Let’s first put some words to describe different leadership styles.
- Commanding - “The buck stops here. That means it’s on me to take charge, make important decisions, and ensure things are done right.”
- Autocratic - “A good leader is confident and decisive. When it’s crunch time, my team depends on me to act and make good choices.”
- Democratic - “I may make the final decision, but I include the rest of the team in the decision-making process. Their perspective is important.”
- Servant - “I see myself as a servant leader - someone who secures the resources and supports my team’s needs. If I can help them do their jobs, they’ll take care of the important tasks.”
- Coaching - “Being a team leader is, first and foremost, an opportunity to encourage individual growth and development in every member of my team.”
- Affiliative - “The key to success is a good team dynamic. If everyone’s connected and works well together, we can accomplish anything.”
- Laissez-Faire - “I can be preyy hands-off. My team will let me know when they need my help.”
- Transactional - “My team knows what’s expected of them and what they signed up for. If they’re not pulling their weight, I’ll be the first to let them know.”
- Bureaucratic - “With the right procedures in place, teams can pretty much run themselves. My main job is to perfect the process and make sure the team follows it.”
- Transformational - “This project is an opportunity to demonstrate our abilities - I have big changes in mind for how we can do things as a company, and it all starts here.”
- Charismatic - “My number one priority is to inspire my team to give this project their all. My ability to help them focus and give 110% is the key to project success.”
- Visionary - “As long as I plant a clear picture of where we’re going and why to motivate my team, how we get there isn’t as important.”
- Pacesetting - “Being a leader means holding myself to the highest standards. If I don’t set the right example, how can I expect any different from my team? There’s always room to improve!”
How would I describe my leadership style?
I have a few defaults.
Servant, Coaching, Affiliative, Pacesetting.
Servant - I see myself as a support to the wider team. I’m in service of them. It’s my job to help them get the tools and things they need to do their work well. Coaching - I believe in supporting growth. I’ll take bets on people who can grow into roles. I find it deeply satisfying when someone in my area has expressed growth. Affiliative - I value connection and having a good team dynamic. Connection is important. Pacesetting - I hold myself to the standards I would expect of my team and am very rarely satisfied with where we are at. There is always room to improve.
I’m working actively on developing my transformational, charismatic and visionary styles, and I think I’ve made good inroads in these areas.
While I can, I rarely take on a commanding or autocratic approach.