Foundational leadership research started in the 1930s. Lewin, Lippitt and White wrote an article in 1939 in the journal of Social Psychology which was the first big study on leadership. People then and now have a lot of opinions about the different styles of leadership. So here are 10 most common workplace leadership styles.

1.Autocratic Leadership Style.

To help visualize autocratic leadership style, there are some well-known autocratic leaders in movies like Darth Vader from ‘Star Wars’, Captain Sobel in the ‘Band of Brothers’ and Miranda Priestly in ‘The Devil Wears Prada.’ These are obviously exaggerations, but they all have autocratic tendencies in common.

A basic description of the autocratic style goes like this-

  • It is an authoritarian, boss-centered approach to leadership and management. The term autocratic is perhaps more commonly used but the term authoritarianism usually means the same thing.
  • These leaders assume full control of the group , goals, and decisions.
  • These leaders centralize decision-making and power. Some researchers describe this approach as an absolute-control approach for the leader over the entire operation.
  • When it comes to communication, it is no surprise that they have a top-down approach. They dictate instructions, policies and activities to the group. They expect followers to comply. It’s a control-compliance relationship.
  • These leaders take little or no input from group members. They are not asking followers for their feedback.
  • They make decisions based upon their perspective of a situation.
  • When it comes to decision making, I picture the autocratic leader coming into a room and just telling people what to do.
  • In terms of how they relate to followers, autocratic leaders establish a high power distance between themselves and everybody else.
  • There are clear unequal power dynamics going on between the leader and the followers
  • Leaders rely heavily on their position of authority. French and Raven call this legitimate authority.
  • When you are an official manager and have a job description that explains your official authority and responsibilities that come with that position.
  • Autocratic leader’s power in other words, comes from their job title. In contrast, autocratic leaders don’t rely on their strong relationships and influence to lead.
  • You don’t usually see autocratic leaders socializing and connecting with their followers in warm ways. They don’t eat meals together with subordinates. They don’t get to know them personally very much.
  • They distance themselves relationally from others in ways that show inequality


  • This style can be useful when making a quick decision, a decisive decision is necessary. For example, when there is a crisis situation, there’s not enough time to gather everybody together and get lots of feedback. Sometimes a delayed decision would be much worse than the leader just making a decision on their own.
  • It’s also useful when you have low-skilled workers who essentially need to be told what to do. When a follower has low skill and low motivation then you have to focus almost entirely on the task and using direct communication.
  • When there is a leadership void and people lack direction, then it’s better to have an autocratic leader.
  • If there is already lots of conflict, an autocratic leader can basically suppress the conflict among participants in the short run. This doesn’t solve the underlying problem that’s causing the conflict, but this style can be used to contain in the short run.
  • Autocratic leadership may not be your favorite style but it is still a style that works under certain circumstances, at least in the short run.


  • This is a very demanding and stressful style for both leader and follower.
  • It requires constant hands-on attention, because followers will wait to be told what to do. That’s the norm this style establishes that the leaders give orders and subordinates comply with those orders.
  • Most followers won’t take initiative under an autocratic leader and participants make more persistent demands for attention from autocratic leaders. Since, followers are not taking action on their own, leading this way requires constant pressure for the leader and the followers.
  • Followers will work hard when the boss is watching, which is a positive aspect of this, but they act out when the leader leaves the room.
  • Another problem is turnover, which is very expensive. Followers are more likely to exit a group or an organisation when they are working under an autocratic leader which is shown by a 2004 article in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology.

2.Democratic Leadership Style.

According to research, different leadership styles cause different outcomes. To help us visualize it, we see the Democratic Leadership Style in characters like Captain Jean-Luv Picard from ‘Star Trek’, Dick Winters, from the ‘Band of Brothers’ and Nova Prime in ‘Guardians of the Galaxy.’ These characters echo what we see in the Democratic Leadership Style.

