when is democratic leadership effective?

Democratic leadership is often called participatory leadership because it's a collaborative effort between leaders and the people who follow them. You could imagine this being very useful if you are a at a student-teacher council meeting for instance. Realistically an effective leader would in some manner always partake of democratic leadership because if your group members are not empowered, you're not aiding them and empowering them to make decisions. Don't help in creating a single point of failure and handicapping progress as well as destroying any potential for brainstorming and collective problem-solving.

Often leaders are hung up on their power or position and title, which is entirely wrong because the most humble one in the group should be the leader. You should have nothing to be proud of and everything to be thankful for having the honor to lead others. Democratic leadership is excellent for team-building. It's perfect for developing others that you see as potential leaders by giving them a platform for them to speak up and be heard. They will feel appreciated and motivated to accomplish more for you. As a democratic leader, you expect people who answer to you to have expertise in their field and display self-confidence when they speak to you because they are partaking in the leadership process. However this does not mean you delegate the entire decision-making process over to them it simply means that you are including others in the decision-making process.

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Democratic leaders are extremely rational because they tend to be more egalitarian and feel comfortable rolling up their sleeves and getting to work and view others as peers and will attempt to reach a consensus to mediate to reach an agreement. When I was deployed overseas, I saw people of much higher rank than me; I'm writing about people who would be considered senior management, C suite level service members who were cleaning toilets and being called by their first name without honorifics as though they were just anyone else at the end of the day. The reason for that is that simply no one cares about how you feel about your title; no one cares that you need validation or how important you feel you are. Your ego-driven self-importance means little to nothing. It is not anyone's job to make you feel better about yourself or validate you. Harsh words to hear, but they'll accelerate your development if you take them to heart. It is your job to make sure that other people are being developed and reach the goals that the organization wants and needs.

When you partake in democratic leadership, which is just effective leadership, employees will have increased job satisfaction due to their sense of empowerment. You will build relationships based on mutual trust between employees and management. Additionally, you may lower absenteeism when employees have a strong commitment to their own performance instead of feeling coerced to work into something they really feel they have no passion for or a sense of purpose. Creativity and innovation will explode from a confluence of ideas when you allow brainstorming sessions to naturally occur within the team.

The only downfall in democratic leadership is that if you have a team made up of mostly new people who lack expertise, you may become misinformed or run into problems in decision-making due to lack of information. Also, you have to be careful with collaboration and not make everything into a project by brainstorming things that really are a matter of common sense. As a leader, do not become dependent on the expertise and experience of those you lead; of course, you have your own agenda to pursue. That is fine; however, you must learn from them as well so that there is no single point of failure.


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