success, and each employee knows what they
can gain or lose if they do not reach performance standards.
Transactional leadership is motivational for employees
A rewards-based system is a huge motivator for employees and encourages them to complete
their work efficiently and flawlessly. Transactional leadership utilizes rewards to guarantee that
employees are always performing their best. Transactional leadership does not implement any
structural changes to be successful but instead uses compensation to push the company forward
and continue growing.
Successfully implementing a transactional leadership style motivates employees to produce high-
quality work and makes them feel like valued team members. This leadership style demonstrates
the importance of their contributions. No matter how rigid you keep the structure of your
organization, rewards and recognition show employees that they aren’t insignificant and that the
business is better because of their contributions.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 21
4. How can you become a transactional leader?
Transactional leadership benefits any organization hoping to improve its structure and
functionality. If a transactional leadership style suits your organization, there are vital steps to
becoming a transactional leader. Becoming a transactional leader begins by creating an
unwavering structure to guide your employees.
Implementing structure in your organization is possible by giving individual employees clear
tasks to complete with high expectations for the quality of their work. The rewards-based system
in transactional leadership ensures that no one goes against the typical structure and that all
leaders and employees remain on the same wavelength.
Becoming a transactional leader also requires advanced communication skills. Communication is
essential to implementing and reinforcing structure within an organization. To be a successful
transactional leader, you must remain transparent with your employees. Share your expectations
and ensure that all employees follow your exact guidelines. As you implement a transactional
strategy and employees adapt to this new system, continuously check that everyone is on the
same page.
Once your employees are comfortable with your transactional leadership style, you can begin
recognizing top-performing employees and offering monetary rewards, such as a bonus.
Recognizing your employees will keep them motivated and guarantee they continue performing
at their best.
Additionally, recognizing employees makes them feel proud of their work and helps them build a
bond with you. When you recognize an employee’s hard work, they feel more comfortable with
you and more confident in their abilities. A leader’s recognition lets employees know they are
valued and appreciated. The transactional leadership style helps form bonds between leader and
employee, strengthens communication, and boosts workplace morale.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 22
Sometimes referred to as democratic leadership, participative leadership is a leadership style that
encourages leaders to listen to their employees and involve them in the decision-making process.
This leadership style requires leaders to be inclusive, utilize good communication skills, and,
crucially, be able to share power/responsibility.
When a leader adopts a participative leadership style, this encourages collaboration through
accountability. This often leads to a collective effort of a team to identify problems and develop
solutions instead of assigning individual blame.
This leadership style has historically been prevalent and utilized by many leaders in many
organizations. However, as working habits have changed (accelerated by the COVID-19
pandemic) and teams have become more decentralized, this leadership style is more complicated.
Spontaneous, open, and candid communication is often associated with a participative leadership
style. Remote working or virtual teams can make this particularly challenging to maintain.
Participative leadership is often favored as it helps to build trust with employees. Empowering
them and encouraging them to share their ideas on essential matters, demonstrating their value to
a team.
Participative Leadership
Leadership style can make or break your organization. Identifying the leadership style best suited
to your skills and your organization’s needs can help you reach your goals and set your business
up for a prosperous future. When implementing a specific leadership style, you have a
framework for growing your business and a clear direction for reaching specific goals.
Business leaders typically fall into one of five leadership styles: transformational, delegative,
authoritative, transactional, and participative leadership. Participative leadership has unique
benefits and purposes that could help you structure your organization and lead confidently. This
article will discuss participative leadership, its benefits, and how to become a participative
leader.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 23
Get a complete view of what Participative Leadership is:
1. What is participative leadership
2. How participative leadership can change you and your career
3. What are the benefits of using a participative leadership style
4. How can you become a participative leader?
1. What is participative leadership and what are its key characteristics
Participative leadership is a unique leadership style, also known as democratic leadership.
Participative leaders guide their employees while encouraging them to provide feedback and
participate in decision-making. Participative leaders recognize employees’ significant role in
their organization’s success. They promote transparent communication, collaborative solutions,
and inclusivity.
Participative leaders share much of their responsibilities with employees, creating an even
playing field where all employees contribute to decisions. Participative leadership requires team
effort and accountability–no individual is assigned blame when problems arise.
Candid communication dominates the participative leadership style, and employees are
encouraged to be honest and communicate their genuine concerns or suggestions with the rest of
the team. Participative leadership promotes a deep trust between leaders and employees, and its
emphasis on teams instead of the individual makes it an effective leadership style.
2. How participative leadership can change you and your career
Participative leadership can help improve your work ethic and habits while driving growth in
your organization. Getting feedback and collaborating with people you trust will help you see
your business differently, allowing you to conceptualize ideas you never considered.
Participative leadership sets you up for a successful career because it requires you to understand
the value of teamwork and helps you grow comfortable adapting to new environments and
situations. Your organization will change for the better with a successful participative leadership
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 24
strategy. Organizations following a participative leadership style can significantly improve their
performance as a collective while encouraging creativity and individuality.
3. The benefits of using a participative leadership style
Participative leadership can bring a team together and produce excellent results correctly. If you
want to strengthen relationships within your organization and value collaboration, consider the
many benefits of a participative leadership style. Below are examples of some benefits to expect
with a participative leadership style.
Participative leadership encourages engagement
Many organizations need more engagement between team members, and engagement and
collaboration are stunted when a single person makes all significant decisions. Though a stricter
leadership style works for some organizations, participative leadership highlights the potential to
grow as a company through engagement with all employees.
Participative leadership keeps employees involved and makes them feel like valued members of
your organization. It reinforces the idea that every part of an organization matters and that each
employee holds unique skills and value. When employees are comfortable contributing to
collaborative discussions, they become more passionate about the organization, more confident
in their roles, and more satisfied with the company’s direction.
Participative leadership boosts creativity
Creativity is valuable for any organization, and participative leadership encourages creativity
more than other leadership styles. When leaders open themselves up to the ideas and advice of
others, they can expand their understanding of an organization and develop new, innovative
strategies.
Allowing every team member to share their ideas and contribute to the decision-making process
means you will have many creative ideas to incorporate into a strategy. This expanded creativity
is essential because it contributes to improved, efficient problem-solving and ensures that a
leader always has options to grow the organization.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 25
Participative leadership improves morale
Keeping employees motivated and excited about their work is crucial to increase retention rates
and planning for the long-term future of an organization. Participative leadership is one of the
best ways a leader can boost employee morale because it makes every employee feel like they
belong. Many employees feel isolated and directionless without teamwork and communication,
creating barriers between team members. Participative leadership fixes these issues by fostering
a community.
Simply put, participative leadership lets employees know they are valued and have influence
within the company, making them comfortable sharing their ideas with you and your team and
placing all workers on equal footing. By keeping morale high, your employees will continue
contributing and staying motivated to help your organization thrive.
4. How can you become a participative leader?
A participative leadership style can significantly benefit many organizations and should be
considered a viable option as you explore individual styles. If a participative leadership style is
suitable for your goals and intentions as a leader, you can implement new strategies in a few
ways.
Implementing participative leadership methods starts by creating open communication.
Encourage employees to collaborate during meetings and share their ideas without judgment. To
ease employees into the transitional process, leaders can begin by gathering ideas through
anonymous surveys to determine how valued each employee feels within an organization.