  • Democratic leaders take a collaborative approach with their followers, even though democratic leader still have a position of power and still make many of the big decisions.
  • They prefer to get feedback and input from followers to help leaders shape those decisions.
  • They like to listen to a range of opinions to make sure they are hearing about all the good options.
  • They have what you call the two-heads-are-better-than-one-philosophy.
  • A leader might even test ideas with followers and say ‘hey, here’s what I was thinking of doing, what do you think?’. In cases like these, the leader may still make the ultimate decision.
  • At other times democratic leaders may delegate power to followers when they can, especially when those decisions directly influence the followers’ jobs. This is called a Decentralized approach to power, authority that contrasts with the centralized approach of autocratic leaders.
  • A democratic leader still has the right to make decisions just like the autocratic leader, but instead delegates those decisions and provides the freedom to followers to make the best choices possible.
  • If a decision goes badly , the democratic leaders are not off the hook, they are still responsible for the outcome and the team decisions. They are not handing their power and responsibility over, they can’t delegate their accountability.
  • In terms of power distance, democratic leaders tend to have more equal relationships between themselves and followers. So they establish a low power distance compared to autocratic leaders.
  • The gap between the leaders and followers does not feel as obvious. To make that concrete, democratic leaders would be more approachable and friendly in conversations and make efforts to connect with followers.
  • They have good communication and might ask followers about their projects and about their lives outside of work and react more spontaneously in conversations.
  • They tend to rely more on mutually beneficial relationships with followers to have that influence.
  • They trust their followers to provide helpful feedback and to make good decisions.


  • Democratic leaders tend to make high quality informed decisions. They gather lots of input, so their decisions are very likely to be supported and executed by their followers
  • Followers of democratic leaders can get more creative and innovative because they are given room to practice problem solving.
  • Democratic leaders get consistent long term productivity out of their followers. This is a key difference between democratic and autocratic leaders. When an autocratic leader leaves the room, their followers do not work as hard. In contrast, democratic leaders, followers work hard whether they are in the room observing or not.
  • Followers are bought into the decisions, goals and directions. These leaders also have good communications with followers.
  • Not surprisingly, followers have a high satisfaction level when working under democratic leaders.


  • When a situation is high pressure and time is short, maintaining the democratic style probably will not help much. If something suddenly happens to an organisation, it might be the best response in the quickest response. That means they will not have the luxury of collaborating in a situation like that.
  • Sometimes a situation requires a judgment call on the part of a leader because consensus is not possible and you may have to make a decision that fractures the harmony of the group for a while.
  • If the leader is a team player, but the follower is not, the Democratic Leadership Style may not be as suitable for that follower.

3.Laissez-Faire Leadership Style.

Laissez-Faire is translated as  ‘Let Do’ or ‘Let Them Do It’. It is a French term that was originally about how to handle the economy. Laissez-Faire Leaders back off and give followers lots of room and space and autonomy to make their own decisions and solve their own problems.

Ronald Reagan, the president, was often mentioned as a classic laissez-faire leader. Some examples of laissez-faire leadership on TV and movies would be Ron Swanson from ‘Parks and Rec’ and Frigga, Thor’s mother in the ‘Marvel Universe.’

  • Compared to autocratic leaders and democratic styles, the laissez-faire leader will give some overall direction, deadlines, goals and resources, but they will then encourage you to do it on your own.
  • They are less likely to check on you for progress updates.
  • They are not going to observe you or watch you very much. It’s a philosophy of non-interference.
  • When they interact with you, they are more likely to listen and give some general advice, and not as likely to micromanage you.
  • They are not going to tell you how to do it. This is because they have a lot of trust in their followers to figure it out.
  • If you come to them for advice they might tell you what they would do personally, but ultimately they expect that you will take that conversation and go make your own decisions.
  • Laissez-Faire Leaders believe that they are at their best and most motivated by autonomy.
  • Many followers prefer this style compared to working with autocratic leaders. In practice, some successful leaders use this style.
  • Warren Buffet is currently the fourth wealthiest person in the world. He runs Berkshire Hathaway and he is a laissez-faire leader who is famous for only scheduling about three or four meetings per month.
  • But this style is not generally effective. There are lots of studies that day that this amount of freedom can cause stress for followers.


  • It works great in some situations especially when your followers are highly motivated, skilled and educated.
  • It can work well in creative industries where people are driven. In these situations laissez-faire leadership can be very satisfying for followers.
  • It can be well motivating because followers can lead a more creative life in the workplace and think of solutions that the leader might not think of.
  • It also requires less top-down pressure and direct supervision. So, it frees the leader to think about the bigger goals of the organisation.


