Likert's Four Styles

Likert's Four Styles

Developing on the notion that leadership style consists of two extreme positions-autocratic and democratic-Likert develops four styles of leadership to capture the management culture of an organization:

i.            Exploitative authoritative,

ii.            Benevolent authoritative,

iii.            Consultative, and

iv.            Participative.

i.         Exploitative authoritative: As an exploitative authoritarian, the leader uses sanctions, communication is downward, superiors and subordinates are psychologically distant, and the decisions are generally made at the top of the organization.

ii.        Benevolent authoritarian: Here the leader uses rewards to encourage performance, upward communication is permitted but to the extent the boss wants, subservience to boss is widespread, and there is some delegation in decision making, though major decisions are made by the people at the top of the hierarchy.

iii.     Consultative: Here the leader uses rewards, communication is two-way although upward, communication is cautious and limited, some involvement is sought from employees and as in the benevolent authoritarian style, subordinators are involved in decision-making in a limited way.

iv.      Participative: The leader disperses economic rewards and makes full use of group participation and involvement in setting performance standards and improving methods and procedures. Subordinates and superiors are psychologically close, and group decision-making is widespread in the organization. There is a tendency among a number of individuals to belong to more than workgroup in order to promote intergroup links and understanding.

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