Opening collaboration between team members is one of many steps to a successful participative
leadership strategy. Once transparent communication begins, you can step back and let
employees collaborate, intervening when necessary. Having meetings where you oversee the
discussion but do not influence it lets employees know that their thoughts are essential to the
organization’s overall success. Utilizing some of these strategies can build a solid foundation for
participative leadership within your organization.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 26
If you pursue a participative leadership style to manage your organization, always remember that
each employee matters as much as you do in decision-making. Ensure that you aren’t dismissing
anyone’s opinion or diminishing their contributions.
Servant leadership is a leadership style that puts the needs of others first. It emphasizes creating
strong relationships with those around you and focuses on enabling them to reach their full
potential. As a leader, it requires focusing on understanding the people you are working with and
developing their abilities, while also setting a good example and understanding their personal
goals.
At its core, servant leadership is about ethical decision making; if one follows this model they
will be more likely to make decisions based on what is right for everyone involved, rather than
just benefitting a select few. This approach fosters an environment where creativity and problem-
solving thrive as team members feel empowered to suggest new solutions and build upon each
other’s ideas.
Furthermore, following the principles of servant leadership can result in improved
communication between all involved parties – from senior management to front-line employees.
By taking into account the opinions of subordinates, leaders can prevent any potential conflicts
while maintaining both healthy relationships and peaceful work environments. Ultimately, these
qualities help create a stronger sense of loyalty amongst team members which consequently
leads to increased productivity overall.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 27
Servant Leadership
Servant leadership is a concept that has been gaining more traction in the business world due to
its emphasis on creating strong relationships between leaders and their teams.
The concept has existed for centuries, although Robert K. Greenleaf first formalized it in his
1970 essay: “The Servant as Leader”. This essay sparked a revolution and marked the beginning
of a new era for leadership – one based on service, kindness, and trust. The idea behind servant
leadership is to lead with humility and selflessness rather than domination or power. By putting
the needs of others before their own, servant leaders strive to create a productive work
environment while ensuring their team members reach their highest potential.
Get a complete view of what Servant Leadership is:
1. The pros of Servant Leadership
2. The cons of Servant Leadership
3. How to implement Servant Leadership: 9 Steps
4. Three Things to remember about Servant Leadership
1. The pros of Servant Leadership
Servant leaders act not only as supervisors but also as facilitators who motivate and inspire their
subordinates to achieve excellence. Servant leadership’s focus on fostering collaboration,
building trust, and developing team members makes it an attractive way for organizations to
cultivate high-performing teams.
When it comes to the pros of servant leadership, several unique benefits come with this
approach:
Positive Atmosphere
Employees who work under a leader who is focused on helping them to be better professionals
are more likely to be productive and engaged with their work. The supportive environment these
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 28
types of leaders foster can also lead to increased creativity among team members and improved
communication, which helps everyone understand each other better.
Increased Motivation
Another benefit of servant leadership is that employees working under these leaders often
become more motivated since they have someone at the top whom they respect and feel inspired
by.
Better Decisions
Servant Leadership encourages team members to think independently while remaining connected
to make decisions collaboratively. This results in smarter solutions arriving faster since
everybody’s thoughts and ideas can be considered without anyone feeling overwhelmed or left
out.
Greater Job Satisfaction
Servant leaders create an environment where team members are valued and respected, which can
lead to greater job satisfaction. This can result in lower turnover rates and more loyalty to the
organization.
Improved Communication
Servant leaders focus on listening and empathizing with team members, which can lead to
improved communication and greater understanding among team members. This can make it
easier to resolve conflicts and work together effectively.
Greater Ethical Standards
Servant leaders prioritize the needs of their employees, customers, and other stakeholders, rather
than just focusing on profits or other short-term goals. This can lead to a more ethical and
socially responsible organization that is better able to meet the needs of its stakeholders over the
long term.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 29
Stronger Teamwork
Servant leaders encourage collaboration and teamwork, leading to stronger relationships and a
more cohesive team. This can result in improved efficiency and greater productivity.
Empowerment
Servant leaders empower their team members to take on leadership roles and make decisions,
which can lead to greater ownership and accountability among team members. This can result in
greater creativity, innovation, and problem-solving skills.
In summary, servant leadership brings many benefits to an organization, including a positive
atmosphere, increased motivation, better decision-making, greater job satisfaction, improved
communication, greater ethical standards, stronger teamwork, and empowerment. These factors
can ultimately lead to a more productive, engaged, and successful organization.
2. The cons of Servant Leadership
Despite all its advantages, there are some drawbacks to servant leadership as well. These include:
Lack of Results Focus
These types of leaders tend to be less demanding regarding results because they want to ensure
their teams are happy and content. As a result, there might be times when performance goals are
unmet or individuals who could have accomplished more don’t reach their true potential because
of this leniency.
Difficulty Connecting with Leaders
Some people may find it challenging to connect with such a leader if they’re used to traditional
methods of management which rely on intimidation rather than mutual respect.
Potential for Passivity
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 30
Servant leaders are known for being humble, compassionate, and selfless, which can sometimes
lead to passivity. They may avoid taking a firm stance or making difficult decisions, making it
hard for the organization to move forward decisively.
Limited Control
Servant leaders tend to give their team members more autonomy and decision-making power,
which can lead to a lack of control over the overall direction of the organization. This can make
it challenging to achieve a shared vision or to implement large-scale changes.
Difficulty in Scaling
Servant leadership works best in small teams or organizations where the leader can easily
connect with each team member. It can be difficult to scale this approach to larger organizations
where the leader may not have the same level of direct contact with each employee.
Resistance to Change
Servant leadership is a relatively new concept, and not all employees or organizations may be
open to this new way of leading. There may be resistance to change among employees who are
used to a more traditional, hierarchical leadership style.
Risk of Being Taken Advantage Of
Servant leaders put the needs of their team members above their own, which can sometimes lead
to them being taken advantage of by their team members. They may be more likely to put up
with poor performance or bad behavior from team members, which can ultimately harm the
organization.
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with IMD.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 31
3. How to implement Servant Leadership: 9 Steps
Fortunately, organizations can take steps towards implementing servant leadership successfully
to avoid its drawbacks while getting the most out of its benefits. Here are some tips for
successful implementation:
1. Evaluate Existing Practices
Start by evaluating existing managerial practices and identify any areas where improvement
needs to take place for servant leadership principles to thrive.
2. Provide Training & Recognition Programs
Invest in providing staff with training in areas such as communication and collaboration so
they’re better equipped when dealing with each other or having open discussions about various
topics related to employee satisfaction. Additionally, provide rewards or recognition programs
that recognize those who go above and beyond expectations set by managers and peers alike.
3. Encourage Open Dialogue & Transparency:
Create an environment where dialogue between team members is encouraged regardless of one’s
position — from the bottom up — so everyone feels like they have ownership over contributing
ideas or solutions when necessary without fear of reprisal from higher-ups. Also, ensure
transparency between all involved parties so information sharing becomes part of the natural
culture within the organization instead of feeling forced or uncomfortable for anyone concerned.
4. Focus on Feedback & Development Opportunities
Maintain an ongoing dialogue between management and staff by offering regular feedback
sessions concerning individual performance, strengths/weaknesses, etc., while also providing
development opportunities allowing personnel to hone skillsets needed to grow professionally
long-term basis.
