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Failure of Participative Management

Encourages Creative Solutions

When you encourage employees to give their opinions on company issues, you will get a variety of solutions to choose from. To be involved in the decision-making process for the company, the staff must be intimately involved in how the company operates. Participative leadership empowers employees to use their creativity to develop more productive work processes and make the company more efficient.

Increases Employee Retention

A participative style of leadership offers employees more than just the opportunity to improve their income through good performance. It gives your staff members the chance to be active in determining the future success of the company. Allowing employees to be active in the growth of the organization encourages those employees to stay with the company to see their plans result in success. This will improve employee retention and cut down on the costs of turnover.

Decreases Competition, Increases Collaboration

It’s common in office environments for workers to be competitive, especially high achievers. While a competitive spirit can boost productivity, excessive competitiveness can cause cutthroat tactics, backstabbing and other disruptive behavior. When employees are included in decision-making, however, the environment often becomes one of collaboration instead. Rather than seeing their peers as competitors, workers see their coworkers as associates working towards common goals that will benefit everyone.

Choosing Level of Participation

Between the autocratic management style-where management makes all the decisions and tells subordinates what to do-and a style where employees make all the decisions, which is often called delegation style, there are other styles with varying levels of allowing employees to participate in decision making.

Consultation style is one where management asks employees for their opinions before making the decision. The manager may consider the feedback from employees, but ultimately, the manager makes the decision which may or may not include what the employees preferred.

Joint decision-making style takes it a step further. In addition to asking subordinates for their ideas and opinions, management and subordinates make the decisions together.

There is no management law that says managers must choose one and only one style of management. One of the decisions you can make as the owner or manager of a small business is the style of management you want to use. It’s fine to use a blend of styles, or to use different participative levels depending on the situation. If you find the style you chose isn’t working, tweak it or abandon it. The choice is up to you.