  • It only works well in specific situations. So the big criticism is that it results in low productivity in most cases.
  • For many situations, followers do not use autonomy mainly as a way to be more productive. It’s not useful when competence and motivation are low.
  • Followers get really stressed out when they are confused and lack direction, and the laissez-faire style is not going to help much in that case, it involves other risks.
  • If your followers are not doing a good job, it might be that a hands-off approach doesn’t help you notice the problem. It can also create more rooms for undesirable activities, like bullying or conflict, that you don’t notice.
  • Some people will take advantage of this freedom and autonomy, in other words, to do things other than working hard.

4.Servant Leadership.

It’s commonly thought that a servant is always at the lower end of the hierarchy. But there are some leaders who transform the positive qualities of servitude into strong leadership qualities.

Servant leadership was first conceptualized by Robert K Greenleaf in 1970. a person who is a leader-first leader is more concerned with exerting power and achieving personal gains. On the other hand, a Servant-First leader puts people first.

  • A servant leader relinquishes most of his authority. It’s a completely selfless type of leadership that focuses on improving people at their core and organizations is their entirety.
  • These are strong elements also present in the democratic and the transformational leadership styles.
  • Some of the historical examples of this leadership is Mother Teresa.
  • Servant leaders develop the people within the organisation to great detail.
  • A servant leader even works on developing the community surrounding the realm and the organisation.
  • Servant leadership is a great leadership style because it focuses on improving people as well as organisations.
  • Servant leadership often leads to high employee engagement, highly motivated employees and a strong sense of ethics.
  • A servant leader is only able to meet the needs of those being served, if those needs are understood. Therefore, listening is important, especially listening where a lot of questions are also asked.
  • Servant leaders are emotionally intelligent and this helps them to identify the strengths and weaknesses. Opportunities and threats within a team.
  • Emotional intelligence also helps the leader to know what to push at what time, to which person.
  • All this empathy, holistic development and concern help the servant leader achieve the primary object of leadership which is the development of an organisation.
  • Big picture thinking adds a visionary element to servant leadership. Therefore, servant leaders are able to conceptualize a plan for the way forward. This helps the team to do the day-to-day tasks necessary to achieve the ultimate goal.


  • The morale of the team is high under servant leadership. A leader using servant leadership genuinely cares about the team. People thrive in this setting are highly motivated to put in their best efforts
  • Team members under this leadership are more likely to be loyal to the organisation.
  • Collaborative decision making increases employee engagement. A team works best when the opinions of all team members are valued.
  • Just as for democratic leadership, servant leadership facilitates decision making. They understand that each person brings a unique set of experiences and ideas.
  • Servant leadership means setting strong examples of truly ethical leadership. Although ideas are welcomed, those ideas that negatively impact the organisation or members, are rejected.


  • Building servant leadership takes a long time. Relationship building forms an important part of servant leadership. It takes time and team members need to be engaged and the leader has to take the time to understand who they are and what motivates them.
  • Servant leadership doesn’t work with every organisation. There are some industries where servant leadership is a misfit.
  • When quick decisions are of great importance, servant leadership is far from the best approach.
  • The team can lose sight of goals under servant leadership. The heavy emphasis on holistically developing each team can result in the team losing sight of the organisation’s goals.
  • Servant leadership can also decrease employee motivation. The team starts off with a huge burst of motivation because they feel like they matter. However, that can eventually take a turn for the worse if the leader takes over to solve specific problems or challenges.

5.Commanding Leadership.

Commanding leadership style also known as coercive or directive leadership. Commanding leadership is an ordering and very autocratic leadership style where orders are expected to follow to the letter.

Besides orders being followed commanding leaders also expect 100% compliance with rules, instructions and policies. This can be good in low complexity work situations with low skilled workers.

  • Commanding leadership can be very useful in times of crisis when the time to make decisions is minimal.
  • A commanding gets team members to clearly understand what is expected of them and how they can use their skills to accomplish organisational goals.
  • Team members work with a directive leader to establish clear goals and objectives. Evaluation criteria, deadlines and any subtasks necessary for ensuring that these key performance indicators are met.
  • There is a strong need for firm rules and boundaries in the commanding leadership style. It is important for these leaders to have a sense of control over what subordinates do and how they complete their tasks.
  • The rules and boundaries help bring clarity that is one of the positive aspects of commanding leadership.
  • A commanding leadership should be highly experienced and skilled in the projects, tasks and other work assigned to the team.
  • A directive leader needs to know the competency and pros and cons of each of the team members.


