Nowadays, there are many leaders that influence the world, whether Abraham Lincoln, Margaret Thatcher or chairman Mao. All of these leaders have different management styles but they can be good leaders of people. In terms of business, we cannot deny that leadership is the most important factor to lead a company successfully.
Management styles can explain in the three-fold heading (Laurie et al 2016). Firstly, Authoritarian style is focused on the manager who decision making and authority for policy alone. Secondly, Democratic style is focused on the manager who is part of the team; group members can make a decision and determination of policy. Finally, Laissez-faire style is the manager who makes a decision and allows group members freedom of action. All of these styles have different advantage and disadvantage that depend on the situation.
Kurt Lewin is one of the good leaders in the world from the 20th century. He was a German-American psychologist. His work had the impact on social psychology especially, group dynamics and action research (Mark K. Smith, 2001). Moreover, He changes theory model is based on 3-step (Kurt Lewin theory) such as Unfreeze, Change, and Freeze. The first step, Unfreeze, this stage is about prepared to change from the comfort zone. The second step, Change, this stage occurs when we make the changes and move toward to new way. The final step, Freezing, this stage will happen when the changes are accepted and become standard (Mark Connelly,2016).
John Kotter is another one who creates the theory about management styles which can challenge Kurt Lewin theory. Kotter theory is about organizational change but the process of change in organizations is more complex than Lewin theory. Therefore, Kotter theory is more advantage because it is focused on change in every step and adjusts well in traditional hierarchies whereas Lewin theory doesn’t focus on change just accept and prepare to change, it might affect wrong decision (mind tool, n.d.). This theory still uses in these days.
However, leadership styles should adapt to different culture organization. For example, in Thailand, almost companies are authoritarian style (Hans Mühlbacher et al,2006). The management is Top-Down, it means lower position employees have to follow the decision by higher position employees. Moreover, only leaders have the authorization to decide about policy and let their employees do their work with themselves, it can explain the masculine theory. On the other hand, in the developed countries have been changed leadership style to Democratic style and Laissez-faire style which everyone is part of the companies. They can give some opinion or make some decision whether employees or leaders. For example, Steve Job, founder of Apple company, he is authoritarian leadership style. he centralizes the authority, he never given subordinates to involving decision making and he always decision everything about himself and his decision will affect to company quickly. It makes some employees fear him. The result is employees cannot gain experience and opportunity. It affects performance in Apple. He cannot motivate their employees in many times. His leadership style will be lack of management and lead to the threat of Apple’s success (Kutser et al,2014). There almost failed in the 1990s but Steve Job adapted management style. He became to democratic leader and hired experienced employees and let them make a decision that can help Apple survived in the industry (Eric Gill, 2014). Another example is Bill Gates, he is democratic style. He let every employee make a decision together. Moreover, he brings professional to manage the organization. Therefore, his motivate power will lead to succeed of Microsoft.
By the way, every leadership style whether authoritarian style, democratic style or laissez-faire style have the impact on the company. Furthermore, the important thing that company should concern for survived in the market is adaptation strategies and management. Therefore, change is the best strategy to adapt the business to the world situation. That why Lewin theory can still work until now. However, there has the disadvantage, change frequently will affect employees’ resistance or little enthusiasm. Furthermore, this theory didn’t specific about the process of change, it is focused only result. The theory should develop by a focus on participle of employees and let them decide together.
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Laurie, J. and Gill, C. (2016). Management & Organisational Behaviour: Pearson Education Limited, p.317-318.
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