Leadership Styles


As the fearless Nelson Mandela said, a leader possesses the character of a shepherd. He remains behind his followers and allows the strongest members to go ahead of the others without realizing that a leader is directing them from behind. In other words, leadership is a collective activity in which the leader natures a platform where others can step up and lead. Leadership is diverse. Its meaning may vary from one situation to another. Nonetheless, it is unrelated to the stature a person holds in a company and it is more about development and transition of a positive attitude to other members to inspire them to achieve the shared goal. Democratic leadership remains to be the most effective leadership style.

There are five types of leadership namely: autocratic, transactional, democratic, transformational, and liberal leadership. Each leadership style has its uniqueness. However, democratic leadership outweighs the others as it utilizes a more balanced approach by valuing the affirmation and collaboration of followers. Further, it values the participation, engagement, and involvement of team members while still respecting the preferences of every member.

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Democratic or participative leadership is a type of leadership, in which group members are allowed to actively participate in the decision-making process. In this type of leadership, everyone has an opportunity to contribute, share their ideas, and deliberations are encouraged. Although the process majorly focuses on group equivalence, and free flow of thoughts, the leader is always there to provide guidance and control (STU, 2018). Democratic leaders share the responsibility of making decisions and solving problems with their team members while still possessing veto power over the final decision. The participation and involvement of other team members is highly valued and the inclinations of every member are recognized and respected. By doing so, the leader creates a friendly environment for members which boosts their morale and motivates them to generate and provide creative resolutions. Additionally, it provides a cooperative environment and spirit of teamwork.

The main reason why democratic leadership is termed as participative is that it relies on the participation of its employees. The leader, in this case, aims at nurturing employees to invest in the company through investing them via their roles in the organization. As such, employees are encouraged to formulate achievable targets and acknowledge their success. The leader assists employees in developing strategies that can assist them to evaluate their performance. Further, they drive employees to advance in their jobs through promotions (Iqbal, 2015). This in return increases the morale of the employees and encourages them to perform better increasing the general productivity of the company.

Bill Gates and Steve Jobs are good examples of leaders who have used democratic tactics to improve the performance of their followers and companies. For instance, Gates allowed his people and precisely the management to govern themselves and gave attention to their discernment. Similarly, Steve Jobs saved Apple from a downfall after he assumed a democratic role, which saw Apple climb a notch higher (Iqbal, 2015). He utilized democratic leadership by hiring additional proficient leaders who he trusted with the excellence of the company (Iqbal, 2015). He encouraged and mentored several leaders who would make crucial decisions in the company. Consequently, Apple has remained a world-leading company.

Democratic leadership requires both an exceptional leader and a unique participating team. Every member should be committed to the participation process and as a result, the set goals will be achieved.



Iqbal, N., Anwar, S., & Haider, N. (2015). Effect of leadership style on employee performance. Arabian Journal of Business and Management Review5(5), 1-6. Retrieved from; https://s3.amazonaws.com/academia.edu.documents/50036881/effect-of-leadership-style-on-employee-performance_-most_vvip_complete_framwork.pdf?response-content-disposition=inline%3B%20filename%3DArabian_Journal_of_Business_and_Manageme.pdf&X-Amz-Algorithm=AWS4-HMAC-SHA256&X-Amz-Credential=AKIAIWOWYYGZ2Y53UL3A%2F20191004%2Fus-east-1%2Fs3%2Faws4_request&X-Amz-Date=20191004T155920Z&X-Amz-Expires=3600&X-Amz-SignedHeaders=host&X-Amz-Signature=1ad7665b70cb7c87a6d0ced25933cf8bcdb78b5a66eca009328fd39343dacdf0

St. Thomas University, (STU). (2018).What is Democratic/Participative Leadership? How Collaboration Can Boost Morale. Retrieved from; https://online.stu.edu/articles/education/democratic-participative-leadership.aspx

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