Styles and Theories of Leadership and how they are ‘appointed/prescribed’ or ‘chosen/emergent’.
There are three types of styles of leadership and they are: Autocratic, Democratic and Laissez-faire. Autocratic leaders are people who will tend to make all the decisions and they are motivated to complete tasks as quickly and effectively as possible. This type of leader will not take into account the opinions or preferences of the other people in the group. They will tend to focus on group performances and achieving goals instead of giving responsibilities to separate people. You would normally find this type of leader in dangerous and potentially life-threatening situations in outdoor pursuit activities. Democratic leaders normally share the decisions and give people within this group different responsibility. This leader looks to develop relationships within the team. By giving individuals ‘ownership’ of the task, it is hoped that they will work harder, developing unity and a common purpose. This is most effective in co-active games where time isn’t of the essence and personal support from the leader may be required. An example of this would be a football team, but research has shown that men prefer a more autocratic style of coaching. Whereas, women prefer a democratic style. Laissez-faire leaders tend to stand to the side and allow the people within that group to make the decisions for themselves. In some cases this could happen automatically and can result in a loss of group direction if the leader is insufficient. Research from Lewin (1985) found that members in the group tended to become more aggressive to others and were prone to give in easily when a mistake occurred.
There are also three theories of leadership which have been critically analysed and they are: Trait Approach, Social Learning Theory and Interactionist Theory. Trait Approach is when the theorists believe that the leaders are born with the attributes of a leader. The leadership...