5. Empower Employees
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 32
Give employees the autonomy and resources to take on leadership roles and make decisions.
This will help them feel more engaged and motivated, and it will also help the organization to
become more flexible and responsive to changing circumstances.
6. Lead by Example
As a servant leader, it’s essential to lead by example. Demonstrating the values and behaviors
that you want to see in your team members will help to create a culture of servant leadership
throughout the organization.
7. Encourage Collaboration
Encourage collaboration and teamwork by creating opportunities for team members to work
together on projects and by recognizing and rewarding team efforts. This will help to build
stronger relationships and a more cohesive team.
8. Communicate the Vision
Communicate the vision and mission of the organization, and make sure that everyone
understands how their role fits into the overall goals of the organization. This will help to create
a sense of shared purpose and motivation among team members.
9. Regularly Review Progress
Regularly review progress and make adjustments as needed. Monitor the effectiveness of the
servant leadership approach, gather feedback from team members, and make changes as
necessary. This will help to ensure that the organization is constantly improving and moving in
the right direction.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 33
4. Three Things to remember about Servant Leadership
What Servant Leadership is
Servant leadership is a philosophy and approach that puts the needs of others before your own.
By focusing on service, humility, and trust in the workplace, servant leaders can create a
productive and collaborative environment where everyone can thrive.
Implementing this leadership style requires commitment from both leader and team members
alike, but it is an effective way to foster collaboration and success. With the right actions,
support and dedication, servant leaders can help to take their teams—and their organization—to
the next level.
The Pros
Servant leadership can lead to a more ethical and socially responsible organization, as it
prioritizes the needs of the employees, customers, and other stakeholders.
This approach can also increase employee motivation and job satisfaction, which in turn can
result in lower turnover rates and higher commitment and loyalty to the organization.
The benefits of servant leadership are also evident in better decision-making, as it encourages
independent thinking and collaboration among team members.
The Cons
As with any leadership approach, there are also some potential downsides to servant
leadership. It can be challenging to implement in organizations that are highly hierarchical or
that have a strong “command and control” culture.
Leaders need to be aware of these potential drawbacks and find ways to mitigate them, such as
setting clear performance goals, creating a culture that values mutual respect, and being prepared
to make difficult decisions when necessary.
Conclusion
In conclusion, servant leadership is a leadership style based on serving others and putting the
needs of employees, customers, and other stakeholders first. It can lead to a more engaged,
motivated, and productive workforce, better decision-making, and a more ethical and socially
responsible organization.
Implementing servant leadership requires a change in culture and mindset, training and
development opportunities, open dialogue, transparency, focus on feedback and development
opportunities, empowering employees, leading by example, encouraging collaboration and
communication of the vision, and regularly reviewing progress.
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 34
While it may have its challenges, the benefits of servant leadership make it a practical approach
for any organization looking to improve its performance, employee satisfaction, and overall
success.
How to find your leadership style?
Choosing a leadership style that works for you can make you a more effective leader. Whether
you manage a large or small team, your leadership style heavily impacts how your team sees
you. Here are a few points that can help you get started.
Firstly, being clear about your goals and what you want to achieve is essential. Once you have a
clear vision, it will be easier to communicate your ideas to your team and inspire them to follow
your lead.
Secondly, experiment! There are many different leadership styles, and the best way to find your
own is to experiment with different approaches and see what works best for you and your team.
Finally, remember that leadership is not about being perfect but authentically leading. When you
lead from a place of passion and purpose, others will naturally be drawn to you and your
message. Remember, as a leader, it is vitally important to be open to (and to seek actively)
feedback and be willing to adjust your approach as needed.
Which style resonated with you? Do you think that your current leadership style is effective?
Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 35
The 8 key leadership skills you need to
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Find the Road to Good Leadership.docx

  • 1. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 1
  • 2. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 2 Leadership in itself is a somewhat fluid principle. Generally, most leaders adapt their leadership styles to suit their situation. This is particularly true the longer they lead; they adapt their leadership style as they learn and engage with their employees. To become a more successful leader, leaders must understand their current leadership style. In this article, we’ll answer the question “what a leadership style?”, and then look at 6 of the most common leadership styles and their effectiveness. TABLE OF CONTENT In This Article We will look at The six most common leadership styles are: 1. Transformational Leadership 2. Delegative Leadership 3. Authoritative Leadership 4. Transactional Leadership 5. Participative Leadership 6. Servant Leadership How to Know The leadership style of your Leaders? Detailed feedback is one easy way to know your leadership style. Asking those who you lead to provide you with open and honest feedback is a helpful exercise. Doing so will allow you to adapt your style's characteristics within your day-to-day responsibilities as a leader.
  • 3. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 3 A leadership style refers to a leader’s methods, characteristics, and behaviors when directing, motivating, and managing their teams. A leader’s style is shaped by a variety of factors, including personality, values, skills, and experiences, and can have a significant impact on the effectiveness of their leadership. Their leadership style also determines how leaders develop their strategy, implement plans and respond to changes while managing stakeholders’ expectations and their team’s well-being. In many cases leaders will express a wide-range of leadership styles – and will likely adapt this dependent on their situation. However, leader will often have one pre-eminent style that they tend to express more often. As a leader, understanding your leadership style is critically important. When you understand your leadership style, you can determine how this affects those you directly influence. It also helps you find your leadership strengths and define which leadership skills to develop. Some leaders can already categorize their current leadership style, recognizing whether this makes them effective. Or how their employees see them. But it is not always so defined. It is usually the case that leaders can categorize their style; however, they often exhibit traits of many other leadership styles. Detailed feedback is one easy way to know your leadership style. Asking those who you lead to provide you with open and honest feedback is a helpful exercise. Doing so will allow you to adapt your style’s characteristics within your day-to-day responsibilities as a leader.
  • 4. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 4 We’ve likely all been in a group situation where someone took control, communicating with the group and creating a shared vision. Creating unity, developing bonds, creating energy, and instilling passion. This person is very likely to be considered a transformational leader. Transformational leadership is a leadership style that emphasizes change and transformation. Leaders who adopt this approach strive to inspire their followers to achieve more than they ever thought possible by tapping into their potential. This type of leadership can be highly effective in organizations looking to make significant changes or transformations. Some of the key characteristics of transformational leadership include: A focus on the future: Transformational leaders always look ahead and think about what needs to be done to achieve the organization’s goals. They inspire their followers to do the same. A focus on change: Transformational leaders are comfortable with change and understand it is necessary for organizational success. They work to ensure their followers are comfortable with change and can adapt to it. A focus on people: Transformational leaders see the potential in every one of their followers. They strive to develop their followers’ individual strengths and abilities so that they can reach their full potential.
  • 5. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 5 Transformational Leadership Transformational leadership is a style of leadership that has become increasingly popular in recent years. Leaders who use this approach strive to inspire their followers to achieve more than they ever thought possible by tapping into their individual potential. This type of leadership can be extremely effective in organizations that are looking to make major changes or transformations. Get a complete view of what Transformational Leadership is: 1. What is transformational leadership and what are its key characteristics 2. How can a transformational leader inspire their followers to achieve more than they ever thought possible 3. What are some of the benefits of using a transformational leadership style 4. How can you become a transformational leader? 1. What is transformational leadership and what are its key characteristics Transformational leadership is a style of leadership that emphasizes change and transformation. Leaders who use this approach strive to inspire their followers to achieve more than they ever thought possible by tapping into their individual potential. This type of leadership can be extremely effective in organizations that are looking to make major changes or transformations. Some of the key characteristics of transformational leadership include: A focus on the future: Transformational leaders are always looking ahead and thinking about what needs to be done in order to achieve the organization’s goals. They inspire their followers to do the same.
