Most business experts agree that there are several distinct categories that managers fall under. Depending on where you work and what your team is like, some of these might be more effective than others. Which management style matches yours?

  • Autocratic: A manager with this style often makes decisions without a lot of input from the people around them. It often leads to faster decisions and is good in times of crisis, but it can be ultimately alienating to employees.
  • Consultative: Consultative managers allow for more discussion, often soliciting or allowing opinions, but they remain the final decision maker. It can sometimes cause division in a team if a decision is based on input from some but not others. It can be a good method for managers who have more specialized teams.
  • Persuasive: Decision making control remains with the manager here as well, but a persuasive manager is often more open to listening to evidence and hearing pros and cons from the people they manage. It’s harder for this style to be effective if the team doesn’t support or trust management.
  • Democratic: Managers with this style allow employees the opportunity to engage in decision making and create an environment where decisions are based on the input of the majority of the team. It’s a more open style of management communication but can slow down decisions during the collecting and consideration of input from an entire team.
  • Laissez-faire: This hands-off approach to management means that employees make the majority of decisions with management only stepping in when necessary. Their role is more of a mentor. This management style is popular in businesses that need employees who are willing to take risks. It can lead to difficulty in creating change and actually making decisions in some cases.

Understanding how you manage employees is a good way to identify if you’re connecting with your team and why – or why not. It gives you room to understand where you can make improvements and changes that help you be more relatable and more effective.

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