¿What is your leadership style? (Part I)

Companies and SMEs are looking for new leadership models which guarantee effective human resources management

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02/11/2017 · Alexandra Maratchi

Leadership is currently a major concern for companies. Statistics show that traditional models, such as procedures based on annual performance and feedback drawn out over time, are not suited to the modern workforce. According to Deloitte´s report ‘The Millennial Survey’, 39% of millennials are calling for better leadership within their organisations.

In our MOOC ´Team leadership: giving and receiving feedback´, we go over various strategies to implement effective leadership in the workplace. In this entry, we will look at the models as described by the psychologist, Daniel Goleman.

According to Goleman, the following types of leaders exist: commanding, visionary, affiliative, democratic, pacesetting and coaching leaders. Analysing their characteristics will help you identify which style best suits your personality, as well as how to adapt these techniques as your own.

The commanding leader

Commanding leaders work by enforcing their ideas. They take on an autocratic approach, in which they always have the last word. Their main aim is to ensure their orders are fulfilled as quickly as possible. They tend to speak firmly and assertively, setting out clear guidelines.

This leadership style´s main asset is the ability to create a clear course of action, easy to follow and difficult to deviate from.  It acts as a stronghold in times of crises, when people able to take charge are most needed. On the other hand, adopting this style can also bring about a negative working environment. Employees will lack motivation if they fulfil their tasks only to avoid a reprimand from their leader. 

The visionary leader

This is a charismatic leader. They are able to offer perspective on the future, set where they are heading and encourage their team to work together towards a common goal. The visionary leader´s advantage over the commanding leader is their ability to create a far greater positive atmosphere, where workers´ motivation goes beyond simply carrying out their tasks. 

This figure is very much valued in ambiguous situations as they offer a clear vision. However, adopting this approach may also cause frustration when projects fail to succeed. 

The affiliative leader

A leader pursuant to this style demonstrates a great capacity to build emotional bonds within a team and create a positive environment. Business aims are not their sole priority and working to ensure peoples´ wellbeing is, at times, given more importance than the actual job.

Affiliative leaders are skilled at reassuring others which helps employees to share their ideas openly, without fear of rejection. Nevertheless, they find it difficult to confront acts of misconduct or point out standard of work which is beneath expectations.

We will analyse the last three models in entries to come, particularly focusing on coaching leaders, the leadership style which predominates today. 

Alexandra Maratchi

Alexandra Maratchi