The team leader in a small business is essential since this person offers actions and consistency in the most profitable way. Moreover, leaders support and inspire employees and provide them with the necessary means to carry out their responsibilities. Personal qualities influence the behavior of leaders and thereby determine the leadership style. Different styles have a contrasting influence on the teams and their success, and this impact can also depend on the work environment. Leadership techniques are not universal, and since workplaces have various requirements, atmospheres, and workflows, not all styles are applicable in specific circumstances. Although Brad Howser showed leadership qualities in the studied case, his style is not suitable for managing the team of an advertising agency accustomed to flexibility and freedom.
Several bright features stand out in Howser’s behavior – he requires strict compliance with rules, accuracy and order, for example, an official written request for office supplies and starting work at 9 a.m. precisely. Although he attempted to organize general meetings, involve employees in the discussion, and motivate them, he could not establish a trusting relationship with them. He also did not consider that everyone in the team already had a clear role and task, so there was no need to make proposals and gather frequent general meetings.
Howser’s work and motivating speeches were based on experience at the old place of work, and without adaption to new circumstances, they failed. This behavior and features are characteristic of the bureaucratic leadership style (Al Khajeh, 2018). This style could be effective in a small medical office, where discipline is vital for patients’ well-being and ordering equipment is complex. However, creativity and flexibility are needed in an advertising agency. Howser initially met agency founders’ hopes, taking over administrative duties. Nevertheless, due to his commitment to strict discipline, he could not establish relations with the creative team and brought new problems.
In the creative atmosphere of the advertising agency, it is essential to give employees the necessary funds and tools to realize their talent. Moreover, the leader should have strong organizational abilities based on the agency’s need to coordinate work, define jobs, and set priorities. Such features are characteristic of transformational leadership, in which the motivation, values, and interests of the organization and employees are balanced (Al Khajeh, 2018). Thus, a leader with a transformational style will be able to satisfy the needs of both the founders of the agency, performing administrative work and other employees, supporting their creativity and flexibility.
I see my main leadership features in the fact that I always involve team members in joint decision-making. I also try not to be suspended from work but to actively help colleagues if necessary. My leadership style is democratic, which focuses on supporting employees’ opinions. Democratic leaders motivate, value workers’ participation, and promote creativity, but this style can negatively affect decision-making (Al Khajeh, 2018). My style would also be effective in the advertising agency, but it would be necessary to adapt to more independent decision-making.
Thus, when choosing a leader, it is necessary to consider leadership style and the environment in which a leader is required. In the studied case, Howser’s bureaucratic style was incompatible with the flexibility of the advertising agency employees, which led to the personnel’s resignation. The transformational style would be the most suitable for the situation. It implies organizational abilities and the strong support of employees. I consider my leadership style as democratic, and its application is also possible in the case, but with some significant effort to make decisions.
Al Khajeh, E. H. (2018). Impact of leadership styles on organizational performance. Journal of Human Resources Management Research, 2018, 1-10. Web.