There are several styles of management. At the extreme is the coaching style (democratic) and the boss style (autocratic). Each style has its place and time. Each type of manager could learn a little from the other to create the most productive work environment for their teams.
Coach Management Style
A manager who coaches team members can usually be found working among the team members, using hands-on techniques to improve performance and increase productivity. A coach-style manager often has a great rapport with team members and subordinates, knows each individual by name and has a grasp of each person's work style. This management style encourages feedback and participation in department activities. It gives the team members the freedom to offer suggestions for improvement and a sense of ownership in their tasks. People who are managed by coaches tend to be happier in their jobs.
Boss Management Style
Most of us have worked for this type of manager. It makes for a long day and a lot of stress. This manager focuses on task-oriented activities, resents feedback and takes a zero-tolerance stance regarding employee management. These managers tend to be more critical, put out a lot of fires and always be on edge. Team members come to depend on the boss for everything; when the boss leaves for a few days, daily tasks may come to a grinding halt.
Best of Both Styles
In between the two extremes is a manager that jumps in and participates when someone needs help and lays down the law whenever necessary. The best managers understand that great leadership requires a combination of both coach and boss styles of management to create a workplace environment that allows for feedback and reward, as well as one where everyone knows that the manager's word is final in certain instances.
Modify Your Management Style for Effective Leadership
If you have identified with either extreme management style, you may want to do some further reading or get some training in the the alternate style of management. While no one will ever completely change their personality, learning something of the other style of management could prove very beneficial to you and your team. There are many online resources available for reading, as well as webinars in traditional learning opportunities.
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