Different styles of management

Introduction

There are three main types of management styles that manager’s use, Autocratic, Participatory and Laissez-faire. The autocratic management style involves managers making all the decisions and the employees having no real input at all. The participative style has managers making decisions democratically, and all employees are consulted for their views. The laissez-faire management style has managers having little to do with the day to day running of the business.
The autocratic management style is the belief that in most cases the worker cannot make a contribution to their own work, and that even if they could, they wouldn’t. Autocratic managers attempt to control work to the maximum extent possible. A major threat to control is complexity; complex jobs are more difficult to learn and workers who master such jobs are scarce and possess a certain amount of control over how the job is done. So autocratic managers attempt to simplify work to gain maximum control. Planning of work, including quality planning, is centralized. A strict top-down, chain-of-command approach to management is practiced. Procedures are maintained in exquisite detail and enforced by frequent audits. Product and process requirements are recorded in equally fine detail and in-process and final inspection are used to control quality.
The participatory management style is the belief that the worker can make a contribution to the design of his or her own work. Managers who practice the participatory style of management tend to engage in certain types of behaviour. To engage the workers they establish and communicate the purpose and direction of the organization. This is used to help develop a shared vision of what the organization should be, which is used to develop a set of shared plans for achieving the vision. The manager’s role is that of a leader.

The AFFILIATIVE style has the primary objective of creating harmony among employees and between manager and employees:

The “people first, task second” manager
Avoids conflict and emphasizes good personal relationships among employees
Motivates by trying to keep people happy

Effective when:

Used with other styles
Tasks routine, performance adequate
Counseling, helping
Managing conflict

Least effective when:

Performance is inadequate – affiliation does not emphasise performance
There are crisis situations needing direction

The PACESETTING style has the primary objective of accomplishing tasks to a high standard of excellence:

The “do it myself” manager
Performs many tasks personally and expects employees to follow his/her example
Motivates by setting high standards and expects self-direction from employees

Effective when:

People are highly motivated, competent
Little direction/coordination required
When managing experts

Least effective when:

When workload requires assistance from others
When development, coaching & coordination required