Different Types of Leadership Styles

There are 12 different type of leadership styles for leading their team members in the organization for getting more productivity and reaching organizational goals.

Lewin’s Leadership Styles

Psychologist Kurt Lewin developed his framework in the 1930s, and it provided the foundation of many of the approaches that followed afterwards. He argued that there are three major styles of leadership:

  • Autocratic Leadership
  • Democratic leadership
  • Laissez-faire 

1. Autocratic Leadership

In this leadership the leader holds all authority and responsibility. In this leadership, leaders make decisions on their own without consulting subordinates. They reach decisions, communicate them to subordinates and expect prompt implementation. Autocratic work environment does normally have little or no flexibility.

In this kind of leadership, guidelines, procedures and policies are all natural additions of an autocratic leader. Statistically, there are very few situations that can actually support autocratic leadership.

2. Democratic leadership

Make the final decisions, but they include team members in the decision-making process. They encourage creativity, and people are often highly engaged in projects and decisions. As a result, team members tend to have high job satisfaction and high productivity. This is not always an effective style to use, though, when you need to make a quick decision.

3. Laissez-faire

leaders give their team members a lot of freedom in how they do their work, and how they set their deadlines. They provide support with resources and advice if needed, but otherwise they don’t get involved. This autonomy can lead to high job satisfaction, but it can be damaging if team members don’t manage their time well, or if they don’t have the knowledge, skills, or self motivation to do their work effectively. Laissez-faire leadership can also occur when managers don’t have control over their work and their people.

4. Strategic Leadership Style

Strategic leadership is one that involves a leader who is essentially the head of an organization. The strategic leader is not limited to those at the top of the organization. It is geared to a wider audience at all levels who want to create a high performance life, team or organization.

The strategic leader fills the gap between the need for new possibility and the need for practicality by providing a prescriptive set of habits.  An effective strategic leadership delivers the goods in terms of what an organization naturally expects from its leadership in times of change. 55% of this leadership normally involves strategic thinking.

5. Transformational Leadership

Unlike other leadership styles, transformational leadership is all about initiating change in organizations, groups, oneself and others.

Transformational leaders motivate others to do more than they originally intended and often even more than they thought possible. They set more challenging expectations and typically achieve higher performance.

Statistically, transformational leadership tends to have more committed and satisfied followers. This is mainly so because transformational leaders empower followers.

6. Team Leadership

Team leadership involves the creation of a vivid picture of its future, where it is heading and what it will stand for. The vision inspires and provides a strong sense of purpose and direction.Team leadership is about working with the hearts and minds of all those involved. It also recognizes that teamwork may not always involve trusting cooperative relationships. The most challenging aspect of this leadership is whether or not it will succeed. According to Harvard Business Review, team leadership may fail because of poor leadership qualities.

7. Cross-Cultural Leadership

This form of leadership normally exists where there are various cultures in the society. This leadership has also industrialized as a way to recognize front runners who work in the contemporary globalized market.

Organizations, particularly international ones require leaders who can effectively adjust their leadership to work in different environs. Most of the leaderships observed in the United States are cross-cultural because of the different cultures that live and work there.

8. Facilitative Leadership

Facilitative leadership is too dependent on measurements and outcomes – not a skill, although it takes much skill to master. The effectiveness of a group is directly related to the efficacy of its process. If the group is high functioning, the facilitative leader uses a light hand on the process.

On the other hand, if the group is low functioning, the facilitative leader will be more directives in helping the group run its process. An effective facilitative leadership involves monitoring of group dynamics, offering process suggestions and interventions to help the group stay on track.

9. Transactional Leadership

Transactional leadership is a pretty basic, foundational form of leadership. It involves giving tangible rewards and incentives to the employees in order to fulfill the company’s goals. Purely exchange-based, this type of leadership chooses to stick the status quo of the organization. A typical transactional relationship involves specifying what is expected of the employees, clarifying how to meet these expectations, and doling out rewards and incentives that are contingent to the meeting of these expectations.

10. Coaching Leadership

Coaching leadership involves teaching and supervising followers. A coaching leader is highly operational in setting where results/ performance require improvement. Basically, in this kind of leadership, followers are helped to improve their skills. Coaching leadership does the following: motivates followers, inspires followers and encourages followers.

11. Charismatic Leadership

In this leadership, the charismatic leader manifests his or her revolutionary power. Charisma does not mean sheer behavioral change. It actually involves a transformation of followers’ values and beliefs.

Therefore, this distinguishes a charismatic leader from a simply populist leader who may affect attitudes towards specific objects, but who is not prepared as the charismatic leader is, to transform the underlying normative orientation that structures specific attitudes.

12. Visionary Leadership

This form of leadership involves leaders who recognize that the methods, steps and processes of leadership are all obtained with and through people. Most great and successful leaders have the aspects of vision in them.

However, those who are highly visionary are the ones considered to be exhibiting visionary leadership. Outstanding leaders will always transform their visions into realities.