  • The hallmark of commanding leadership is clarity and communication. All team members know what is expected  from them and the rewards that will be  issued for successful task completion.
  • They also know the consequences of not completing a task successfully within the given time frame this clarity can improve job performance
  • Clear rules make it easier to maintain safety and adhere to regulations. There is a reason for commanding leadership being used occasionally in the military.
  • The clear rules and guidelines offered by this style make it possible to create a strong framework for maintaining safety and meeting regulatory requirements.
  • The experience a directive leader provides can help inexperienced teams performing low complexity tasks and the structure they need . The leader outlines the specific tasks and duties that must be followed. This way the leader’s experience is transferred to each member which leads to positive results.


  • The leader must be more experienced than the team because the commanding leadership style relies heavily on the leader’s experience and ability to use that to effectively direct the team. So, leadership style fails if the leader lacks experience.
  • Commanding leadership doesn’t work well in a collaborative environment. The leader gives directions and the team is expected to follow accordingly. Rewards and consequences are used to encourage admirable behaviour.
  • Employee growth is pushed aside for the organisation’s goals and there is no idea generating dialogue worth mentioning and everyone is simply doing what they are told, nothing more and nothing less.
  • Commanding leadership doesn’t do well with highly skilled people in the corporate world. Employees in the corporate world tend to be against this leadership style because it leads to micromanagement and autocratic leadership behaviours.
  • Commanding and directive leaders believe that an established set of rules should always be stringently followed. This creates a work environment where creativity is discouraged.

6.Affiliative Leadership.

Affiliative leadership adopt a people-first approach and attempt to create and sustain a peaceful environment at work. On the surface, the affiliative leadership style may seem ideal since it focuses on a team’s emotional needs.

However, there are some challenges associated with making this modern leadership style work effectively.

  • Affiliative leadership is completely focused on the people and relationships in an organisation. The leader’s primary task is to ensure harmony and friendship in the workplace. It leads to happy employees but can at the same time lead to poor performance.
  • Research revealed that an affiliative leader focuses on resolving team conflict so that all team members feel positively connected to each other.
  • Team tensions often prevent organisations from achieving their goals and affiliative leaders attempt to solve these problems by strengthening relationships and connecting with each team member on an emotional level.
  • Affiliative leadership can be very helpful when a team is in deep crisis or in turmoil.
  • When shaping a new team from scratch, affiliative leadership is extra beneficial since it creates trust and a sense of belonging that can weld the team members together.
  • Affiliative leaders use positive communication to improve team morale and increase the chances of success. This doesn’t mean that the leader is a pushover, instead, the affiliative leader can effectively encourage an employee to rethink his behaviour through positive communication.
  • Thanks to the high level of trust and communication, affiliative leadership normally brings a large amount of flexibility.
  • The climate and harmony require very little in terms of rule. This flexibility also means that the affiliative teams are more open to change and can handle changing circumstances better than many other teams.


  • Affiliative leaders don’t dwell on the shortcomings of a team. Instead, they offer positive yet constructive feedback to their direct reports. They also recognise team members for their contributions they make to the team, no matter how small.
  • Affiliative leaders try very hard to create a harmonious environment. Therefore, they tend to have a knack for quickly spotting conflict and doing whatever they can to resolve it. These leaders don’t wait until conflicts become big issues that threaten the team’s success.
  • Employees experience less stress and higher autonomy . The caring environment where everybody’s emotions are accounted for results in less stress. The emotional focus means people will not be pushed as hard.
  • A business crisis or personal problem can take an emotional toll on employees. The encouraging presence of an affiliative leader helps the team better handle the crisis emotionally. Since, a team can handle the emotional implications of a situation better, they can get back to normal operations quicker
  • Affiliative leaders do well at building a sense of camaraderie and collaboration. A affiliative leader’s team is almost like a family where everyone feels more valued. Therefore more likely to feel empowered to help the team work together.


