Video:Overview of Lewin's Leadership Styleswith Dr. Jean Leahy
According to Lewin, there are three basic styles of leadership: democratic, authoritarian, and laissez-faire. This About.com video will go into greater detail explaining these leadership styles.See Transcript
Transcript:Overview of Lewin's Leadership Styles
My name is Dr. Jean Leahy. I'm a clinical psychologist in private practice in Chicago, and I'm here with About.com. Today, we're going to talk about Lewin's leadership styles.
Lewin is a German-American psychologist, and is known as one of the pioneers of social psychology. Lewin believed there were three leadership styles: Authoritarian, Democratic, and Laissez-Faire.
Leadership Styles: Authoritarian
The authoritarian leader would make decisions independent of the group with little impact or feedback from the group. This leader is usually considered bossy and controlling. An example of an authoritarian leader would be the military system, where there is little time to make a decision, and the leader often has more knowledge than other people in the group and has to act decisively.
Leadership Styles: Democratic
The second style is a democratic leadership style where the democratic leader offers some guidance and allows for a great deal of input. These leaders encourage participation, but have the final say in decisions. Group members under a democratic leader are less productive; however, they are more motivated and show greater creativity. This leadership style is generally considered the most effective.
Leadership Styles: Laissez-Faire
The last leadership style is laissez-faire, and it is considered the least productive. Members under this type of leadership make more demands upon the leader and are unable to work independently. This leadership style can be effective if the members are highly qualified in an area of expertise. However members under this leadership style are often unmotivated.
All leaders fall within one of these three categories, and the democratic leader is felt to be the most effective.
To learn more about Lewin's leadership styles and others, visit us on the web at About.com.