  • 6. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 6 A focus on change: Transformational leaders are comfortable with change and understand that it is necessary for organizational success. They work to ensure that their followers are also comfortable with change and are able to adapt to it. A focus on people: Transformational leaders see the potential in each and every one of their followers. They strive to develop their followers’ individual strengths and abilities so that they can reach their full potential. 2. How can a transformational leader inspire their followers to achieve more than they ever thought possible Transformational leaders are able to inspire their followers to achieve more than they ever thought possible by tapping into their individual potential. They focus on the future and work to ensure that their followers are comfortable with change. Additionally, they see the potential in each and every one of their followers and strive to develop their individual strengths and abilities. This approach can be extremely effective in organizations that are looking to make major changes or transformations. 3. What are some of the benefits of using a transformational leadership style There are many benefits of using a transformational leadership style. Some of the key benefits include:  Increased creativity and innovation: When leaders focus on change and transformation, it encourages their followers to be creative and come up with new ideas.  Improved performance: Transformational leadership can inspire followers to achieve more than they ever thought possible. This can lead to improved performance within the organization.
  • 7. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 7  Greater motivation: Transformational leaders are able to motivate their followers by tapping into their individual potential. This type of motivation can lead to increased productivity and engagement.  Better communication: Transformational leaders typically have excellent communication skills. This allows them to effectively communicate their vision and inspire their followers.  Stronger relationships: Transformational leaders often build strong relationships with their followers. This can lead to increased trust and loyalty. 4. How can you become a transformational leader? In order to become a transformational leader, you need to focus on the future, be comfortable with change, and focus on people. Additionally, you need to have excellent communication skills and be able to inspire your followers. If you are able to focus on these key characteristics, you will be able to successfully lead an organization through change and transformation. Are you looking to become a transformational leader? Do you have what it takes? Use the tips in this article to start developing your transformational leadership skills. Discover the Transformational Leader program by IMD and unlock you full leadership potential. Often referred to as “laissez-faire,” a delegative leadership style focuses on delegating initiative to team members. This is generally known as one of the least intrusive forms of leadership; this translates to “let them do.” This is therefore considered a very hand-off leadership style. Leaders who adopt this style have trust and rely on their employees to do their jobs. They don’t micromanage or get too involved in providing feedback or guidance. Instead, delegative leaders allow employees to utilize their creativity, resources, and experience to help them meet their goals.
  • 8. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 8 This can be a successful leadership strategy if team members are competent and take responsibility for their work. However, delegative leadership can also lead to disagreements among team members and may split or divide a group. It can be challenging for newcomers to adapt to this style of leadership or staff members to develop an understanding of who is ultimately in charge and responsible for outcomes. Therefore, this leadership style must be kept in check. Delegative Leadership Identifying your preferred leadership style is the best way to cement yourself as a knowledgeable and successful leader. All leaders and those interested in becoming leaders must understand the different leadership styles: transformational, authoritative, transactional, participative, and delegative leadership. Each leadership style has unique characteristics, benefits, and potential to help grow your career. This article will cover delegative leadership to help you determine if this style is best for you. Get a complete view of what Delegative Leadership is: 1. What is delegative leadership 2. How delegative leadership can change you and your career 3. What are the benefits of using a delegative leadership style 4. How can you become a delegative leader? what are its key characteristics Delegative leadership, referred to by many as laissez-faire leadership, is a less intrusive style where a leader delegates tasks and initiatives to individual team members. Delegative leadership is considered less intrusive because it gives more control and power to the team.
  • 9. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 9 Delegative leadership requires leaders to trust their employees and their skills. Delegative leadership is primarily hands-off and can only be successful and sustainable when there is complete trust between a leader and their employees. Delegative leaders refrain from micromanaging tasks and allow team members to rely on their judgment for the best actions and strategies. Delegative leadership can be successful if a team is composed of members that are consistently reliable and take responsibility for the work they present. While delegative leadership is a valuable leadership style for many, the laid-back attitude can be challenging for some employees to adapt to, making it essential to have open communication and familiarity between team members. 2. How delegative leadership can change you and your career Though a laissez-faire approach might seem like the leader isn’t doing any work, this is far from the truth for successful delegative leaders. Delegative leadership benefits your career and reputation amongst colleagues when executed correctly. While finding a balance between allowing your employees to be independent and remaining somewhat involved is challenging for some, the results can be advantageous. Delegative leadership still requires leaders to support and train team members. You gain respect as a leader when your employees successfully navigate their own tasks based on your training and guidance. Additionally, delegative leaders often find success by guiding a project’s start and allowing employees to take what they’ve learned and implement it into their work. Delegative leadership reflects positively on you and your team members and builds trust between everyone. By mastering this leadership style, your team will learn to think independently while still collaborating and getting feedback from their coworkers. This style can be excellent for building trust and open communication between employees. When successful, delegative leadership will show that your company is reputable for its actions and the accomplishments and skills of every person in your organization.
  • 10. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 10 3. The benefits of using a delegative leadership style A delegative leader stands to benefit massively when successfully implementing this unique style. There are various benefits your company will gain if you master delegative leadership and your team adapts to a hands-off approach where they have as much influence on a project as everyone else. Below are some ways delegative leadership can benefit your organization and help produce high-quality work. Delegative leadership boosts creativity Delegative leadership is essential to strengthening creativity among your employees. By stepping back and putting more power and control into your employees’ hands, you encourage them to think creatively and independently. Whereas other leadership styles require employees to follow specific guidelines, delegative leadership highlights each employee’s unique skills and demonstrates innovation. Delegative leadership requires fast decision-making on behalf of each employee. While this can be stressful at first, as you and your employees begin to adapt, you will find that decision-making becomes easier as employees are encouraged to exercise their creativity at all times. If your organization lacks innovative ideas, stepping back and delegating tasks to your team members can encourage newfound creativity. Delegative leadership encourages employee growth Along with boosting employee creativity and innovation, delegative leadership promotes individual employee growth. By delegating tasks to your employees, you encourage them to take responsibility and accountability for their work and become more involved in your business. Delegative leadership encourages employees to be confident in their abilities and recognize their unique contributions to the company. Employees under a delegative leader learn to trust themselves and understand the value of their work. With this leadership style, employees will identify their strengths and weaknesses and can craft an effective strategy to improve in areas lacking. Instilling confidence in employees is crucial for
  • 11. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 11 any organization to succeed, and delegative leadership is a fantastic way to nudge employees toward recognizing their capabilities. Delegative leadership strengthens employee satisfaction When a leader successfully implements a delegative leadership style, the organization can improve immensely regarding employee satisfaction. Giving employees the power to recognize their talents will make them feel more valued by your organization and boost their overall performance and satisfaction with your company. Delegative leadership emphasizes the individuality of each employee while still encouraging teamwork and allowing individual employees to bring their unique contributions to the table. By encouraging employees to recognize their skills and giving them the freedom to conduct tasks based on their judgment, your team will be comfortable with their work and satisfied with their position in the company. 4. How can you become a delegative leader? You can begin taking steps toward implementing a delegative leadership style in your organization and encouraging employees to take more responsibility. However, because of the hands-off nature of delegative leadership and because many people are unfamiliar with working with this style, it’s essential to understand how to become a delegative leader and succeed. Though you might step back once your employees start working, thorough training and guidance are necessary at the start of a project. Without giving employees any information, delegative leadership will not be successful when executed. Additionally, set strict deadlines for each employee and individual tasks. A laissez-faire leadership style will fail if you don’t state your expectations, and perhaps the most important expectation of communicating to your employees is deadlines. Without a timeline for their work, employees will feel comfortable postponing their tasks and neglecting work because you aren’t watching over them.
