The Relationships Between Charismatic Leadership & Subordinate Performance
Charismatic leaders have innate abilities to motivate people, according to "Psychology Today." These managers often succeed at improving the work of their employees. The danger with this leadership style, according to the American Society for the Advancement of Project Management, is that if the manager is primarily motivated by self-image rather than company goals, her methods might become overly autocratic and contrary to the needs of her subordinates.
Leaders who are charismatic by nature create a tremendous first impression upon employees. The Business Perspectives website states that charisma is associated with something new and exciting, especially for struggling organizations. Staff members respond to the charm, persuasion and extroverted manner of this type of manager by becoming energized workers. In turn, the leader is lauded by the business world in which he works, and this can feed his desire to increase productivity. He will use his magnetism in speeches to subordinates to inspire their work toward his vision. The relationship between leaders and employees is thus cyclical as each entity works to impress the other.
Bonding between charismatic managers and their staff members occurs quickly. Employees naturally follow a leader they believe is emotionally invested in them and the business. According to the University of Houston, Victoria, charismatic leaders and their followers have strong emotional connections. Charismatic leaders easily express their empathy and concern for the individuals they work with. These managers convince employees in group settings as well as in one-on-one meetings that they are important to her personally, whether that's true or not. Workers perform better for leaders with whom they form a personal connection. If the leader proves to be insincere, employee backlash can result in poor performance as these workers express resentment and disappointment.
Even though the relationship between managers and employees is a business one, a charismatic leader can wield an almost spiritual power over subordinates. "Psychology Today" calls the charismatic leader's ability to inspire followers a primary attribute of this management style. Those who work for this type of manager often report their relationship as one of "serving" a visionary leader. Faith in such a leader has a positive impact on employee performance, but employees can lose faith in the entire organization if a charismatic leader lets them down.
Charismatic leadership is often more akin to traditional authoritarian management than participatory management approaches that allow employees to share in decision making responsibilities and learn to become leaders themselves. If the naturally charismatic leader combines her natural attributes of enthusiasm and magnetism with empowering methods that guide employee growth and professionalism, the business is likely to flourish more than under a singular management approach. This combining of styles does require the leader to put aside her tendency toward egotistic recognition in favor of a role that serves her indirectly, as the business is seen as more of a group effort.