When it comes to Leadership there are a fair few different styles out there. Some of us are the creative types, some of us are more strict, some less – in fact, the study of differing leadership techniques is not a new thing, and has been ongoing since the early nineteenth century. As we progress into a more Digital era and pitching ideas becomes a daily occurrence, it is becoming increasingly necessary to look back upon these categorised styles of leadership, identify which bracket we fall into on an individual level, and recognise the areas in which we might improve. Now more than ever we need to be willing to adapt to change; and, as ever, it all starts from the top.
What sort of Leader are you?
According to academic consensus, there are four main category of leader, and all are filled with sub-categories into which the individual will fall. Let's take a look at the basic categories to give you an idea of where you are and how you might improve your pitching skills...
These are the leaders that rule with an iron fist. They like staff to be punctual and do things correctly, usually via the rulebook. Authoritarian leaders tend to suffer through closed lines of communication with staff, as orders are given and opinions not received. If you fall into this bracket try having a staff meeting now and again, and listening to what the workers have to say - especially before a pitch. No matter how smart you are more heads are better than one, and they may have spotted something vital that you have overlooked.
These leaders are still authoritative, but the relationship with staff is akin to a fatherly or motherly attitude. Although softer than their forebears, these leaders are still tough. They communicate with staff but are unlikely to fulfil requests or suggestions. These leaders should examine their staff suggestions closely before a pitch, especially ideas that were dismissed without proper consideration. These leaders must realise that staff have the potential to be managers one day.
A Democratic leader is one who operates with as much staff consent as they can, while delicately balancing control. These leaders often suffer from lack of respect if they are not authoritative enough, but are also likely to have productive, free-thinking staff who work well. To improve pitches these leaders need to assert authority over the final details and be sure that they have a well rehearsed pitch wherein team contributors know what to say and when to say it.
These leaders are the type who trust employees to work alone most of the time. They have little to do with day to day decisions and often employ highly skilled staff. When it comes to pitching coordination and organisation is what will save the day. The Laissez Faire leader needs to get everyone together in the week before the pitch and get organised. Everyone needs to know what everyone else is doing for a new client to have trust in you team.
Knowing what style of leader you are is an important step to understanding how you can get into the right mindset when leading your organisation.
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