  • 12. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 12 Delegative leadership requires you to trust your employees and establishing a foundation of trust before thoroughly implementing this style is crucial. Finally, delegative leaders must know when to intervene. No matter how skilled your employees are, there is always a chance for something to go wrong, especially as everyone adapts to this style. Take charge if something seems off, an incomplete project, or worsened employee performance. Authoritative leaders are often referred to as visionary. Leaders who adopt this style consider themselves mentors to their followers. Not to be confused with authoritarian leadership, authoritative leadership emphasizes a “follow me” approach. This way, leaders chart a course and encourage those around them to follow. Leaders who display authoritative traits tend to motivate and inspire those around them. They provide overall direction and provide their teams with guidance, feedback, and motivation. This promotes a sense of accomplishment or achievement. The authoritative leadership style relies heavily on getting to know each team member. This allows a leader to provide guidance and feedback on a more personalized level, helping individuals to succeed. This means authoritative leaders need to be able to adapt, particularly as the size of their team grows. Authoritative leadership is very hands-on, but leaders must be cautious not to micromanage. This is a tendency with this style, which can be overbearing for team members and create negative sentiments.
  • 13. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 13 Authoritative Leadership Everything you need to know about Authoritative Leadership Authoritative Leadership A concrete leadership style is essential to helping your organization and its employees succeed. Company leaders and those interested in pursuing leadership must identify their primary leadership style to understand how they want to guide their company. An authoritative leader has unique strengths and characteristics that allow them to foster company growth. Knowing the characteristics and benefits of authoritative leadership is essential to determine if this style is best for you. This article will describe everything about authoritative leadership before implementing a leadership style. Get a complete view of what Authoritative Leadership is: What is authoritative leadership? How authoritative leadership can change you and your career What are the benefits of using an authoritative leadership style How can you become an authoritative leader? Ready to start your Authoritative Leadership journey and give a boost to your career? 1. What is authoritative leadership and what are its key characteristics Authoritative leadership is a leadership style that takes a hands-on approach to guide an organization and its employees. Authoritative leaders act as mentors for their employees and work to inspire the team. Often referred to as visionary, authoritative leaders encourage employees to follow their lead and guide them toward success.
  • 14. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 14 Authoritative leaders are vastly different from leaders who take on an authoritarian attitude. While authoritative leadership is hands-on, the leader charts a course and encourages their employees to follow and grow along with them. Authoritative leaders motivate their teams to do their best and ensure that employees have a clear direction in work, along with offering guidance for those uncertain of their performance. Authoritative leaders offer feedback that is motivating rather than overly-harsh criticism. Authoritative leadership relies on communicating and getting along with team members. Open communication, understanding, and familiarity with one another are essential to a successful authoritative leadership strategy. Authoritative leaders help their teams succeed and encourage them to keep trying when they make mistakes 2. How authoritative leadership can change you and your career Authoritative leadership can help you grow your career and strengthen employee relationships. If your career requires quick turnarounds for projects, experiences emergencies, or wants to boost productivity, authoritative leadership can help you guide your team to handle whatever comes your way. Authoritative leadership can help create a more efficient work environment and encourage high- quality, error-free work. As an authoritative leader, you learn to make quick decisions and always think ahead, which is incredibly valuable to any business. An authoritative leadership style can help you act fast while paying attention to detail and guiding your employees to follow your lead. Additionally, authoritative leadership can boost your career by encouraging stronger bonds between you and your employees. By positioning yourself as an authoritative figure, you ask your employees to trust you to guide them. A deeper bond is formed between everyone in your workplace by putting their trust in you.
  • 15. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 15 Authoritative leadership encourages you to take an empathetic approach and requires that you understand and validate employee emotions while guiding them down the right path. Authoritative leadership strengthens your work ethic and helps you envision your organization’s future. Develop the skills to excel as a senior global leader 🌍 Go beyond your current situation, discover new dimensions of yourself as a reflective leader, powerfully effective, delivering much greater impact at the personal, professional levels and beyond with the IMD Executive MBA. Discover IMD’s EMBA 3. The benefits of using an authoritative leadership style You and your organization can grow exponentially with a successful approach to authoritative leadership. An authoritative leadership strategy can lead to consistently high-quality, accurate, and timely work. Below are the primary benefits of authoritative leadership to consider if you are interested in adopting this leadership style. Authoritative leadership provides clarity One of the primary benefits of authoritative leadership is its ability to provide clarity within an organization. Authoritative leaders give their teams a clear and actionable vision of the company’s goals and growth potential. Authoritative leaders understand the company and can strategize and think ahead to prepare for the organization’s future. Authoritative leadership is also beneficial because it encourages open communication when something isn’t clear. Employees can follow the guidance of an authoritative leader when they are confused or conflicted over their tasks. The authoritative leader oversees everything to guarantee everyone is on the same wavelength and moving toward the same goal.
  • 16. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 16 Authoritative leadership encourages trust and empathy Authoritative leadership is beneficial to encouraging trust between you and your employees while remaining empathetic to their struggles. Authoritative leadership requires that you inspire your employees and form a bond with them to ensure that they trust your vision for the company. Authoritative leaders can encourage employees to follow them willingly through positive reinforcement and a visionary approach. With solid trust between the leader and employees, authoritative leadership can be successful. Authoritative leadership is the perfect fit for organizations where employees require a clear direction and knowledge of their work. This style encourages high-quality work and helps employees perform their best. Employees will follow an authoritative leader when they trust the leader to guide them toward success. Authoritative leadership promotes consistent results in less time Authoritative leadership sets clear standards and guidelines for an organization’s employees. When implemented successfully, authoritative leadership will promote consistent, high-quality results in less time than before. With your guidance, employees can confidently take on any task and develop new strategies to achieve their work goals. By confidently leading your team toward a unified vision, you can ensure success and achieve your organizational goals. Additionally, authoritative leaders know how to take quick action and make decisions to promote high-quality results that take less time to complete. A comprehensive authoritative leadership plan will guarantee that your work is on time, every time. 4. How can you become an authoritative leader? If your organization is suitable for an authoritative leadership style, you can begin by taking a few steps toward becoming a successful authoritative leader. To begin your journey towards authoritative leadership, you must identify the strengths and weaknesses in your organization. Authoritative leaders should focus on weaknesses in their organization, such as late work and
  • 17. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 17 unclear expectations. When you identify what needs to change, you can understand your purpose. Becoming an authoritative leader also requires interacting and communicating with your employees as often as possible. Authoritative leaders cannot take on the detached style of delegative leadership–overseeing everything and getting involved with your team is essential. Knowing your team members and their strengths can help you address their unique contributions to your organization and determine a path forward. When developing an authoritative leadership plan, ensure you know why you’re taking specific actions. This style might be new to many of your employees, and they will likely ask questions. As you guide them through the process and toward success, be prepared to explain issues you’ve noticed and detail how your solution will benefit them and the organization. Transactional leadership, often referred to as managerial leadership, is a leadership style that relies on rewards and punishments. This leadership style clearly emphasizes structure, assuming individuals may not possess the motivation needed to complete their tasks. With this reward-based system, a leader sets clear team goals or tasks. Leaders also clarify how their teams will be rewarded (or punished) for their work. Rewards can take many formats but typically involve financial recompenses, such as pay or a bonus. This “give and take” leadership style is more concerned with efficiently following established routines and procedures than making transformational organizational changes. Transactional leadership establishes roles and responsibilities for each employee. However, it can lead to diminishing returns if employees are always aware of how much their effort is worth. Therefore, incentives must be consistent with company goals and supported by additional gestures of appreciation.