  • The spirit of camaraderie and positive feedback can work against an affiliative leader. Employees should feel good and always experience positive energy in the workplace. Therefore, an affiliative leader will avoid conflict with employees by overlooking performance issues.
  • There are times when employees need constructive feedback to help them perform more effectively. An effective leader is reluctant to give feedback that can appear negative.
  • The overall goal may be lost because affiliate leaders focus primarily on building harmonious relationships within the organisations. Too narrow minded focus inevitably means that the overall needs and goals of the organisations are pushed aside.
  • Affiliate leaders like to feel happy and positive. Any negative energy is avoided. Therefore, the leader may wait for the difficult situation or conflict to disappear on its own.
  • Employees begin to depend on the affiliative leader to resolve all interpersonal matters. Therefore, they don’t develop their own sense of emotional intelligence and capabilities.

7.Pacesetting Leadership.

Pacesetting leadership is when the leader sets an example of high performance, high pace and high quality. Team members watch the pacesetting leader and her speed, performance and quality of work.

They are then expected to follow suit as the pacesetting leader values results more than anything. A pacesetting leader is guided by the principle of not assigning too difficult tasks to each employee.

  • Pacesetting is more like ‘follow me and do as I do’, where the more authoritarian style of commanding leadership is more like ‘do as I say’.
  • This leadership can be good to reach short-term results but can be detrimental for employee engagement and motivation in the long run.
  • A pacesetting leader is highly self-motivated. This leader has a strong desire to succeed and set a standard of extreme performance and perfection.
  • Invariably a pace setting leader assumes that employees have the same level of self-motivation and expect them to meet the leader’s high performance standards. There is no room for ambiguity.
  • An effective pacesetting leader knows that high quality can’t be expected from a team if requirements are unclear. Therefore, this leader will begin each project by ensuring that requirements are clearly understood before asking employees to complete their assigned tasks.
  • A pacesetting leader expects direct reports to be competent enough to produce the required output without being told how to do it. This means pacesetting leadership isn’t built on micromanagement.
  • Time is always working against the lofty goals that pacesetting leaders strive to achieve. Therefore, these leaders use great initiative to get things done as quickly as possible. The backside of this is that an employee who isn’t keeping up with the leader’s fast-paced approach may be asked to step aside.
  • Pacesetting leaders lead by example, this leader sets the trend for others to follow and those who can’t keep up with the trend are often left at the wayside.


  • Strict timeline and emphasis on high quality output make pacesetting leadership ideal for achieving short term and time sensitive organisational goals. Pacesetting could, for instance, getting that new product introduced on time or getting the sales department to close additional deals.
  • This leadership gives full utilization of the competencies of a highly skilled and experienced team. This kind of team already knows how to effectively utilize each team member to achieve the best results as quickly as possible.
  • Since the end result is of such great importance a pacesetting leader doesn’t sit idle hoping that the team get things done. This leader requires progress updates so that the project’s timeline is kept intact.
  • Although the leader may not have the best approach for resolving the issues, it helps that things aren’t allowed to spiral out of control. Instead, corrective actions can be put into place quickly to remove any roadblocks.


  • A team led by a pacesetting leader can quickly fall apart if each team member isn’t already highly skilled and motivated. Employees who prefer more guidance and opportunities to learn and improve will quickly feel overwhelmed and unmotivated by a pacesetting leader.
  • Instead of focusing on doing their best, team members second guess their work because they aren’t sure whether its up to par. The leader is constantly on the lookout for performance issues which builds tension as the team fear that the leader will either take over people’s tasks or dismiss them.
  • The strong focus on results leave less room for creativity and innovation when there are deadlines to meet and an expectation for consistently high levels of performance. This leads to work becoming short sighted, repetitive and boring.
  • Only one of two options come to the forefront of a pace setting leader’s mind when a project’s timeline is threatened. The leader will take over so that the work gets done on time or get rid of perceived underperformers.
  • The team doesn’t really feel like a team. There’s no focus on establishing relationships and building team morale. Instead, employees fall into the routine of coming to work hurriedly, completing tasks to meet deadlines and going home mentally exhausted from the pressure of a strained work environment.

8.Visionary Leadership.

Visionary leadership is built on inspiring and motivating people to pursue a long term vision, communication, transparency and goal setting. The downside is that visionary leadership can result in a lack of short term focus and rejection of other’s ideas.

The merit of visionary leadership rests on the leader’s ability to clearly articulate a vision that aligns with the company’s objectives and influence organisation members to promote this vision.

  • A visionary leader truly understands the picture and sets a long-term path for the organisation. When applying a visionary leadership style, the vision should also be adequately communicated and explained to the organisation’s members.
  • A great visionary leader manages to communicate and market the vision so that members feel inspired and understand how they will benefit from this.
  • Visionary leaders often use powerful metaphors and storytelling to ensure acceptance and proper spreading of the vision.
  • Nelson Mandela and Elon Musk are one of the best examples of visionary leadership.


