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7 Management Styles for Effective Leadership

Becoming a manager holds so much gravity in their account. To be effective, managers should not only be skilled and visionary; they must also practice different management styles just to fit the role. After all, the most successful leaders know how to diversify when the need calls for it. There are several management styles that you should know if you are a budding manager, and we’ll shed enough light on them in this guide.

What is a management style?

A management style defines the methods and approaches a leader or individual uses to manage a group, organization, project, and more. It entails how the manager functions to fulfill the goals of the respective team or project. It includes how they plan, organize, make decisions, delegate, and manage people.

For managers to be effective, they must be able to adjust their leadership style according to the culture and some factors surrounding the workplace. These factors may be internal and external.

Internal factors that may impact management style may include the organizational culture, policies, employee engagement, and employee skills. Whereas the external factors are elements that are out of control of the company. These include employment laws, competitors, suppliers, customers, the economy, and more.

What do leaders consider in their leadership style?

Managers use a variety of management styles to satiate the needs of the organization. And in the pursuit of using embodying them, here are the considerations that must be taken into account to:

  • The volume of workload and the allotted deadlines
  • Work industry and company culture
  • Management qualities
  • Company and team goals
  • Individual personalities and aptitudes

Why managers stick to a management style  

So why do managers use management styles in managing teams and projects? Seemingly enough, there are significant benefits that you can get out of using one or more.

1. You don’t have to depend on management fads.

Several management fads pop up and fade. However, when you have a solid management style that perfectly matches you, you will minimize the use of other styles. Or even better, you have something you can get back to when leadership becomes tough.

2. Learn to adapt quickly.

Using a certain management style helps you adjust to your role and the situations around you. It enables you to deal with issues that battle the norms. 

3. Engage with team members more effectively.

Having the right management style makes you a better leader. And when you are a better leader, team members are more comfortable approaching you and engaging with the team. This results in open communication, efficiency, and improved productivity.

4. Help you identify your strengths and weaknesses.

Each management style has its own required skills. When you find your go-to management style, you can easily detect your strengths that should be maximized and the weaknesses that need to be improved. 

5. Know what environment you want to work in.

When you use a specific management style, you discover which kind of environment it works best in. This also helps you realize what type of environment you seek to practice that style.

manager style

Types of management styles

Here are the most common leadership styles that you should know when working as a manager.

1. Autocratic

An autocratic management style means the leaders follow a top-down approach. This entails that they make decisions alone—without asking for any feedback from employees. 

This type of management works wonders when the work environment requires efficiency in crisis and quick decision-making.

However, this type of leadership results in several adverse effects on management. Some of these include:

  • Creates fear towards the management
  • Raises a culture of constant supervision
  • Causes poor working relationships

2. Consultative

In consultative management, managers regularly seek employee feedback and openly acknowledge concerns. They encourage open communication in the management to know what works for everyone—and not. However, managers still hold decision-making power.

The wonderful thing about consultative management is that it empowers employees to speak up. This creates a highly engaged environment, which may also lessen turnover. 

On the other hand, consultative management may not be as efficient as autocratic because there are more heads involved.

3. Persuasive

The persuasive style is similar to the autocratic style in the sense that there is a strong centralized control in decision-making. The managers make the decisions, but they seek to help team members understand why those are made. This encourages trust within the team since the management is transparent in their decision-making.

This leadership style motivates employees in a logical sense—especially those who prefer working in authoritative management.

On the downside, this leadership style may still be restricting to employees since they don’t have any outlets to air out their feedback.

4. Participative

In participative leadership, managers allow everyone’s participation in decision-making. There is an authority given to everyone, and there is an open discussion about matters before arriving at decisions. 

This kind of leadership empowers members more than anyone since they are directly involved with the planning. Having this kind of management motivates employees to find their own voice and share their constructive recommendations. 

Participative leadership becomes undesirable when it causes inefficiency in decision-making since it takes a lot of effort to gather everyone’s inputs.

5. Laissez-faire

In a laissez-faire management style, managers are more laid-back and trusting in their employees. They similarly work as mentors who rarely interrupt employees on how they do their work. They guide team members and monitor them from time to time—which prevents micromanagement. 

The autonomy given to employees empowers them to be more productive. As a result, employees can perform better and do their jobs more effectively. 

The only downside in this management style is that some employees might feel neglected due to the laid-back culture. Some may feel at a loss of direction when they prefer constant guidance over full autonomy. 

6. Transactional

This management style makes use of rewards to motivate employees and improve their productivity. Transactional management highly believes that extrinsic rewards play a significant role in encouraging team members to exercise their utmost potential. These rewards may include bonuses, incentives, leaves, and more.

With this kind of management, employees develop the drive to do more since their outputs are driven by incentivized motivation. It is an effective way to encourage people to perform more willingly since every move has its rewards. 

On the downside, this can have a negative impact on how the employees will perceive the company. It is not as effective when you provide them with intrinsic rewards in the long run. This kind of management may not be effective when promoting innovation and creativity.

7. Transformational

The transformational management style strives for an innovative work environment. This entails that the managers encourage their members to perform their best, setting them off to the edge at times. They motivate their employees to do their best and aim for growth.

With this kind of management, employees improve their ability to analyze, adapt, and innovate. They become innovative, which is suitable for a highly dynamic work environment. 

The only disadvantage of having this kind of leadership is that it doesn’t suit most employees. You need to hire the right persons who can keep up with the fast-paced mindset that this management requires. If they can’t keep up, productivity might be at stake here.

Those are seven of the most common management styles you can practice in the workplace. There are more styles to know when you are trying to explore all methods of managing teams and projects. And you can learn them by taking one of these well-recommended Skill Success courses about management:

Ready to become a more effective manager? Click here to get started.

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