  • 18. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 18 Transactional Leadership Everything you need to know about Transactional Leadership Transactional Leadership Finding a leadership style that works for you is challenging for many business leaders. As you search for the best way to guide your employees, you will likely encounter five different styles: transformational, delegative, participative, authoritative, and transactional leadership. These styles have unique advantages that can help you grow as a leader. However, determining which style is best for your organization is essential to guide your employees successfully. This article will cover transactional leadership, its benefits, and how to become a transactional leader. Get a complete view of what Transactional Leadership is: 1. What is transactional leadership 2. How transactional leadership can change you and your career 3. What are the benefits of using a transactional leadership style 4. How can you become a transactional leader? 1. What is transactional leadership and what are its key characteristics Transactional leadership, also known as managerial leadership, relies on rewards and punishments. Transactional leadership prioritizes structured tasks with clear guidelines to ensure that employees stay on task with minimal error. Transactional leaders often implement this style to prevent employees from losing motivation to complete their tasks. Transactional leaders use a reward-based system to give their teams specific goals and tasks. When providing these guidelines, transactional leaders emphasize the potential for the employees to receive a reward, most often with monetary value. Offering rewards help transactional leaders keep their employees motivated to ensure that work is high-quality and on time.
  • 19. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 19 The “give and take” method in transactional leadership establishes specific roles and responsibilities for each employee and rewards employees based on effort, outcome, and success. The transactional leadership style requires structure to be successful. 2. How transactional leadership can change you and your career Transactional leadership helps progress your career by encouraging you to take a practical leadership approach. Transactional leaders are deeply sourced in consistently creating a structure that works within an organization and following that structure. You and your organization will benefit immensely when you successfully execute a transformational leadership style. Transactional leadership helps you strengthen your communication style between yourself and your employees. You will understand how to clearly express your expectations from each employee and master a direct, transparent communication style. Being a transactional leader entails fast and confident decision-making on your behalf. Transactional leadership can help you and your organization manage crises. With transactional leadership comes newfound confidence in your executive abilities. 3. The benefits of using a transactional leadership style Transactional leadership has the potential to benefit you and your business substantially. Understanding why transactional leadership is a beneficial strategy and a valuable option for identifying your leadership style is essential. Below are the primary benefits of a transactional leadership style. Transactional leadership encourages fairness among team members When employees feel like favoritism is involved in their success, tensions arise in organizations. Whereas other leadership styles could strengthen these sentiments, transactional leadership encourages fairness and peace.
  • 20. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 20 By implementing a rewards system where each employee has an equal opportunity to succeed, you eliminate any doubt employees have over perceived favoritism that you have for specific members. With transactional leadership, all employees are on equal footing. Transactional leadership implements a simple and structured system Transactional leadership is one of the most straightforward styles for employees to stay on track and motivated. As a transactional leader, you provide employees with specific roles and require them to follow a structured framework for their tasks. Transactional leadership is effective because all employees understand the organization’s definition of success and the expectations of each employee. This style ensures that every employee understands their job and has no questions about their work or role. Transactional leaders provide employees with a singular goal for success, and each employee knows what they can gain or lose if they do not reach performance standards. Transactional leadership is motivational for employees A rewards-based system is a huge motivator for employees and encourages them to complete their work efficiently and flawlessly. Transactional leadership utilizes rewards to guarantee that employees are always performing their best. Transactional leadership does not implement any structural changes to be successful but instead uses compensation to push the company forward and continue growing. Successfully implementing a transactional leadership style motivates employees to produce high- quality work and makes them feel like valued team members. This leadership style demonstrates the importance of their contributions. No matter how rigid you keep the structure of your organization, rewards and recognition show employees that they aren’t insignificant and that the business is better because of their contributions.
  • 21. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 21 4. How can you become a transactional leader? Transactional leadership benefits any organization hoping to improve its structure and functionality. If a transactional leadership style suits your organization, there are vital steps to becoming a transactional leader. Becoming a transactional leader begins by creating an unwavering structure to guide your employees. Implementing structure in your organization is possible by giving individual employees clear tasks to complete with high expectations for the quality of their work. The rewards-based system in transactional leadership ensures that no one goes against the typical structure and that all leaders and employees remain on the same wavelength. Becoming a transactional leader also requires advanced communication skills. Communication is essential to implementing and reinforcing structure within an organization. To be a successful transactional leader, you must remain transparent with your employees. Share your expectations and ensure that all employees follow your exact guidelines. As you implement a transactional strategy and employees adapt to this new system, continuously check that everyone is on the same page. Once your employees are comfortable with your transactional leadership style, you can begin recognizing top-performing employees and offering monetary rewards, such as a bonus. Recognizing your employees will keep them motivated and guarantee they continue performing at their best. Additionally, recognizing employees makes them feel proud of their work and helps them build a bond with you. When you recognize an employee’s hard work, they feel more comfortable with you and more confident in their abilities. A leader’s recognition lets employees know they are valued and appreciated. The transactional leadership style helps form bonds between leader and employee, strengthens communication, and boosts workplace morale.
  • 22. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 22 Sometimes referred to as democratic leadership, participative leadership is a leadership style that encourages leaders to listen to their employees and involve them in the decision-making process. This leadership style requires leaders to be inclusive, utilize good communication skills, and, crucially, be able to share power/responsibility. When a leader adopts a participative leadership style, this encourages collaboration through accountability. This often leads to a collective effort of a team to identify problems and develop solutions instead of assigning individual blame. This leadership style has historically been prevalent and utilized by many leaders in many organizations. However, as working habits have changed (accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic) and teams have become more decentralized, this leadership style is more complicated. Spontaneous, open, and candid communication is often associated with a participative leadership style. Remote working or virtual teams can make this particularly challenging to maintain. Participative leadership is often favored as it helps to build trust with employees. Empowering them and encouraging them to share their ideas on essential matters, demonstrating their value to a team. Participative Leadership Leadership style can make or break your organization. Identifying the leadership style best suited to your skills and your organization’s needs can help you reach your goals and set your business up for a prosperous future. When implementing a specific leadership style, you have a framework for growing your business and a clear direction for reaching specific goals. Business leaders typically fall into one of five leadership styles: transformational, delegative, authoritative, transactional, and participative leadership. Participative leadership has unique benefits and purposes that could help you structure your organization and lead confidently. This article will discuss participative leadership, its benefits, and how to become a participative leader.
