The first step in becoming a better leader is understanding and improving your leadership style. Your leadership style is determined by two main things: how you want to lead and how you lead best.
The more comfortable you are with your leadership style, the more confident you are in front of your team and implementing said style. And, while there are quite a few types of leadership styles, you don’t have to pick just one. Your leadership style is most likely going to be a combination of two or even three different styles.
Before you can determine what styles work best for you, let’s break them down:
Also known as managerial style leadership. Transactional leaders value order and systems, often setting goals for team members and using a reward and penalty system. With some encouragement for members to express their creativity, transactional leadership is ideal for producing a reliable, expected outcome.
This style of leadership greatly values their colleagues’ opinions. Also known as the democratic leadership style, ideas and decisions are typically put up for debate. While this makes team members feel valued and heard, it can lead to leaders looking indecisive – knowing when to step in and make the final decision is crucial.
Authoritarian leadership is great for situations where quick and decisive decisions are required – but can negatively affect team members by making them feel devalued and demoralized. An autocratic leader should focus on providing insights and feedback to their team.
Also known as the visionary leader, transformational leadership styles focuses on using empathy, encouragement, and praise to encourage team members to be creative, achieve goals, and improve performance. When used properly, team members feel empowered and loyal but can sometimes feel as though their leader is insincere.
There are two types of delegative leadership styles – or laissez-faire leader styles – unintentional and intentional. Intentional leaders allow team members to set their own schedules and make decisions, giving them autonomy and creative freedom while unintentional leaders lack control and guidance over their teams.
How to Find Your Leadership Style
When determining your ideal leadership style, your biggest challenge is avoiding confusion in your team. Frequently switching styles will mislead your team and negatively impact their work. Your ideal leadership style should be chosen before starting work and adapt as needed.
Your leadership style should grow with you – for example, as your personality and skills grow and adapt with your team, you should implement your new skills in a way beneficial to your team. This could be improving your patience, communication, confidence, adaptability, and more.
The leadership style you align with most will depend on your team. A smaller, result-oriented team may need a transactional or authoritative leader while a creative hybrid team may work best with a transformational or delegative leadership style.
District Offices has office and meeting spaces that can suit any leadership style!