  • Under visionary leadership there is a clear idea of the overall goal and everyone is working towards it. Everyone knows where the team is heading. Temporary setbacks don’t distract visionary leaders in achieving the overall vision. After all, the end goal is what really matters.
  • Visionary leaders are proactive and can often foresee challenges. This includes change in the outside world that might affect the organisation, such as politics, world events, technology development and many other things.
  • Visionary leaders value innovation and creativity and help the team to thrive in these areas. A great vision inspires unity and gets everyone on the same page. This can be truly powerful and drive performance significantly.


  • Such great emphasis is placed on the future that the visionary leader often loses sight of the present. Resulting, less emphasis on the details that impact the organisation’s day to day operation.
  • The vision may be lost if it’s too intertwined with the leader’s personality or due to an adequate succession planning. There is a risk of fixating on the long run which impacts objectivity and can lead to other potential good ideas being tossed aside.
  • A visionary leader could quickly get the team excited about a project, but often lose this momentum due to the lack of follow-through.

9. Coaching Leadership.

Coaching leadership is when a leader coaches them to develop themselves. Coaching leadership focuses on improving employees to become better individuals and professionals in the long term.

Coaching leadership can be difficult and time consuming. We often limit coaching to the world of sports despite its numerous applications in other areas of leadership.

  • Coaching leadership has the power to influence ordinary people to do extraordinary things in sports, business, institutions, sales and many other fields.
  • A coach won’t create a successful team if the team doesn’t collaborate. It’s less about maintaining hierarchy and status and more about supporting what’s best for the team. Coach will give direction to help team members develop their skills but this is still within a collaborative environment.
  • Helping people become their best selves isn’t a simple task. A coach should think creatively about approaching the coaching process to develop each team member so the team collectively achieves the best result.
  • The best coach knows that their guidance should gradually be reduced so that each team member develops a greater sense of autonomy.
  • Team members don’t know how bad or how well they are doing unless they receive feedback. Constructive criticism is necessary for their growth. Coaches know how to use the task behaviour component of coaching leadership to appropriately express their feedback.
  • Coaches should sacrifice their time to motivate team members to own their skills and become the best versions of themselves.
  • In order to coach well, a leader needs to understand the person being coached on an emotional level through empathy. The leader can calibrate how to challenge and develop the individual and know when to adjust the pressure on performance.


  • People enjoy working with coaching leaders because coaches help people improve their skills so that they can perform at their best. Therefore, coaching leaders can create a work environment where people are highly motivated, eager to learn and willing to collaborate.
  • Team members don’t have to guess what they are required to do. With the coaching leadership style, their coach makes expectations clear and guides the team members towards developing their skills needed to accomplish their tasks and long term goals.
  • Coaching leadership requires a lot of personal mentorships to develop each team member’s skills appropriately. As team members learn, they become more productive and are more likely to provide mentorship opportunities to others.
  • Coaching can identify weaknesses and transform them into strengths. A team’s weaknesses can threaten everything an organisation has built. Hence, the weaknesses also need to be addressed.


  • Coaching a whole team of an organisation is not just team consuming but it also requires a lot of patience. Managers often have too little time to complete their assignments, much less to help each team member improve their skills.
  • Only Few people are genuinely effective coaches because coaching is difficult. It requires confidence, experience and the ability to give meaningful advice. Those who do it ineffectively threaten the growth of an organisation.
  • The coaching leadership style will only work if team members are committed to the process. Too much responsibility rests on the leader’s shoulders, if they aren’t, there should be a strong commitment to collaboration and self-development early on in the coaching relationship.

10. Transformational Leadership.

In transformational leadership, leaders, with the help of team members, identify the needed change, generate a vision via inspiration to guide the change, and execute the change in unison with the team members.

