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Employee Empowerment

This type of leadership can foster a work environment in which decisions are made and implemented without a lot of back-and-forth discussion, which can lead to increased productivity and efficiency. If you own a company with young employees, this style can be highly effective because it provides direction, assigns specific tasks and establishes standards that are clear and actionable. However, the authoritarian style can also lead to less creativity and buy-in for your employees because they aren’t part of the decision-making process. And because leaders in this style have so much authority, employees may view them as controlling and uncompromising, which can dent morale.

Participative Leadership Effects

The participative leadership style, which is also known as a democratic leadership style, is one in which business owners seek out and encourage suggestions, ideas and input from their staff before making decisions. Participative leaders take action only after soliciting the opinions of management and rank-and-file workers. One major effect of this leadership style is that employees feel as if they are valued and their input matters. This can foster a more cohesive team environment in which workers don’t feel isolated from management and have more “skin in the game,” which boosts buy-in.

From an organizational standpoint, participative leadership may be the ideal option for many small businesses because everyone feels as if they have been given some degree of authority in everyday work processes. However, one possible drawback is that democratic leadership can lead to “paralysis by analysis,” in which decisions are stalled or never made because leaders want to please everyone in the workplace.