  • 23. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 23 Get a complete view of what Participative Leadership is: 1. What is participative leadership 2. How participative leadership can change you and your career 3. What are the benefits of using a participative leadership style 4. How can you become a participative leader? 1. What is participative leadership and what are its key characteristics Participative leadership is a unique leadership style, also known as democratic leadership. Participative leaders guide their employees while encouraging them to provide feedback and participate in decision-making. Participative leaders recognize employees’ significant role in their organization’s success. They promote transparent communication, collaborative solutions, and inclusivity. Participative leaders share much of their responsibilities with employees, creating an even playing field where all employees contribute to decisions. Participative leadership requires team effort and accountability–no individual is assigned blame when problems arise. Candid communication dominates the participative leadership style, and employees are encouraged to be honest and communicate their genuine concerns or suggestions with the rest of the team. Participative leadership promotes a deep trust between leaders and employees, and its emphasis on teams instead of the individual makes it an effective leadership style. 2. How participative leadership can change you and your career Participative leadership can help improve your work ethic and habits while driving growth in your organization. Getting feedback and collaborating with people you trust will help you see your business differently, allowing you to conceptualize ideas you never considered. Participative leadership sets you up for a successful career because it requires you to understand the value of teamwork and helps you grow comfortable adapting to new environments and situations. Your organization will change for the better with a successful participative leadership
  • 24. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 24 strategy. Organizations following a participative leadership style can significantly improve their performance as a collective while encouraging creativity and individuality. 3. The benefits of using a participative leadership style Participative leadership can bring a team together and produce excellent results correctly. If you want to strengthen relationships within your organization and value collaboration, consider the many benefits of a participative leadership style. Below are examples of some benefits to expect with a participative leadership style. Participative leadership encourages engagement Many organizations need more engagement between team members, and engagement and collaboration are stunted when a single person makes all significant decisions. Though a stricter leadership style works for some organizations, participative leadership highlights the potential to grow as a company through engagement with all employees. Participative leadership keeps employees involved and makes them feel like valued members of your organization. It reinforces the idea that every part of an organization matters and that each employee holds unique skills and value. When employees are comfortable contributing to collaborative discussions, they become more passionate about the organization, more confident in their roles, and more satisfied with the company’s direction. Participative leadership boosts creativity Creativity is valuable for any organization, and participative leadership encourages creativity more than other leadership styles. When leaders open themselves up to the ideas and advice of others, they can expand their understanding of an organization and develop new, innovative strategies. Allowing every team member to share their ideas and contribute to the decision-making process means you will have many creative ideas to incorporate into a strategy. This expanded creativity is essential because it contributes to improved, efficient problem-solving and ensures that a leader always has options to grow the organization.
  • 25. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 25 Participative leadership improves morale Keeping employees motivated and excited about their work is crucial to increase retention rates and planning for the long-term future of an organization. Participative leadership is one of the best ways a leader can boost employee morale because it makes every employee feel like they belong. Many employees feel isolated and directionless without teamwork and communication, creating barriers between team members. Participative leadership fixes these issues by fostering a community. Simply put, participative leadership lets employees know they are valued and have influence within the company, making them comfortable sharing their ideas with you and your team and placing all workers on equal footing. By keeping morale high, your employees will continue contributing and staying motivated to help your organization thrive. 4. How can you become a participative leader? A participative leadership style can significantly benefit many organizations and should be considered a viable option as you explore individual styles. If a participative leadership style is suitable for your goals and intentions as a leader, you can implement new strategies in a few ways. Implementing participative leadership methods starts by creating open communication. Encourage employees to collaborate during meetings and share their ideas without judgment. To ease employees into the transitional process, leaders can begin by gathering ideas through anonymous surveys to determine how valued each employee feels within an organization. Opening collaboration between team members is one of many steps to a successful participative leadership strategy. Once transparent communication begins, you can step back and let employees collaborate, intervening when necessary. Having meetings where you oversee the discussion but do not influence it lets employees know that their thoughts are essential to the organization’s overall success. Utilizing some of these strategies can build a solid foundation for participative leadership within your organization.
  • 26. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 26 If you pursue a participative leadership style to manage your organization, always remember that each employee matters as much as you do in decision-making. Ensure that you aren’t dismissing anyone’s opinion or diminishing their contributions. Servant leadership is a leadership style that puts the needs of others first. It emphasizes creating strong relationships with those around you and focuses on enabling them to reach their full potential. As a leader, it requires focusing on understanding the people you are working with and developing their abilities, while also setting a good example and understanding their personal goals. At its core, servant leadership is about ethical decision making; if one follows this model they will be more likely to make decisions based on what is right for everyone involved, rather than just benefitting a select few. This approach fosters an environment where creativity and problem- solving thrive as team members feel empowered to suggest new solutions and build upon each other’s ideas. Furthermore, following the principles of servant leadership can result in improved communication between all involved parties – from senior management to front-line employees. By taking into account the opinions of subordinates, leaders can prevent any potential conflicts while maintaining both healthy relationships and peaceful work environments. Ultimately, these qualities help create a stronger sense of loyalty amongst team members which consequently leads to increased productivity overall.
  • 27. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 27 Servant Leadership Servant leadership is a concept that has been gaining more traction in the business world due to its emphasis on creating strong relationships between leaders and their teams. The concept has existed for centuries, although Robert K. Greenleaf first formalized it in his 1970 essay: “The Servant as Leader”. This essay sparked a revolution and marked the beginning of a new era for leadership – one based on service, kindness, and trust. The idea behind servant leadership is to lead with humility and selflessness rather than domination or power. By putting the needs of others before their own, servant leaders strive to create a productive work environment while ensuring their team members reach their highest potential. Get a complete view of what Servant Leadership is: 1. The pros of Servant Leadership 2. The cons of Servant Leadership 3. How to implement Servant Leadership: 9 Steps 4. Three Things to remember about Servant Leadership 1. The pros of Servant Leadership Servant leaders act not only as supervisors but also as facilitators who motivate and inspire their subordinates to achieve excellence. Servant leadership’s focus on fostering collaboration, building trust, and developing team members makes it an attractive way for organizations to cultivate high-performing teams. When it comes to the pros of servant leadership, several unique benefits come with this approach: Positive Atmosphere Employees who work under a leader who is focused on helping them to be better professionals are more likely to be productive and engaged with their work. The supportive environment these
  • 28. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 28 types of leaders foster can also lead to increased creativity among team members and improved communication, which helps everyone understand each other better. Increased Motivation Another benefit of servant leadership is that employees working under these leaders often become more motivated since they have someone at the top whom they respect and feel inspired by. Better Decisions Servant Leadership encourages team members to think independently while remaining connected to make decisions collaboratively. This results in smarter solutions arriving faster since everybody’s thoughts and ideas can be considered without anyone feeling overwhelmed or left out. Greater Job Satisfaction Servant leaders create an environment where team members are valued and respected, which can lead to greater job satisfaction. This can result in lower turnover rates and more loyalty to the organization. Improved Communication Servant leaders focus on listening and empathizing with team members, which can lead to improved communication and greater understanding among team members. This can make it easier to resolve conflicts and work together effectively. Greater Ethical Standards Servant leaders prioritize the needs of their employees, customers, and other stakeholders, rather than just focusing on profits or other short-term goals. This can lead to a more ethical and socially responsible organization that is better able to meet the needs of its stakeholders over the long term.
