Five Common Leadership Styles To Avoid
When it comes to leadership, there are a lot of different styles out there. Some work better than others, and some can downright ruin a company or team. Here are five common leadership styles to avoid at all costs. Keep in mind that not everyone will fit perfectly into one category—you may find yourself using a blend of two or more of these at times—but it’s important to be aware of them, nonetheless. So, without further ado, let’s look at five leadership styles to avoid.
1. The Micromanager Leader
If you’re a micromanager leader, there’s a good chance your employees dislike you. There’s no way around it—micromanagers are seen as leaders who are constantly hovering and don’t trust employees to do their job. This can lead to low morale and high turnover rates. The micromanager is the kind of leader who wants to control every aspect of their team’s work, no matter how small or insignificant. A big downside to being a micromanager leader is that they often don’t give their teams enough freedom, which can lead them down the path of failure.
2. The Autocratic Leader
Autocratic leaders can make it difficult for employees to express their opinions. These leaders often take all the credit for their team’s work and discourage employee input. They also recognize and enjoy what they have done without giving any consideration to other people involved in projects.
An autocratic leader will often treat employees as if their voices don’t count, which means that this type of person won’t listen when it comes time for decisions being made on certain matters. Instead they typically expect everybody else around them (including employees) to just do things their way.
3. The Laissez-Faire Leader
This leadership style is the opposite of the autocratic style. With laissez-faire leadership, the leader takes a hands-off approach and leaves all the decision-making up to their employees. This can be a good thing if you have a team of experienced and trusted employees, but it can also backfire if employees don’t know what they’re doing.
4. The Visionary Leader
A visionary leader is someone who has a clear vision for the future and knows how to get their team to buy into it. However, I’ve noticed that visionary leaders frequently find themselves overworked because they make everything so urgent in their minds. They may also reject help from other employees, which often only makes things worse.
There are many people who believe that a visionary leader can lead an organization to success. What they may fail to realize is the difficulty in guiding others and maintaining morale when you’re only focused on your vision. Often, visionary leaders may not be present for team meetings or show any empathy toward employees’ concerns outside work hours. Not to mention, it’s hard to get anything done with all the added pressure on top!
This is not to say that having a clear vision for where you want your company to go is a bad thing—far from it. What’s important is being able to connect with your team and gain their trust so that they can work together toward a common goal. Doing this requires excellent communication skills, which many visionary leaders lack. If you’re thinking of becoming a leader or are already in a leadership position, avoid the temptation to become a visionary leader. It can be a sure-fire recipe for disaster.
5. The Couch Potato Leader
The couch potato is the kind of leader who would rather sit back and let others do the work. This leadership style isn’t effective, as it does not work well with helping to motivate a team, and staff can lose trust in their leader.
Turning Things Around
So, there you have it—five leadership styles to avoid. The thing about bad leadership styles is that they can be incredibly damaging to a company or team. Not only do they produce terrible results, but they can also lead to low morale, high turnover rates and general unhappiness in the workplace.
Reflect on your own leadership behaviors. If you find yourself using any of these leadership styles, it’s important to make a change. Talk to your team, get their feedback, and see what you can do to start leading in a more effective way. Your company or team will thank you for it!