What type of leader are you? And what impact is this having on your team?

1st April 2018

Have you ever thought about what type of leader you are? If not, it’s valuable to spend some time reflecting to understand your own personal style, to ensure you’re are getting the most out of your team.

What type of leader are you?

In my experience being a great leader and hiring an effective team is what makes the difference between a mediocre company and one that thrives in today’s competitive market.

But there isn’t a one-size-fits-all leadership style for every business – it depends on your industry, your vision and the culture you want to build. However, having a thorough understanding of various leadership styles can help you reflect on how you work best and how this impacts on your team.

Let’s dig a little deeper into 6 well-known leadership styles and see which one you relate most to….

  1. Visionary Leader 

This is a leader who sees where they want to be in the future and plans out the necessary steps to get there. This style of leadership entails the leader bringing their team with them, sharing their goals and visions for the company and including them on the journey. This style of leadership is great in developing a company when a new direction is needed to progress and drive the company to growth.

So how does being a visionary leader impact on your team?

  • It keeps employees motivated – as they have input into the direction of the company. The employees come on the journey with the leader.
  • May not work for all employees – those who like clarity, may feel overwhelmed by what may be constant change in direction.
  • There needs to be balance between vision and action – not having this can be negative to a team. If there is lots of vision and long term thinking but no action being taken to achieve this, it can be dangerous.
  1. Coaching Leader

A coaching leader will be intentional in knowing the personal goals of their employees and linking them to the company goals. This style is more about knowing your team and what drives them and aligning them to vision and goals of the organisation.

Although this style of leader will define the goals and visions for an organisation, they will also seek and value the input from their team.

So how does being a coaching leader impact on your team?

  • It is a style that helps to build rapport and trust
  • It needs to be a two way street – in order for this to be beneficial to you and the employee, it needs both employer and employee to be committed to it.
  • Can be a motivating style of leadership as it encourages input and opinions from the team
  1. Affiliate Leader

This style of leadership promotes harmony and ensures that conflict is solved to maintain balance in the team. It is a style of leadership that really values it’s people and understands the importance of a happy team and prioritising people. This leader will encourage inclusion and usually a leader who uses this style will have high emotional intelligence.

This style of leadership can be invaluable when there is a lot of conflict in the team. This leadership style will address the problems and help to find solutions.

So how does being an affiliate leader impact on your team?

  • As this is a style that is highly focused on emotion, only certain people will see the value in it and benefits it can bring.
  • This style can bring positive changes to teams where there has been a lot of conflict and unhappy employees.
  • Sometimes these leaders will value and reward personal characteristics over job performance, which will not sit well with all personality types.
  1. Democratic Leader

This is an inclusive style of leadership and it encourages input and ideas from everyone in the team, regardless of their level or status. This doesn’t mean the employees or team have the final say, the leader is still the decision maker, but they welcome other people’s ideas and really consider them, not just write them off because they themselves didn’t come up with the idea.

So how does being a democratic leader impact your team?

  • Gets the team on board with an idea and builds team spirit
  • Helps to build morale and create a happy team
  • Only works if the leader trusts their team and the team are experienced. Inexperienced employees may feel vulnerable with this style of leadership.
  1. Pace setting leader

This can be described as a lead by example management style, one where the leader sets high standards for themselves as well as the team. As the leader has high expectations, poor performance is not tolerated but tackled head on. No burying their heads in the sand, this leader will face an underperformance issue head on. This style has been known to drive results and is keen to get there quickly.

So how does being a democratic leader impact your team?

  • Well pace setting leaders will have teams that are high performers and achievers. They will be teams that pride themselves on great quality work and excelling in what they do.
  • Some people may feel like they are not quick enough to keep up with the pace.
  • Leaders of these teams may see high staff turnover from employees who feel like they are burnt out and can’t keep up anymore.
  1. Commanding leader

This style of leadership could be described as a “do what I say” style, there is no input required from the team, the leader leads in the most traditional sense of the word, and the team do as they are told. This style can be useful during a time of uncertainty or crisis, but if used more frequently could be viewed as controlling.

So how does being a commanding leader impact your team?

  • A team led in this style, may perceive the leader as cold and distant.
  • The leader will give very clear instructions on expectations and tasks which may work well for some people but it can have a negative impact if the task isn’t carried out exactly as asked to by the leader.
  • Teams working in this style of leadership may work if you recruit the types of people that are happy to be told what to do, but there is risk of rebellion if there is an employee amongst them who doesn’t want to put up with it anymore.

We hope you have found this quick overview of 6 leadership styles helpful.

Let us know which one resonates most with you?


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