Leadership , in common language , is an environmental influence ( it can be social or political or religious in nature ) in which a person can influence his or her followers to accomplish a common objective .If you are working in corporate setup , then you can utilize your leadership skills to achieve the organizational goals by the effective utilization of available resources . However, you need to understand your leadership style and utilize it for achieving the goals.
You can spend some time alone and think of your recent activities where you have participated as a team member or manager. Analyze those situations which affected the outcome of these activities. Identify the roles you played and the coordination activities you performed. All these information will help you to indentify your leadership style. There are four major leadership styles: autocratic style, participative style, laissez-faire or free rain style, and narcissistic style. You may have one of these styles which are the result of your philosophy, attitude, and life long experience.
Once you are ready with the data related to your past activities and the next step is to match theses data with the major behavioral patterns of each leadership style. In last few projects, if you have taken decisions based on your own understating and have directed major activities without inviting inputs from your team members; then you have autocratic or authoritarian style. You might be happy for timely completion of projects, but this style may not be suitable for handling large and complex projects where you need to work with multiple teams from different domain areas.
If you feel encouraged to engage your team members for the decision making process, then you have participative or democratic style. You always love to seek input from your team members and encourage them to share their views. You always ensure that your members should get rewarded for their contributions. This is all good for a situation where you have more control over the processes; you have enough lead time for delivery. But, if the situation demands immediate delivery, then autocratic style comes handy for you to deliver the outcome.
If you find that in most cases you enjoyed the tasks because you did little for tasks and your team members did the major work. In fact you like to find some ways to evade the major responsibilities and want your team members to handle the situation. If the outcome is good, then you are the first person to come on stage to take the credit. But, if the outcome is below expectation, you never hesitate to dump blame on your team member. Here you have laissez-faire or free rain style of leadership. This style is not effective for any kinds of serious assignments.
As a professional, every professional carries some degree of arrogance, egoism, and addiction to powers. If your findings indicate that in most projects, you handled the situations with arrogance, looked for opportunity for gaining power , ignored the feeling of team members , took all possible steps to ensure your promotions ; then you have a narcissist style of leadership . Leaders of this style always look for their own ends. They are least interested for the group empowerment, or member motivation or the best outcome.
By this time, you might have found out your own leadership style. A leader can switch from one style to another depending on the situations .A judicious selection of autocratic style or participative style can help a leader to realize faster outcome, better members’ participation, and enhanced group performance.