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Leadership Styles II

Style of leadership is the manner in which you go about communicating with those whom you lead. There are many things to be taken into accou...

Style of leadership is the manner in which you go about communicating with those whom you lead. There are many things to be taken into account when determining what style of leadership is appropriate for a given situation. You must determine what is called for in the situation and what types of communications are possible, or necessary (This is part of Degree In Business: Online Business Degree, Degrees In Business, Business Degree Online, Degree in Business) types of business degreesYou also must consider the capabilities of those whom you are leading and the con­straints of time. Knowledge of the geography, the political atmosphere, and the general mood of the populace will also be factors in your leader­ship style and decision making process. The three leadership styles that will be discussed are the authoritarian, the participative, and the delegative leadership styles.

Different situations call for different leadership actions or styles. As an MCJROTC cadet, you will face a variety of different situations that will require you to make a decision about the leadership style that is most appropriate. Therefore, it is important that you understand all three leadership styles.
Leadership Styles II
Authoritarian Leadership Style
A leader displays the authoritarian leadership style when subordinates are told what is to be done and how it is to be done without the leader consulting others for advice or ideas. This style is quite often appropriate for situations involving the military. In using the authoritarian leadership style, one should remember that it is not necessary to be loud or abusive. There is no need to demean or belittle a subordinate in order to establish authority.

Occasions when the situation at hand will not allow sufficient time for the participation of others in the decision making process, may require the leader to use the authoritarian leadership style. In times such as these, it will be necessary for the leader to make a decision quickly and firmly. On the other hand, a situation calling for the authoritarian leadership style may be one where the task at hand simply does not require input from others. Often, it is a situation where there is much at stake and little room for error.

For example, such a situation can occur in a football game. If a team is behind by six points with only two minutes to play and the ball is on their own twenty yard line, some decisions need to be made quickly. Whether it is the coach or the quarterback that is calling the plays, there is little time for consultation or discussion concerning the play that should be called. There is also little room for error. For these reasons, the person making the decisions must act quickly and decisively.

In the Marine Corps, situations arise in which the authoritarian leadership style is the best style to use. Just as in a football game, there are moments when there is little time to accomplish the game plan. For example, it might be necessary for a Marine to replace supplies that have been delayed due to inclement weather; or, in a combat situation, a Marine might have to make advances against the enemy who is inflicting heavy casualties. In these situations, action must be quick and decisive.

It is necessary to see that situations such as these do not create morale problems. In a situation involving the lack of supplies, morale can become a problem. The supplies might be food, weapons, ammunition, or fuel. All are essential to a smoothly functioning military unit. The combat situation speaks for itself. When lives are at stake, action must always be swift and decisive.

As a MCJROTC leader, you may at times find it necessary to use the authoritarian leadership style. For example, you are the squad leader and your squad is participating in a drill competition. At the last minute, one of your squad members is unable to participate. You must decide who will replace the cadet in the competition.

A situation such as this requires that you act quickly. It is also necessary that you take into consideration as many factors as possible before making a decision. You should find out who is available and who is proficient at drill.

The Follower
In an authoritarian situation, you must make sure that you understand your followers' capabilities. Again, football can be used as an illustration. In order for the person calling the plays in the last two minutes to make the best possible decision, that individual must be familiar with the players and their capabilities. If you know that your quarterback has a sore arm, you will have to go with medium range passes. If you have a running back with phenomenal speed, you might want to try to get the ball to him in the open field. Regardless of what play is called, if you do not know what your players are capable of, your chances of making a correct decision will be slim. This is not to say that if you do have all available information, you will make the best decision. It is to say that you will be in a position to do what is best for the team.

The example of the football team illustrates how important it is to know your followers in a unit. It is necessary that you know their abilities and backgrounds. You must be familiar with their knowledge of equipment and tactics. In this way, you will know which cadet is best suited for a specific task.