by Kristen Thompson
Leadership can be practiced effectively in different ways. Whether you’re a more hands-on leader or one that likes to hang out in the background until you’re called upon, there’s no correct method to leading every team.
Using some of the most common leadership styles, we’ve created a quiz to help you determine what yours is, along with some tips and tricks to help you continue to grow into a great leader. What’s your leadership style?
1. Is your office door open or closed?
A: Closed: My day is filled with meetings and important work. If someone needs support they will go to their supervisor who will schedule a meeting with me when needed.
B: Open! I’m always here for anything my employees need. I want to be a part of the action.
C: Half-open, half-closed: I’m usually quite busy, but in the rare case my team needs me I’m here to help.
2. How do you handle work disagreements among team members?
A: You take a look at the situation and make a decision so everyone can get back to work.
B: You bring the whole team in on the decision to make sure it is the best decision for everyone.
C: You allow your team members to handle it on their own. They’re capable of coming to the right conclusion without you stepping in.
3. You assign a team member with a new project. What does that look like?
A: You layout clear expectations of how you want things done. If they have questions they can speak with their supervisor who can come to me if needed.
B: You work out an objective and a path to get there with that team member. They are welcome to bring creativity to the project if they’d like, and once they are finished we’ll review it as a team for any possible feedback.
C: You will delegate to the appropriate team member and allow them the space to get it done. You’re open to questions, but trust that they won’t let me down.
4. An employee comes to you with a new idea on how to increase productivity in the office. How do you respond?
A: Take their opinion into account, but you know what you’re doing.
B: Have them bring up their idea at the next team meeting and work as a team to decide if it works for everyone.
C: Tell them to go for it. You trust your employees and know that they’ll do what’s best/most effective for them.
Mostly A’s: You’re an authoritarian leader
As an authoritarian leader, you lay out clear expectations and steer outcomes to meet those expectations. You are the most knowledgeable person on your team and have great insight when working on projects. While your teams can lack some creative freedom, your leadership style allows for clear and consistent results. Because you have so much experience/knowledge, decision-making time is cut in half, creating space for other activities.
Our advice: The rigid nature of your leadership style can cause unease within team members who feel like they lack creative freedom, collaboration, or room for input. Set aside time as part of your week to listen to employee feedback and begin to shift your culture to one that allows for a little more wiggle room.
Mostly B’s: You’re a participative leader
Your leadership style is all about democracy. You utilize your team to allow for a collaborative work environment and value their opinions on important work decisions. Your skills allow your team to feel valued and engaged, which is great for productivity. Though there may be disagreements among your team on a specific project or decision, you’re great at stepping in to make the final decision that you know will be best for your team.
Our advice: When everyone has a say, decision-making can be unnecessarily time-consuming and can impact productivity. Not every decision needs to be a team effort. Take control over the small things, and allow for group input on more important decisions.
Mostly C’s: You’re a Delegative leader
In case you couldn’t guess it, your leadership style focuses on delegation. You’re great at assigning projects and responsibilities to different members of your team. The opposite of a micro-manager, you allow for creative freedom and initiative which contributes to a positive work environment. Your style of leadership is great for people to work individually, and you encourage innovation and creativity.
Our advice: Leave room for change. Teams that work under delegative leaders can become comfortable easily, leaving little room for change. Introduce small changes frequently to keep your team adaptive and to use skillsets you may not have known they had.
Don’t see your leadership style here? Tell us in the comments below what your leadership style is and how you relate to our quiz.
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