7 Common Leadership Styles

by Carl Hose; Updated September 26, 2017

Some people are natural born leaders. Being a leader requires the ability to take control of a situation, make decisions and inspire others to follow. There is more than one type of leader. The style with which you lead often has a great deal to do with how well you lead. While each of these styles can be effective, you may find that some people respond better to one style over the other.

Autocrat

The autocrat-leader has little faith in his subordinates. This type of leader wants very little, if any, input from those who follow him. Rarely does he ask for input or thoughts on how things should be run. The autocrat gives directives and expects them to be followed, often doling out heavy consequences to those who don't do as instructed. This type of leadership is more in line with a dictatorship.

Democratic

The democratic leader is strong and takes charge when necessary, but not without gathering input from her followers. The democratic leader is likely to put options to a vote to ensure decisions made are fair. Democratic leaders are concerned with the goal and how it affects the group, refraining from self-serving decisions at all costs.

Intellectual

An intellectual leader is willing to take charge of a situation when his knowledge permits. He is not looking for a group of followers, nor does he want one. He is often a reluctant leader, using his knowledge to assist in the group goal without doing any of the actual leading.

Persuasive

A persuasive leading is a passive/aggressive leadership style. This type of leader has a knack for convincing others to follow her because she is entertaining or likable. The persuasive leader never has to put a lot of energy into getting people to follow. Groups of people are often drawn to this personality and willing to follow for this reason.

Bureaucratic

Those leaders who go strictly by the book practice a bureaucratic leadership style. There can be no question of the authority of this leadership style because the rules are adhered to at all costs. This is the foundation and principle of leaders who lead in this fashion. Bureaucratic leadership is often a highly inflexible leadership style.

Authoritative

Authoritative is similar to the autocrat but less strict. Autocrats expect followers to follow because the autocrat leader says to follow. Authoritative leaders expect their followers to follow because they know. Authoritative leaders typically inspire their followers through the sheer power of their knowledge.

Hands Off

The hands-off style is a silent leadership style in which a leader lets his subordinates do as they want, within reason, monitoring from afar and stepping in only when things go seriously awry. The hand-off leader has great faith in his followers and that faith translates into a leadership style that inspires followers.

About the Author

Carl Hose is the author of the anthology "Dead Horizon" and the the zombie novella "Dead Rising." His work has appeared in "Cold Storage," "Butcher Knives and Body Counts," "Writer's Journal," and "Lighthouse Digest.". He is editor of the "Dark Light" anthology to benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities.