Finding the right leadership style for you

No two business leaders are exactly the same; true to the nature of the role, most adopt their own unique approach to motivating a team and inspiring great performance. However the majority of those approaches have their basis in widely accepted leadership styles which have been defined by years of in-depth academic research – most notably the landmark study ‘Leadership That Gets Results’ by Daniel Goleman.

Our courses in Leadership & Management are designed to be flexible and suit the needs of learners at any stage of their career. Our courses will teach you the key principles of leadership, find your leadership style and help to develop the ability to reflect on your own skills.

What are the main leadership styles?

Affiliative: An affiliative leader focuses on building team morale and ensuring that everyone works together in a ‘people come first’ system. This kind of leadership works well to harness a positive atmosphere throughout the team.

Authoritative: The main characteristic of an authoritative leader is that they bring the team together and focus them on a unified vision, which everyone can work towards as a collective. This system is best utilised with a less experienced team, as those who are experts in their field may be less inclined to follow the lead of others.

Coaching: Leaders that focus on coaching tend to have the long-term aim of developing people for the future and giving staff a chance to improve while integrating new skills into their job. A coach is always happy to let team members experience different roles, and this approach can be very successful when a nurturing personality type is leading a young, enthusiastic team.

Coercive: This is widely considered to be an outdated style and should perhaps only be adopted as a last resort. This approach basically relies on team members doing what they are told without question. Understandably, this approach can lead to discontent among the team, who may feel they are being over managed or not given space to do their job.

Pacesetting: Quite the opposite of the coercive method; pacesetting leaders tend to lead by example. They look to demonstrate the positive impacts of excellence and self-discipline in the hope that the rest of the team will follow their lead. This can work very well for an eager and motivated team, but some may find that high standards and persistent focus on performance stifles their creativity.

Democratic: This one is fairly self-explanatory and it tends to engender a positive workplace atmosphere. The democratic leader often asks team members for their opinion, and takes their feedback seriously, incorporating it into decision making processes. This inclusion will make team members feel valued. To work effectively, this approach depends on having team members knowledgeable enough to make a valid contribution to decision making processes.

Finding your leadership style

Many leaders do not instinctively know which is the right style to adopt. It is often the case that finding the right approach is an ongoing process of discovery with a fair amount of trial and error involved. That is why our courses are ideal for those looking to discover their leadership identity, giving you the opportunity to utilise you newly developed skills in real environments and finding what kind of approach works best with your personality type.

To find out more about our range of Leadership & Management qualifications at all levels, contact us today.