  • 29. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 29 Stronger Teamwork Servant leaders encourage collaboration and teamwork, leading to stronger relationships and a more cohesive team. This can result in improved efficiency and greater productivity. Empowerment Servant leaders empower their team members to take on leadership roles and make decisions, which can lead to greater ownership and accountability among team members. This can result in greater creativity, innovation, and problem-solving skills. In summary, servant leadership brings many benefits to an organization, including a positive atmosphere, increased motivation, better decision-making, greater job satisfaction, improved communication, greater ethical standards, stronger teamwork, and empowerment. These factors can ultimately lead to a more productive, engaged, and successful organization. 2. The cons of Servant Leadership Despite all its advantages, there are some drawbacks to servant leadership as well. These include: Lack of Results Focus These types of leaders tend to be less demanding regarding results because they want to ensure their teams are happy and content. As a result, there might be times when performance goals are unmet or individuals who could have accomplished more don’t reach their true potential because of this leniency. Difficulty Connecting with Leaders Some people may find it challenging to connect with such a leader if they’re used to traditional methods of management which rely on intimidation rather than mutual respect. Potential for Passivity
  • 30. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 30 Servant leaders are known for being humble, compassionate, and selfless, which can sometimes lead to passivity. They may avoid taking a firm stance or making difficult decisions, making it hard for the organization to move forward decisively. Limited Control Servant leaders tend to give their team members more autonomy and decision-making power, which can lead to a lack of control over the overall direction of the organization. This can make it challenging to achieve a shared vision or to implement large-scale changes. Difficulty in Scaling Servant leadership works best in small teams or organizations where the leader can easily connect with each team member. It can be difficult to scale this approach to larger organizations where the leader may not have the same level of direct contact with each employee. Resistance to Change Servant leadership is a relatively new concept, and not all employees or organizations may be open to this new way of leading. There may be resistance to change among employees who are used to a more traditional, hierarchical leadership style. Risk of Being Taken Advantage Of Servant leaders put the needs of their team members above their own, which can sometimes lead to them being taken advantage of by their team members. They may be more likely to put up with poor performance or bad behavior from team members, which can ultimately harm the organization. Take the next step in your leadership journey 🚀 How are you playing to your strengths, mobilizing your team, steering organizational change, and restoring confidence in these challenging times? Develop key leadership capabilities and accelerate your impact as a leader with IMD.
  • 31. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 31 3. How to implement Servant Leadership: 9 Steps Fortunately, organizations can take steps towards implementing servant leadership successfully to avoid its drawbacks while getting the most out of its benefits. Here are some tips for successful implementation: 1. Evaluate Existing Practices Start by evaluating existing managerial practices and identify any areas where improvement needs to take place for servant leadership principles to thrive. 2. Provide Training & Recognition Programs Invest in providing staff with training in areas such as communication and collaboration so they’re better equipped when dealing with each other or having open discussions about various topics related to employee satisfaction. Additionally, provide rewards or recognition programs that recognize those who go above and beyond expectations set by managers and peers alike. 3. Encourage Open Dialogue & Transparency: Create an environment where dialogue between team members is encouraged regardless of one’s position — from the bottom up — so everyone feels like they have ownership over contributing ideas or solutions when necessary without fear of reprisal from higher-ups. Also, ensure transparency between all involved parties so information sharing becomes part of the natural culture within the organization instead of feeling forced or uncomfortable for anyone concerned. 4. Focus on Feedback & Development Opportunities Maintain an ongoing dialogue between management and staff by offering regular feedback sessions concerning individual performance, strengths/weaknesses, etc., while also providing development opportunities allowing personnel to hone skillsets needed to grow professionally long-term basis. 5. Empower Employees
  • 32. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 32 Give employees the autonomy and resources to take on leadership roles and make decisions. This will help them feel more engaged and motivated, and it will also help the organization to become more flexible and responsive to changing circumstances. 6. Lead by Example As a servant leader, it’s essential to lead by example. Demonstrating the values and behaviors that you want to see in your team members will help to create a culture of servant leadership throughout the organization. 7. Encourage Collaboration Encourage collaboration and teamwork by creating opportunities for team members to work together on projects and by recognizing and rewarding team efforts. This will help to build stronger relationships and a more cohesive team. 8. Communicate the Vision Communicate the vision and mission of the organization, and make sure that everyone understands how their role fits into the overall goals of the organization. This will help to create a sense of shared purpose and motivation among team members. 9. Regularly Review Progress Regularly review progress and make adjustments as needed. Monitor the effectiveness of the servant leadership approach, gather feedback from team members, and make changes as necessary. This will help to ensure that the organization is constantly improving and moving in the right direction.
  • 33. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 33 4. Three Things to remember about Servant Leadership What Servant Leadership is Servant leadership is a philosophy and approach that puts the needs of others before your own. By focusing on service, humility, and trust in the workplace, servant leaders can create a productive and collaborative environment where everyone can thrive. Implementing this leadership style requires commitment from both leader and team members alike, but it is an effective way to foster collaboration and success. With the right actions, support and dedication, servant leaders can help to take their teams—and their organization—to the next level. The Pros Servant leadership can lead to a more ethical and socially responsible organization, as it prioritizes the needs of the employees, customers, and other stakeholders. This approach can also increase employee motivation and job satisfaction, which in turn can result in lower turnover rates and higher commitment and loyalty to the organization. The benefits of servant leadership are also evident in better decision-making, as it encourages independent thinking and collaboration among team members. The Cons As with any leadership approach, there are also some potential downsides to servant leadership. It can be challenging to implement in organizations that are highly hierarchical or that have a strong “command and control” culture. Leaders need to be aware of these potential drawbacks and find ways to mitigate them, such as setting clear performance goals, creating a culture that values mutual respect, and being prepared to make difficult decisions when necessary. Conclusion In conclusion, servant leadership is a leadership style based on serving others and putting the needs of employees, customers, and other stakeholders first. It can lead to a more engaged, motivated, and productive workforce, better decision-making, and a more ethical and socially responsible organization. Implementing servant leadership requires a change in culture and mindset, training and development opportunities, open dialogue, transparency, focus on feedback and development opportunities, empowering employees, leading by example, encouraging collaboration and communication of the vision, and regularly reviewing progress.
  • 34. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 34 While it may have its challenges, the benefits of servant leadership make it a practical approach for any organization looking to improve its performance, employee satisfaction, and overall success. How to find your leadership style? Choosing a leadership style that works for you can make you a more effective leader. Whether you manage a large or small team, your leadership style heavily impacts how your team sees you. Here are a few points that can help you get started. Firstly, being clear about your goals and what you want to achieve is essential. Once you have a clear vision, it will be easier to communicate your ideas to your team and inspire them to follow your lead. Secondly, experiment! There are many different leadership styles, and the best way to find your own is to experiment with different approaches and see what works best for you and your team. Finally, remember that leadership is not about being perfect but authentically leading. When you lead from a place of passion and purpose, others will naturally be drawn to you and your message. Remember, as a leader, it is vitally important to be open to (and to seek actively) feedback and be willing to adjust your approach as needed. Which style resonated with you? Do you think that your current leadership style is effective?
  • 35. Be smart to discover the leadership style of your leaders Page 35 The 8 key leadership skills you need to know in 2023