  • When employees are motivated to perform well by the leader’s behaviour, it is called transformational leadership. The attitude of the team members and the company as a whole is influenced positively.
  • Transformational leaders are flexible to changes in various circumstances, share a combined awareness, are inspirational leaders to the team, and are able to self-regulate.
  • The leader is admired for practicing for the heat he preaches and serves as a perfect example to the followers. The qualities sought by transformational leaders in his followers are evident in the leader itself.
  • A clear vision is created and resented by transformational leaders, which motivated and inspired followers. Followers can be easily motivated by transformational leaders through their coherence.
  • The leader tends to be genuinely concerned about their follower’s needs and emotions. They help the followers realize their full potential and thus self-actualize. The trust between the company members and the leader builds due to the personal attention given to each member.
  • Under this leadership, an ethical environment at workspaces with comprehensible values, principles, and priorities are promoted. Such a leader emphasized the culture of working for common goals instead of an individual’s personal goals within the company.


  • Employees are motivated by transformational leaders in terms of accepting and executing new changes. Believing in the changes themselves helps them convince others better and, in turn, aids employees in reaching their maximum potential.
  • In addition to working towards a final aim, a transformational leader also motivates employees to master new skills. This creates a flourishing culture that leads to quality work from employees and improves detail orientation.
  • Among various leadership styles, this one has the maximum ability to retain employees and for the longest time. It can also retain customers due to the leader’s appeal.
  • It is important to keep your employees encouraged and involved to attain maximum productivity. Transformational leaders are capable of identifying their follower’s needs. This helps them discover ways to motivate their followers to do their best.


  • The hold of a transformational leader is his biggest power. His hold over people reduces when his vision is not agreed upon hence stripping him of his power.
  • Being original and living up to the company’s principles and culture are stressed a lot by transformational leaders. Employees may experience burnout by this continuous pressure to seek the company’s vision and be proud of its accomplishments.
  • Transformational leader has a very wide vision so supporting a vision based on the bigger picture is very different from attaining it in real life with lucid operational strategies.
  • According to studies, sometimes managers may misconstrue their actions to be impairing transformational leadership when they are not in reality. According to workers, they were managed oppositely, i.e., they were provided transactional focus.
  • Continuous conflict and hesitation or unwillingness to participate might be seen when employees feel the need to make all decisions in unison.

Being a leader is one of the most important and hard working job. In order to fulfil this responsibility, you need to unpack a three-step pattern.

  • Individual Contributor

The first step is you have to become a great individual contributor. That means that on your team you were hired for a role and you have to do that role really well. Remember that you are an expert, you have to bring your expertise to bear. If you have a deadline, you have got to hit that deadline. You have got to make sure that you are doing your part and pulling your weight.

  • Develop People Skill

The second thing that you have to do as an individual contributor is develop better people skills. You have to get along with your team members. You have to get along with clients. If you can not get along with people, then no one’s gonna think of you as a potential leader in the future.

  • Handling Pressure

Third thing you have to do is to handle pressure well. Sometimes a customer will complain or someone else on the team is really hard to get along with. You are going to face some kind of problem from time to time. If you handle it well then people will start to develop a trust in you.

How to Find Your Leadership Style?

Know Your Values.

Your values are definitely going to affect how you consciously and unconsciously lead your team because it’s your values. It is what you believe and what you value in yourself and others, that is what you have built up. Our values are our guiding principles for life. When your values are stated that makes your life very easy but when they are unstated it makes it a little more complicated. Try to communicate what you are getting across.

In addition to our own personal values, we often deal with organisational values. Whatever organisation you are part of, is going to set its own set of values. As leaders, it is one of your job to be able to understand your own values, to be able to understand your organisational values and to find a way to reconcile any difference between those so that we can make consistent decisions to communicate values clearly to our team and have them go on.

Determine Key Leadership Traits.

Your leadership style is really born from your natural tendencies. Some people will say that traits can not be changed because you are born with your personality traits and you can not change them. But this is not always true.

Though, it takes a lot of time and a lot of conscious decisions sto develop a trait or change a bad trait. Honesty, decisiveness, commitment and even humor to be considered as an important key leadership trait.

Determine Leadership Skills.

Leadership skills are the tools that you need to be able to have to execute on living up to your traits and values. Communication, public speaking, accounting, finance, computer programming, leadership management, communication skills, diplomatic skills, political skills etc. are the important part of leadership.

Understand your Communication Style.

It’s important to understand Your communication style and how you come across to others. Your team members are going to do things based on how you communicate. Understand all the leadership styles and see which one of them you are getting more lean-to.

Learn about the communication style of all these leadership styles mentioned above and the one you can naturally relate to, might be your style.