Chapter 8 » Leadership Styles | Business Studies – XII

Leadership style

1.       Autocratic leadership style: – when the authority and decision-making power are concentrated on the leader is known as autocratic leadership style. There is no participation by subordinates. The leader takes full authority and assumes full responsibility. Planning, policies and other working procedures are predetermined by the leader alone. They convey the information about what to do and how to do. He never takes any advice and suggestions of other people. They structure the entire work situation in their own way and expect the workers to follow their orders and tolerate no deviation from their order. They are just like tyrant rulers. The leader who believes and exercised the autocratic leadership style is known as autocratic leader.



  • He/she makes his own decisions and he/she doesn’t take any advice of others because he/she thinks he/she is only superior.
  • His/her position gives him/her personal authority and right to lead the members in any way he/she desires.
  • Reward and punishment is exercised by him/her very strictly. Autocratic leadership style believes on negative motivational tools.
  • An autocrat leader does not give full information to the members. There is only one way communication in order to maintain the position.
  • An autocratic leader describes each job in detail and imposes rigid work standard on his employees. It means the subordinates are compelled to certain work assigned for him.


  • It is useful in emergency or in war.
  • When the workers are undisciplined and uneducated it gives the best results.
  • When the laborers are not organized, it is more effective.
  • There is no need of trained labor. It may be used for untrained workers.
  • It is a prompt process of decision-making as the single person decides for the whole group.


  • Subordinates are not involved in the process of decision-making in autocratic leadership style
  • It doesn’t emphasize on correct evaluation of employee’s performance
  • The moral of employees is so low.
  • There is no chance of management development.
  • There is no chance of two-way communication.
  • Creative ideas and thinking cannot be used in autocratic leadership style.
  • The employees perform the work with negative motivation.
2.       Democratic leadership style: – When the authority and decision-making power are decentralized to the subordinates is known as democratic leadership style. There is participation by subordinates. The leader delegates authority and provides responsibility even to the followers. Planning, policies and other working procedures are determined by the leader along with suggestions of the followers. He conveys the information about what to do and how to do just as a consultant. He takes advice and suggestions of other people. They structure the entire work situation in democratic way. They are just like democratic rulers. The leader who believes and exercised the democratic leadership style is known as democratic leader.



  • A democratic leader delegates the responsibility as per the capability of the employee
  • There is participation of all subordinates in decision-making
  • Human values are also given preference. The leader gives concerns for the followers
  • Democratic leader imposes flexible work standard, designs goals with freedom for the performance of work.
  • A democratic leader emphasizes in results than on action

Advantages: –

  • Good cooperation among employees is made in democratic leadership style
  • Employees are highly satisfied and their morale is increased
  • Human efforts are highly recognized
  • It helps in increasing in productivity
  • Policies, planning and other working procedures become better because different kinds of logic ideas and creativity are mixed
  • Subordinates have grown considerable freedom of action that helps to increase the personal growth and gets opportunity to utilize their capabilities

 Disadvantages: –

  • It takes long time in decision-making
  • It is not suitable for untrained subordinates
  • A leader may  to be responsible in his style
  • It is not suitable when the followers are undisciplined and untrained

3.       Free rein leadership style: – when all the authority and responsibility are delegated to the subordinates is known as Free rein leadership style. The leader who believes on this style is known as free rein leader. The free rein leader doesn’t use the power and leaves the power to the subordinates. He/she doesn’t provide any contribution to make planning and policies. This type of leadership style is very useful when group members are intelligent and fully aware of their roles and responsibilities.



  • Subordinates have complete freedom in decision-making
  • The subordinates are self-directed, self-motivated and self-controlled
  • The role of free rein leader is to provide facilities, materials and information to the employees
  • The leader doesn’t interfere in making planning and policies
Advantages: –
  • The employees are satisfied in their job because they are free in decision-making
  • The morale of employees is developed
  • The employees are highly developed because there is maximum possibility for the development of                   workers
  • The creativity and potentiality of subordinate are fully utilized
  • Leader contribution is ignored.
  • Sometime the subordinates are not self-directed.
  • Subordinates should not get the guidelines of the leader.