Authoritarian Leadership Style Pros and Cons List

There are various types of leadership styles such as authoritarian, participative, democratic, situational and transformative among others. Authoritarian leadership style has evolved from authoritarian forms of government or monarchies. It essentially is a scenario wherein the leader has the last word and it is only the leader whose value, opinion or decision matters. No one in the team has any power to decide anything. Every type of leadership or style has its share of advantages and disadvantages. Here are the authoritarian leadership style pros and cons.

List of Pros of Authoritarian Leadership Style

1. Unflinching Focus
The most notable advantage of this style is that the task at hand gets done. Every employee has to work according to the norms predetermined by the leader. There is no way to hoodwink the rules or break the law. There is no room for dissent or disagreement. It is either the way of the leader or the highway. The focus of all employees or members of a team is entirely on the job and it gets done.

2. No Room for Exploitation
Authoritarian leaders are tough and don’t treat employees with kid gloves. Hence, there is little or no room for employees to take advantage of the leader. Employees cannot take the softhearted nature of the leader for granted. Employees would fear the leader and would stay on the necessary course.

3. Decisive Progress
Only one person withholds all the rights to decide. Hence, there is no indecisiveness. Every problem that crops up is immediately addressed by just one person. This also allows for uniformity. The progress is decisive and paced.

4. Quick Results
People don’t squabble over issues, members of the team don’t get the luxury to air opinions and thus engage in futile debates or fights and there is absolutely no indulgence on the part of the leader. As a result, authoritarian leadership ensures quicker results.

List of Cons of Authoritarian Leadership Style

1. Poor Leadership
An authoritarian leader cannot be corrected. That begs the question: who sets things right if the leader takes wrong decisions? The leader may eventually face the axe and get fired but the damage may be done by that time.

2. Hackneyed Progress
Since there is no diversity of opinion and people are not given any space to do things differently, the progress may be hackneyed. This works well in scenarios such as manufacturing but wouldn’t work at all in creative industries or in any space where individuality is necessary.

3. Unpopular & Discouraging
Authoritarian leadership doesn’t work very well these days. People are used to speak out their mind and they don’t want their leader to dictate everything or breathing down their neck.